Although it may seem like I try and leave Australia to go travelling every chance I get, I do in fact love this country I’m fortunate enough to call home. There are many reasons why I love Australia and seeing as today is Australia Day, I thought it was the perfect time to write them allll down.
1. Kmart. Kmart is every budget shopper’s paradise. You can buy everything at bargain prices, including homewares, clothing and electronics. My wardrobe is always filled with an item or ten of Kmart clothing. But seriously, people are always telling me they can’t wait to go overseas to go shopping. I’m the opposite. I can’t wait to get home to shop til I drop.
2. Aussie music. I love Australia and its music artists. If you don’t think you know any good Australian musicians, trust me, there’s plenty out there. Some of my current favourites: Vera Blue, Vallis Alps, Illy, Vance Joy, Pnau and Flume. A little mixture of everything.
3. Lollies. This love letter to Australia could honestly just be about food. Sorry world, but your candy sucks. Natural Confectionery Company and Allen’s all the way! I also LOVE raspberry liquorice, which seems to only be an Australian thing?
4. Beautiful beaches. Australia has some of the best beaches in the world. I grew up swimming in Western Australia’s waters, which I think must be the best in the country. But no matter what coast you’re on in Australia, expect to be won over by its impressive beaches. More than 80% of the population live close to the coast and we all know why.
5. Friendly locals. I know that not every Australian is friendly, but on average I think we’re a pretty easygoing bunch of people. I noticed it as soon as I got back in the country—it felt good to be home.
6. Pretty islands. Australia is one gigantic pretty island. But then you also have stunning islands like my parent’s home Magnetic Island, Kangaroo Island, Norfolk Island, the Whitsunday islands, Phillip Island, and you know, Tasmania.
7. Varied landscapes. I love that Australia has it all when it comes to landscapes. As well as the beautiful beaches, Australia is also home to snowy mountains, incredible national parks, rainforests and desert. The landscape truly differs from state to state, which is why this country is so fun to explore!
8. Sunshine and rainbows. We have pretty good weather in Australia. Melbourne may experience all four seasons, but its winters are very mild compared to Europe and North America. Meanwhile, in Townsville where I grew up, it’s all about the tropical climate, where there are two seasons: wet and dry. This isn’t my favourite, but I know my parents love not experiencing winter…ever.
9. Sports. I’m not the most sports-loving Australian in existence. However, I do love rugby league (my team is the North Queensland Cowboys, in case you’re wondering). Australians also go gaga for AFL (Australian Football League) and cricket.
10. Cool cities. Although I’ll always be partial to Melbourne (named the world’s most livable city on several occasions), a lot of people love Sydney, because it has hipster suburbs and Bondi Beach. There’s also my old home of Brisbane and Perth, where I was born. Basically, Australia has awesome cities.
11. Tim tams. Tim tams are the bomb. I mean chocolate-covered biscuits? YUM.
12. Aussie slang. I love Aussie slang. We have some of the weirdest slang words that I use on the regular. For example, bludger (a lazy person, a.k.a me) and bogan (Australia’s version of a redneck). I also love that we shorten everything: arvo (afternoon), avo (avocado), smoko (morning tea).
13. Outdoor living. Aussies love the outdoors. I would say 95% of homes and apartments have some kind of balcony or deck, so everyone can enjoy the beautiful outdoors and weather we are blessed with down under. Get outdoors and sit on a pub’s patio, go for a walk along the beach or play a game of cricket in the park.
14. Thongs forever. Australians are pretty laid back people. Some would say too laid back. But every Aussie owns a pair of thongs (flip flops) and we wear them all.the.time. This means that as a visitor you can also wear them all the time too. Embrace the Aussie lifestyle.
15. Aussie animals. I LOVE Australian animals. I would go so far as to say that we have the best native animals in the world. Platypuses, echidnas, kangaroos, wombats and my personal favourite, koalas.
16. The pay. After doing two working holidays in Canada, I will never take for granted the awesome casual wages I get paid in Australia.
17. Because our celebrities look like this. I mean, I know Canada has the Ryans, but we have Chris Hemsworth AND Hugh Jackman. End of story.
I know there are also things about Australia that aren’t lovely, such as the fact it’s pretty expensive and there are too many animals starting with S that want to kill you (sharks, spiders, snakes, sea wasps, saltwater crocodiles, stonefish, stingrays etc). BUT, all in all, I love Australia and I love being Australian.