The start of the Australian summer gives way to a series of under-the-sun music festivals, outdoors sports and beach-side events.
Festival of the Sun
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 characterized 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).
Sydney to Hobart Yacht race
Tasman Sea, Australia
99 Yachts will partake in the 65th edition of Australia's iconic Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht race. The event is one of the world's greatest blue-water classic races, and sits alongside major overseas racing events such as the Admiral's Cup, Kenwood Cup, One Ton Cup, the Fastnet Race and the America's Cup.
Sydney Festival 2011
The Sydney Festival is Australia's largest summer festival. With its more than one million visitors it outshines Australia's other arts festivals including the Perth International Arts Festival, the Brisbane Festival and the Adelaide Bank Festival of Arts. It has been running since 1977 and aims to showcase local and international talent while at the same time celebrating Australian culture. More than 1,500 artists in the fields of dance, theater, music, visual arts, and cross media platforms will be involved in the 2011 Sydney Festival. Most events are free to the public.