The Christmas festive season springs into life during November and December in Australia. Cities around the country host lavish Christmas parades and concerts as well as adorning the city with spectacular light displays and other Christmas decorations. The Asia Pacific Screen Awards will also take place in Queensland on December 2.

Christmas in the City
November and December
Cities around Australia

Leading up to Christmas cities around Australia celebrate the festive season with free Christmas events and activities including concerts, caroling, parades and the turning on of Christmas lights. Highlights include Melbourne's Myer Christmas Windows display, Carols by Candlelight in Melbourne, Carols in the Domain in Sydney, Perth's Festival of Christmas and Brisbane's IGA Lord Mayor's Christmas Carols. Many native Australian plants (known as "Christmas plants") also come into bloom during the festive season.

Asia Pacific Screen Awards
December 2
Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre
Queensland, Australia

The Asia Pacific Screen Awards are Asia-Pacific's highest accolade in film. Thirty-one films from 15 countries and areas have been nominated for the fourth edition of the awards which seeks to honor outstanding achievements within the Asia-Pacific film industry.

Festival of the Sun
December 10-11
Sundowner Breakwall Tourist Pack, Port Macquarie
New South Wales, Australia

The Festival of the Sun is a two-day beach-side music event that brings together alternative, indie, hip hop, blues and roots musicians and their fans. The lineup includes Xavier Rudd, Regurgitator, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, British India, Calling All Cars and That 1 Guy.

Christmas, Boxing Day

December 25 and 26

Unlike in Europe and America where Christmas is characterised by snow and steaming-hot turkey, Australians are known to celebrate Christmas day with a barbecue and a swim at the beach due to the scorching-hot weather normally experienced around the country during that time. One Australian Christmas tradition sees around 40,000 people head to Sydney's Bondi Beach on Christmas Day each year. Australians also celebrate Boxing Day on December 26 (except in South Australia where the public holiday is known as Proclamation Day).