Australia is a thriving country, flourishing and abundant in so many aspects, lacking in nothing actually.
From A to Z, name it – accessories, appliances, gadgets, rideables and gifts, furnishings and food, this guide to an Aussie Yuletide is packed with enjoyable activities and more, as there's always something for anyone, and what everyone can have and do, be it with family and/or close friends.
It’s really easy to get right into the holiday spirit.
In case you’re visiting or if you’re new to the country, maybe you’re wondering what Christmas looks like ‘Down Under’ …
Well, here goes. Make a countdown on your calendar. Christmas in Australia is celebrated on the 25th of December. On this day, presents are exchanged, and lunch or dinner -- or both is shared.
Australia is a multicultural country. Many families celebrate Christmas on the eve of December 24th just as they do in other parts of Europe.
But wait, it doesn’t stop there. The day after Christmas is also important – it is what Australians call Boxing Day. If the day after Christmas falls before the weekend, the following Monday is declared a public holiday, which is otherwise known as a “long weekend”.
Let's get to know 'em.
As already mentioned, Australians love to celebrate Christmas. Exchanging gifts is also an Australian tradition and activity where families enjoy big lunches with all the trimmings. Since it’s summer, barbecues, seafood and outdoor games like cricket are popular. Precisely because it’s summer, many Aussies converge around pools or at the beach for a leisurely tan. What about tweaking the seascape or water fun celebration a bit? Make a trip around about town or up the hilly terrains for some summer nature adventure, riding separately your Mearth S Pro, Mearth RS, Mearth GTS electric scooters -- think of it as a thrilling joyride outdoors with the family.
Sydney is packed with fun, free events during the festive season. Highlights include the Lights of Christmas, where incredible digital stories like “Home”, inspire closeness, togetherness are projected onto St. Mary’s Cathedral. For some last-minute shopping or enjoy the tradition of a market, The Rocks Christmas Markets are running every Saturday and Sunday in December. Live entertainment amid colorful decorations keep the holiday spirit buoyed.
In Melbourne, the Federation Square transforms into a Christmas Square in December where there are food stalls to enjoy, Santa Claus’s Big Workshop to explore and of course, the ever present 16-meter brightly lit tree. There’s more! Highlights include the famous Christmas projections, with animations lighting up the State Library of Victoria, Melbourne Town Hall and Princes Bridge. Live street art long Hosier Lane decorate the streets with festive scenes, courtesy of very creative artists.
It’s time for a picnic in Brisbane, for free and live performances at the Festive Beats at the South Bank Parklands. Queensland offers a cozy evening, with choices of holiday movies and blockbusters, certainly for free at the South Bank Christmas Cinema.
Adelaide has its own version -- a Christmas Festival at the city center hosts a wide range of events alongside free performances by Festive Sounds under the enormous tree in Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga.
While every Aussie family can make their own spin or version on the traditional Christmas food, the celebration usually revolves around the barbecue -- seafood (especially prawns), meats or vegetables -- served with fresh salads, sauces and bread. For dessert, the mouthwatering Pavlova comes with fruit and cream, pudding, mince pies, fruit cake and every variation of trifle you can possibly think of. Australians just love it.
The tradition of Secret Santa or Kris Kringle is very popular here. The general idea is to set a spending limit, then each person picks a name out of a hat and keeps it secret. You buy a gift for that person, sticking to the price limit, and place it under the tree. This way, no one knows who the gifts are from, but everyone gets a present.
While thinking about sending small gifts and holiday cards to one’s family across the seas, hosting a virtual party via zoom is something altogether new, but it keeps the family connection and bond alive. Organizing a gathering of loved ones – near or far, as you all enjoy your respective meals over zoom, and later cap it with a light, festive movie viewing in sync, where families can watch.
The Christmas Holiday is the perfect time to unwind and relax with your nearest and dearest, to gather and recount fond memories, share warm food, lovingly prepared. Amid simple or basic one’s preparations, the festive trimmings as they are called, cannot replace the joy of being present, being alive, and being there for each other, hugging, exchanging gifts, wishing everyone Merry Christmas. Our love ones. That’s what truly matters.
Like the first family that welcomed a newborn babe in swaddling clothes lying on a humble manger, one starry night. 'Peace on Earth and goodwill to all mankind.' The universal celebration that began over 2,000 years ago will never cease to bring wonders in this technology-driven world. The very reason why we place above else those we hold dear because they're ties that bind us to our humanity and His Divinity.
Wishing everyone a safe, healthy and happy festive season.