Surfing Santas’ in Australia

Celebrating Christmas down under means BBQs, beach days, camping trips and surfing Santas!  In Australia, Christmas is less about chestnuts roasting on an open fire and more about peel-and-eat prawns (shrimp) cooking on the barbie. Since it is summer, Australian Santas ride surfboards instead of sleds!!!

In the weeks leading up to Christmas, Australians celebrate by having a different Christmas party with every group of people they know… These parties start in early November and culminate with Christmas Eve when most people, including adults, start their 2 to 3 week Christmas break. Christmas day begins with a swim in the ocean with family, followed by a massive lunch of fresh seafood, salads and pavlova and trifle.

For those not hip to these well-loved desserts, pavlova is a meringue dessert with a crisp crust and soft, light inside, usually topped with fruit and whipped cream and trifle is a dessert with layers of fruit, sponge cake soaked in sherry, and custard.  Australians also like to celebrate Boxing Day which is December 26th with family, another BBQ and by watching the Sydney to Hobart sailing race on TV or from a boat on Sydney’s harbor. Everyone enjoys Christmas leftovers and most dads and grandpas will watch the cricket match on TV, which goes ALL day long. Cricket games go so long they stop for tea in the middle of the game!

Christmas for Kids in Australia

For kids, Christmas time means school’s out for summer! The school year finishes right before Christmas so most families like to go camping or travel during the summer holidays which finish at the end of January.  Campgrounds all over Australia are packed full of kids swimming, playing, riding bikes and having the time of their lives.  Some families even set up camp for the entire Christmas holiday period which is usually over 6 weeks long!

Christmas time is such an amazing time to be in Australia because we combine all the fun of summer with the most exciting holiday of the year.  Australians lovingly refer to this time as the “silly season” because everyone basically goes silly with parties, great food and good times with family.  It is truly a happy time for all, maybe that’s why Aussies say “Happy Chrissy!” to each other as they put on Santa hats and go for a surf!

This was a guest post from Audrey Hills.

Audrey Hills is a native Californian (yay, San Diego) who moved down under and now calls Sydney, Australia home. Surfing has been a part of her life since she was four years old. Today, she spends her time surfing, traveling, cooking and camping with her partner and 2.5 year old daughter, Valentina.  When she’s not in the water or on the road, Audrey writes the blog,, which is dedicated to women who refuse to lose their wild side and want incorporate their children into their adventurous lifestyles! 

Andrea Fellman is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of Twist Travel Magazine. She is a stylish nomad and expat mom living in Barcelona with her husband, two kids and a dog! She blogs about family travel, expat life, and her online business adventures at Wanderlust Living.

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