When is Australia Day and what do we Celebrate?
The 26th January is Australia Day, when Australians celebrate all the things they love about their country.
The day marks the anniversary of the First Fleet’s arrival in Sydney in 1788 from England. Australia Day was initially a celebration of the expansion of the British Empire. However, it has since become a celebration of the country’s cultural diversity. From the Aboriginals to the British, the country is a rich mix of nationalities and cultures.
In fact, in a recent survey 75% of Australians said that Australia Day had a far bigger meaning beyond being just a day off work!
There is some controversy…
There has been much controversy in recent years about the date of Australia Day. Some celebrate the 26th January as the day that the British Empire arrived on Australian soil. Others mourn the day that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples lost much of their land. Many who can claim native heritage use the day to mark the survival of their ongoing traditions and cultures and others want to use it as a day to teach others about their nation’s past.
How do we celebrate?
Controversy aside, the national day provides an opportunity to celebrate the country as a whole, and what it means to be an Australian in 2019. Australia Day falls in the middle of the Australian summer and is often celebrated outdoors in parks or on the beach. Aussies enjoy outdoor concerts and performances, street parades and fireworks in celebration.
We wish all our Australian friends a very Happy Australia Day!