To fully appreciate the cultural melting pot that is Sydney, you need to look no further than Parramatta.
Its annual multicultural festival, Parramasala, has again turned the spotlight on diversity during a weekend-long (March 15-17) celebration of food, music, dance and street parades.
First held in 2009, the original Parramasala focused specifically on Western Sydney and, according to Festival Director Paul Obsborne, was originally a South Asian festival.
"A couple of years ago Multicultural NSW started funding the festival so it became part of a 'Multicultural March' - and [subsequently] more of a multicultural event," he said.
Parramasala is now one of the largest multicultural festivals in NSW and has grown to represent nations from South America to the Middle East, along with Indigenous Australians and those of South Asian heritage.
"I think many, many years ago something like this festival would have been considered exotic," Mr Osborne said.
"But I think in the current, contemporary Sydney... something like Parramasala is a real reflection of what our society is now.
"It's a big melting pot, it's a big 'masala' of culture."
The festival opened on the Friday night with a welcome parade that paid homage to Brazil's famous Carnival.
"The parade [involved] about 600 people from about 50 different cultures and they basically dance and play music and are in amazing costuming as they make their way down Church Street," Mr Osborne said.
An extensive line-up of musicians and artists also performed over the weekend, featuring acts such as Kaiit, Geniesis Owusu, True Vibenation, Thandi Pheonix, Electric Fields, Remi, the Pacific Women's Voices group and Sampa the Great.
"What [we did] is put together a really nice festival line up - that you would see at any festival in Australia on any given day.
What's special about our festival is that those artists just happen to come from a diverse background."
For the first time in the event's history, Parramasala also hosted a Long Table Brunch on the Sunday morning where politicians, religious leaders and community members sat down at a 100-metre long table for a communal meal.
"The idea of the brunch [was] that you get to come and sit and join with other people and meet other people from a range of cultures at one big table all together, which I think is a really beautiful thing and a really beautiful symbol." - Kate Atkinson @katebatkinson