It’s no secret that Australians know how to celebrate! From sports games and music festivals to various public holidays, there is always something to look forward to in the land down under. However, there are some essential dates that every Australian should mark on their calendar, to show respect and commemoration where it is due.
These events celebrate the country’s history, cultural diversity, and achievements. In this article, we’ve compiled a list of must-know dates for Australians to make sure you don’t miss out.
ANZAC Day – April 25
ANZAC Day is one of Australia’s most important national days of remembrance. It commemorates the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought in the Gallipoli campaign during World War I. Nowadays, ANZAC Day honours all Australians who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations. Australians pay their respect with dawn services, parades, and wreath-laying ceremonies.
Reconciliation Day (National Reconciliation Week is held annually from May 27-June 3)
Reconciliation Day in Australia marks the anniversary of the 1967 Referendum and the High Court Mabo decision. The day aims to increase awareness and understanding of Indigenous Australian history and culture, and promote reconciliation between the Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. The reconciliation process includes acknowledging the past, respecting Indigenous cultures, and working together towards a shared future.
National Sorry Day – May 26
National Sorry Day is a significant and solemn event to recognise the atrocities and injustices the Indigenous people of Australia experienced during the era of forced removals (‘the Stolen Generations’). National Sorry Day acknowledges their trauma and suffering, and highlights the importance of reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.
NAIDOC Week – First Week of July
NAIDOC Week celebrates the history, culture, and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The event dates back to the 1920s, when Aboriginal rights activists organised a ‘Day of Mourning’ to acknowledge the survival of their culture and the impacts of colonisation. NAIDOC Week events include community markets, art exhibitions, music festivals, cultural performances and more.
Australians have a vibrant and diverse culture, and there is always a date to commemorate
Marking these must-know dates in your calendar will allow you to engage with your community, learn about the country’s history and cultures, and celebrate national identity. As Australians, we have a responsibility to acknowledge the pain and injustices that the original inhabitants of our land experienced and work towards reconciliation. Remembering significant dates like Reconciliation Day is a vital step in the journey towards healing and unity.