Written by Michael

Modified & Updated: 19 Jul 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith

Christmas in Brisbane

When you think of Christmas, images of snow, cozy fireplaces, and hot cocoa probably come to mind. But what if you were to replace the snow with sand, and the hot cocoa with a cold beer? Welcome to Christmas in Australia! In the Land Down Under, the festive season takes on a unique charm, as it coincides with summer. Let’s dive into 19 fun facts about Christmas in Australia to discover how Aussies turn up the heat during this beloved holiday.

Table of Contents

It’s a Summer Christmas

Christmas in Australia falls in December, the height of their summer season. So while the Northern Hemisphere is wrapping up warm, Australians are enjoying temperatures that can reach over 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

Christmas BBQs on the Beach

The hot weather calls for outdoor celebrations. Many Australians spend Christmas day at the beach, complete with barbecues cooking traditional fare alongside seafood and cold salads.

Seafood is a Staple

Instead of a roast, many Australians opt for a seafood feast on Christmas day. Fish markets are bustling with activity in the lead-up to the holiday, with prawns, lobsters, and oysters being popular choices.

Seafood Dish
Image from Flickr

Carols by Candlelight

A beloved tradition in Australia, ‘Carols by Candlelight’ events, where families and communities gather to sing carols together, are held across the country in the lead-up to Christmas.

Santa Ditches His Sleigh

Given the hot climate, Santa trades his traditional attire for cooler clothes and swaps his sleigh for a surfboard or ‘ute‘ (pickup truck). He’s even known to be pulled by kangaroos, or ‘six white boomers,’ as the popular Australian carol goes.

Christmas Bush Decorations

In place of traditional pine trees, some Australians decorate a native plant called the Christmas bush. This plant flowers with red or green leaves during the Christmas season.

The Boxing Day Test Match

Boxing Day in Australia means cricket. The Boxing Day Test Match is a historical tradition, where the Australian cricket team plays against another national team at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race

Another exciting event on Boxing Day is the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, one of the most challenging yacht races in the world, drawing international attention.

Christmas Crackers

Christmas crackers are a fun part of the Australian Christmas tradition. These festive decorations pop when pulled apart, revealing a small toy, a joke, and a paper crown inside.

Pavlova for Dessert

Pavlova, a meringue-based dessert topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream, is a popular choice for Christmas in Australia, although its origins are a hot topic of debate between Australia and New Zealand.

pavlova cake with raspberries
Image from Adobe Stock

Public Holiday Vibes

Christmas and Boxing Day are both public holidays in Australia, allowing families and friends to gather and enjoy the festive season and the sunny weather together.

Charity at Christmas

Australians embrace the Christmas spirit of giving, with many participating in charity events. One popular event is the Smith Family’s Christmas Appeal, which provides gifts and support to disadvantaged children.

Outdoor Christmas Light Displays

Australians love their Christmas light displays, with many neighborhoods hosting competitions for the best decorated houses.

The Magic of the Myer Christmas Windows

A much-anticipated event in Melbourne, the Myer Christmas Windows reveals a new festive-themed display each year, attracting visitors from across the country.

Wildlife Warriors

Christmas is a time for caring, and in Australia, this extends to wildlife too. Many Australians take part in or donate to conservation efforts to protect their unique wildlife over the festive season.

Indigenous Celebrations

For indigenous Australians, Christmas is an opportunity to incorporate traditional beliefs with Christian ones. Some communities blend native storytelling and dancing with Christmas carols and church services.

Multicultural Celebrations

Australia’s multicultural society means that Christmas is celebrated in a variety of ways. From British-inspired traditions to European customs like the German ‘Adventskalender,’ the diversity is delightful.

Christmas in Melbourne
Image from Adobe Stock

Christmas Cards and Stamps

Australia Post issues special Christmas-themed stamps each year for sending festive cheer across the country and overseas.

New Year’s Eve Fireworks

While not strictly Christmas, the holiday season in Australia isn’t complete without mentioning the spectacular New Year’s Eve fireworks in Sydney Harbor – a grand finale to the festive season!

Final Word

From beach barbecues to cricket matches, the Australian approach to Christmas is wonderfully unique. So if you’re dreaming of a different kind of white Christmas – perhaps one with white sandy beaches – why not consider spending the festive season in the sun-soaked Land Down Under? Just remember to pack your sunscreen, along with your Christmas cheer!

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