In 2015, Boxing Day will be on a Saturday. It is always a public holiday, where schools and banks are closed. If this pair of holidays falls on the weekend, days during the following week are given as public holidays. Tourists visiting Australia should be aware that public transportation often runs in a limited capacity on Boxing Day and in some areas public transport might not run at all.

Sporting Events

The day after Christmas is a festive one, especially for sports fans. A number of important events take place on Boxing Day including a cricket match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground - the Boxing Day test. This annual test match is between the Australian team and another national team that is on tour in Australia. The match generally lasts between 3 and 5 days. Whether or not you are in Melbourne, it is also a popular event to watch on TV.

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Another big sporting event held on Boxing Day is a yacht race from Sydney to Hobart. Sometimes called the "Bluewater Classic" this race covers a distance of 630 nautical miles between the harbour in Sydney and Hobart. It now takes about two days for yachts to complete this race and television features wide coverage of the event.

Shopping

Across Australia, sales begin right after Christmas on Boxing Day. In an effort to get rid of stock that wasn't sold in the lead up to Christmas, stores offer big discounts and shoppers can find excellent value by braving the crowds on this public holiday. In some states, all stores are open, while in others some remain closed in observance of the Christmas holiday season.

Time with Friends and Family

While sports and shopping grab the attention of many on Boxing Day, this public holiday is another excuse to gather with friends and family for a good meal. While people in the northern hemisphere are tucked inside by burning fireplaces, people in Australia hit the beaches for outdoor barbecues. All along the coastline, communities come together for excellent barbecues and picnics that keep the holiday spirit going a little longer after the climax of Christmas Day.

Holiday Rentals

With kids on holidays from school, Christmas Day and Boxing Day can be a great time to travel. To replicate the comfort of home, choose holiday rentals. These cosy properties offer full kitchens for preparing favourite holiday meals and plenty of space for opening presents on Christmas morning. Plan a special breakfast on the morning of Boxing Day or stock the fridge with picnic supplies for a day of beach family fun.