Main Attractions of Australia Day in Sydney
January 26th is a special day for Aussies. It’s the National Day of Australia, celebrated with much fervour and energy throughout the country.
The day marks the arrival of the first fleet of convict ships at Port Jackson and the raising of the British flag at what is now Sydney Harbour, in 1788. From then on there was no stopping this great nation, rising from strength to strength.
The greatness culminates every year on the Australia Day celebrations, which have always been steeped in tradition, going back many years.
So what are the main events that highlight Australia Day in Sydney?
The Harbour is one of the main stages for the activities that unfold as part of Aus Day celebrations.
Some of the main highlights are
Sydney Harbour will make a splash with the annual Ferrython, one of Australia’s most popular and iconic free events. See our beloved ferries in this hugely popular Australia Day tradition, as they venture from Circular Quay to Shark Island and then back to a glorious finish at the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Tall Ships race,
A fleet of historic ships will battle it out for the Tall Ships Trophy 2018. For the best viewing of the exciting finish, head to the Overseas Passenger Terminal or Hickson Road Reserve.
RAAF fly through,
A 21-gun military salute involving the Australian Army, Royal Australian Navy and Royal Australian Air Force provides the ceremonial highpoint of the Sydney Harbour program and is now a much-loved Australia Day tradition.
Wugulora Indigenous Morning ceremony to name a few.
Begin your Australia Day by celebrating the world’s oldest surviving culture. Watch a special performance by Indigenous dancers and singers at Barangaroo. Listen and sing along with the choral performance of the Budjari Gunyalungalung Baraya-la, which translates as ‘Let’s Sing
The evening is finished off by the spectacular Darling Harbour Australia Day fireworks.
There are many venues from where you can get good views of the events but the best views are from the decks of any of the Australia Day cruises on Sydney Harbour. These special event cruises cover most of the popular Aus Day harbour events and offer a close view to all the action.
First started in 1837, the ship races have garnered intense participation and viewership, thus prompting the organisers to make it a yearly event. The races of the ferries and tall ships are an important part of Aus Day celebrations on the harbour. In olden days, spectators stood on the decks of ships to get the best views of the races. Now there are many Australia Day cruises on the Sydney Harbour offering the same, continuing the tradition.
Australia Day is also about celebrating the multi-culturalism of the country, with the population comprising of descendants from different races. The indigenous Australians have a rich culture of their own and that is showcased in the Wugulora Indigenous Morning Ceremony. Indigenous population of Australia form a key part of the demographics of the country and are honoured every year in Aus Day celebrations.
Aus Day special barbies or BBQs are organised and is a way of celebrating the national holiday with a get-together of family and friends. Many choose to celebrate the holiday by hanging out with loved ones. By choosing a special Australia Day cruise all action on Sydney Harbour can be viewed, while enjoying the company of your near and dear on an air-conditioned boat with good food.
Darling Harbour fireworks, the final part of the ensemble, is a visual pyrotechnic extravaganza to finish off Australia Day celebrations with a bang. There are also many Australia Day dinner cruises starting from Sydney Harbour that offer good views of the fireworks and delicious gourmet meals.
This day is fully packed with action from morning till evening. With a variety of events to choose from, there will be something to catch your interest. So come and experience the rich tradition and culture of Australia!