Believe it or not, Australian culture looks nothing like the image cultivated by old Foster’s commercials and cheesy 1980’s Hollywood blockbusters. Catch a glimpse of the real Australia by checking out these 7 cultural qualities.
1. AUSTRALIANS MAIN VALUES SUPPORT EQUAL RIGHTS AND EQUAL OPPORTUNITY
Aussie’s are known for being open-hearted and open-minded and think that everyone has the right to get a fair go. This can be seen in the universal support of publicly funded health care and education systems. Australia is not as socially hierarchical as England and is very multicultural, with most of the world’s religions practiced here. The Australian culture is a unique blend of its own that can’t really be compared to anywhere else.
2. AUSTRALIA’S INDIGENOUS PEOPLE ARE THE OLDEST LIVING CIVILIZATION ON EARTH
Australia is home to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who have inhabited the content for 60,000 years. The key elements of Aboriginal culture include a special connection to the land and the commitment to family and community. The rights of different Aboriginal groups to live and manage in certain areas of land are recorded through art, stories, song, and dance.
3. AUSTRALIANS SPEAK A UNIQUE STRAIN OF ENGLISH
The national language of Australia is English and the majority of people speak it, but it might not be English that you have heard before. Australian slang can be difficult for foreigners to understand, with many words abbreviated. Even your own name might not be safe, when Australian’s feel comfortable with you they may give you a nickname which may be a slightly altered version of your name. If you want to understand some common Aussie slang, check out our blog here.
4. AUSTRALIANS LOVE TO DRINK
Enjoying an alcoholic beverage after a day at work, on the weekend, with a friend, with family, or for any excuse really, is a big Australian past-time. According to the World Health Organization, Australia ranks third in the most alcohol consumed per capita each year. With great breweries in each city and great wineries dotting the countryside, it’s no wonder this is an Aussie’s favorite pastime. It is common to clink glasses with your drinking partner and say “Cheers!” before taking the first sip.
5. AUSTRALIANS ARE OBSESSED WITH SPORT
Australian’s can be very passionate about sport and tend to back teams that are local to where you live or grew up. They might not take themselves too seriously, but the same can’t be said when it comes to sport. From massive international events like the Australian Open tennis and the Formula One Grand Prix in Melbourne to local leagues like the AFL and the NRL, along with the beloved summer of cricket to all the water sports that miles of golden coastline affords, Australia is a sports lover’s paradise.
6. AUSTRALIANS EAT THEIR NATIONAL SYMBOL
Such vibrant multiculturalism means that Australia doesn’t really share one cohesive cuisine – lamb roast is as common as fettuccine or pho or falafel. But there is one quirky feature of Australian food: kangaroo regularly finds its way onto the menu. With 50 million roos hopping around the country – twice the population of humans – Australia’s national icon is a common meal, in the form of steak or sausages (known as ‘kanga bangers’).
7. AUSTRALIANS ARE CITY SLICKERS AND BEACH BUMS
Despite that stereotypical image of Crocodile Dundee roaming the Outback, Australia is actually one of the most urban nations on Earth. Around 85% of the 25 million population live within 50km of the coast, including 10 million in the two biggest cities, Sydney and Melbourne. Maybe the allure of Australia’s 10,685 sparkling beaches is just too much to resist. Partake in the beach lifestyle and head to one of the thousands of beautiful beaches on the weekend for a swim, a sunbake, or even a spot of people watching.