Why Australians Celebrate Christmas in July

Why Australians Celebrate Christmas in July

Don’t you just wish it could be Christmas every day? If you’re after some mid-year cheer in the southern hemisphere, you’re in luck, as there are Yuletide celebrations twice a year. It’s a great excuse to eat, drink and be merry, but many have been left questioning why Australians celebrate Christmas in July. The short answer? July marks the middle of winter in the southern hemisphere and the cooler temperatures lend themselves to all the cosy Christmas traditions - flickering fires, flowing mulled wine and wrapped presents waiting in anticipation beneath a bauble-clad tree. It’s easy to understand why our friends across the water want in on the wintery additions. In the Land Down Under, snow doesn’t blanket the beaches but rather the sun scorches and Christmas celebrators swap Santa costumes for swimsuits and flock to the sandy shores with barbeques and beers in hand. Read on to find out more about Christmas in July…


What is Christmas in July?

The Christmas in July phenomenon has spread its rather unusual festivities around the world, as more and more Yuletide enthusiasts find themselves reaching for the tinsel and cracking open the eggnog on the unlikely dates of the 24th and 25th of July. Of course, few do celebrations better than the Aussies, but why Australians celebrate Christmas in July is still somewhat of a mystery. It’s hard to distinguish where exactly this novel concept originated, but many guess that northern hemisphere expats are the likely culprits. Although some urban legends do tell of a Christmas celebrated in July at Keystone Camp in Brevard, North Carolina, in 1933. The occasion was complete with a decorated tree, false snow and a festive dip in the camp’s lake and Father Christmas was even in attendance!


Why Celebrate Christmas in July?

It’s easy to appreciate why this beloved holiday has double the yearly celebrations, especially when a Christmas forced to be held in summer lacks that cold wintery magic that we all know and love. Even now, as we near the big Christmas day in July, the need for this mid-year festivity is even more important, as we inch further from the pandemic that restricted so many of us from celebrating the holiday together. This second attempt at a merry Christmas gives those in need the opportunity to be with loved ones, as we make up for missed in-person moments.


Where to Holiday During the Not-so-Festive Season

While Michael Bublé and Mariah Carey defrost early in time to serenade the occasion and spread some Christmas cheer, jet across to Australia to celebrate all things Christmassy. Whether its sun seeking in the state of Queensland, where you’ll find restaurants boasting festive menus and overflowing gravy boats or experiencing Canberra’s Christmas in July Festival at the National Rose Garden, there is a Noël-themed celebration for all that believe in the magic of Christmas. If snow is a must, you can even head to the slopes of Thredbo or Perisher where there are snow sports galore, as well as a steady stream of skiing Santas who can be found crisscrossing their way down the course; it’s impossible not to feel the festive spirit.


How to Celebrate Christmas in July

You don’t have to travel all the way to Australia to celebrate Christmas in July. Don your best and most garish Christmas attire and scoff a mince pie and you’ll likely find yourself feeling sufficiently festive, despite the considerably warmer weather. Of course, with occasions like this, personal traditions will often be the most poignant, but for the real authentic Australian Christmas in July celebration, it’s all about decking the halls with winter-meets-summer decorations (we’re talking starfish replacing angels on top of the Christmas tree); getting creative with the festive feast (barbequed turkey anyone?) and remembering that the true spirit of Christmas doesn’t always have to mean lavish gifts. Often, it’s about who’s around the table, asking for more potatoes, reeling off Christmas cracker jokes and generally sharing memory-making moments with your loved ones.