Australia’s lifestyle is world-famous – the barbecues, the endless summers and the iconic sights. But if you’re considering immigration to Australia, have you ever wondered what it’s really like to live here?
Government statistics show that Australia is one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world, which adds to the rich tapestry of interests and activities that Australian residents enjoy.
Almost 400 different languages are spoken, and Australians have ancestries from around 270 different countries.
A nation of sports fans
Not everyone in Australia is sports-mad, but a large percentage of the population participates in sports in some way.
Spectator sport is also big business in Australia, and cricket and football codes are the largest drawcards.
- Cricket is a national obsession, especially in the summertime when the game is traditionally played.
- Rugby league (NRL) is popular in Queensland and New South Wales.
- Australian Rules Football (AFL) is watched by more people on television than any other football code, including soccer.
- Rugby Union comes in second to AFL for average weekly attendance at matches, according to a report in The Guardian.
- Soccer is actually the most popular football code to play in Australia, according to Roy Morgan Research.
Professional women’s sports are increasingly popular, including women’s cricket and soccer. The AFL is developing a professional women’s league, due to be launched in 2017.
Playing sport is considered a rite of passage for Aussie kids, especially swimming, netball, Australian rules football and cricket.
Many children’s team sports are played on weekends, with regular training sessions during the week.
Climate and time zones
Because of its enormous land mass, Australia has many different climates and several time zones.
Northern Australia is closer to the equator and has a tropical climate. Sydney has a sub-tropical climate and frequent rainfall.
The southern cities of Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth are all temperate climates, while the southernmost state of Tasmania has cooler temperatures for most of the year.
Few areas of Australia experience snow fall.
Australia has three separate time zones. In the summer months, some states also swap to daylight savings, which allows more hours of daylight.
The Australian political system is based on elements of the United Kingdom’s Westminster system of government, and the US system of government.
Australia is also a constitutional monarchy. The Queen of England is the head of state, although in reality she doesn’t play an active role in Australian politics and leaves decisions to the various Australian governments.
The federal government makes laws that affect the whole country, for example migration, defence and taxation. It is based in Canberra, the nation’s capital city. State governments legislate on law and order, health and other matters. Local governments, or councils, are responsible for looking after roads, car parking, public libraries and other issues that affect the local area in which a person lives.
Members of all three levels of government are elected by the Australian public and voting is compulsory for all Australian citizens aged 18 and over.
The arts scene in Australia is vibrant, enriched by multicultural diversity.
Various arts festivals are held in cities all over Australia, encompassing visual, performing and experimental arts.
The Sydney Opera House is perhaps Australia’s biggest artistic icon, with events ongoing throughout the year. The National Gallery of Victoria and Heide Museum of Modern Art, both located in Melbourne, are drawcards for the visual arts and the Adelaide Festival of Arts is regarded as one of the greatest arts festivals in the world.
Australia is a land of great diversity in culture, climate, and politics. But sports and the arts unite Australians, allowing them to enjoy active lifestyles and year-round events and activities.
It’s not all barbecues and sunshine, although Aussies certainly have a talent for enjoying them as well! If you’re thinking about immigration to Australia but want more information about visas and the lifestyle, contact Move Migration.