In 1788, the first fleet of British ships arrived at Port Jackson on January 26th. Fast forward to 2019, and today, January 26th is officially celebrated as the National Day of Australia.
Australia Day celebrates the diverse society and the cultural landscape of our nation; marked by large-scale, fun-filled, social and cultural events.
Celebrations include community festivals, citizenship ceremonies, traditional outdoor barbeques, sports competitions, elaborate fireworks, music concerts and much more! The Australian of the Year awards are presented, the Australia Day honours list is announced, and the Governor General and Prime Minister of Australia give special addresses.
If you’re excited about this year’s national day but wondering what to do, here are some great ideas!
● Kick off the day with an elaborate national flag raising ceremony at either Regatta Point or Patrick White Lawns. Following the ceremony, enjoy entertainment featuring local Canberra artists and then indulging in ab outdoor BBQ a la Canberra style. There will be many options for kiddie entertainment and activities too.
● A grand live concert will mark the beginning of the evening at 4:00 p.m. so you can to sit back and enjoy a mix of tunes catering to everyone. If you want to skip the live entertainment at any point, you can pack up a picnic, maybe some cheese and vegemite sandwiches, and head to Patrick White Lawns as there will be plenty of activities for children and adults alike. Practice golf, try some cricket or just lounge around the park all evening!
● If you are an avid foodie, then head to the marketplace, where local food and gastronomic delicacies are rife, to satiate your taste buds. You can even enjoy some cocktails at the National Museum Australia Day cocktail party.
● As the evening sets in, head to the banks of the Lake Burley Griffin to enjoy the fireworks display. Carry your camera along to capture the night’s delights! Dance to some truly Australian tunes being played in the background, as the pyrotechnics light up the sky.
All in all, however you choose to celebrate Australia Day, remember that it is much more than just a national holiday. It’s about celebrating the spirit of the nation as one no matter where you come from. Let’s commemorate the essence of contemporary Australia and acknowledge its history and rich diversity.