Australia Day marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British Ships at Port Jackson, New South Wales, and raising of the Flag of Great Britain at that site by Governor Arthur Phillip.
In contemporary Australia, the holiday is marked by the presentation of the Australian of the Year Awards on Australia Day Eve, announcement of the Australia Day Honors list and addresses from the Governor-General and Prime Minister. It is an official public holiday in every state and territory of Australia. With community festivals, concerts and citizenship ceremonies, the day is celebrated in large and small communities and cities around the nation. Australia Day has become the biggest annual civic event in Australia.
For North America, Australia Day falls in the middle of winter. But never fear! There are plenty of celebrations and events to commemorate this national Australian holiday here on our home turf:
Australia Day events in Canada
- January 26 – AWS of Toronto’s Australia Day Dinner – Toronto – $129.98
- January 26 – Hemingway’s – Toronto – Free