So there you are, all set for a great summer of sport and planning your trip to Australia. Of course, it’s winter in Australia, but unlike the UK, that doesn’t have to mean your sport comes with a howling gale, torrential rain and a half time search for a decent pie. Here are your Australian summer (winter) sporting highlights, together with a few things you should know before you go.
Winter doesn’t really feel like winter in most of Australia, which explains why sport simply carries on as if the change of seasons never happened. Here are some highlights for June, July and August 2015:
Ironman Cairns, 14 June, QLD
From Cairns to Port Douglas, the Captain Cook Highway is the road and the Great Barrier Reef the backdrop to one of the most dramatic road races in the world.
See it because: the Tour de France never passes through rainforest.
V8 Supercars, 19 – 21 June, NT
The mighty V8 Supercars descend on Darwin’s Hidden Valley circuit as part of the Skycity Triple Crown, V8 Supercar Championship Series.
See it because: it’s one of the biggest sporting events of the year in Darwin.
Photo courtesy of Ironman Official Site
Gold Coast Airport Marathon, 4 – 5 July, QLD
27,000+ people take on the Gold Coast Airport Marathon every year. And all of them are grateful for it being really flat. There’s still time to enter, here.
See it because: it’s one of the world’s more picturesque marathons.
Photo courtesy of Gold Coast Marathon
Netball World Cup, 7 – 16 August, NSW
Once every 4 years, 16 nations gather to determine the world’s greatest netball nation. And almost every time Australia wins. Now the tournament is on home turf, who’d bet against them? See for yourself in Sydney this August.
See it because: World class sport and Australia on home turf.
Sun-Herald City2Surf, 9 August, NSW
Doing exactly what it says on the tin, 85,000+ entrants run or walk from Sydney’s Hyde Park to Bondi Beach. That’s 14km.
See it because: it’s the world’s largest fun run.
Audi Hamilton Island Race Week, 15 – 22 August, QLD
On the edge of the Great Barrier Reef and threading the Whitsundays, welcome to the world’s most picturesque regatta. Enjoy the carnival atmosphere on water and on land, and mix the yachting with fashion, food, golf and wine.
See it because: sailing round the Isle of Wight will never seem the same again.
Photo courtesy of Netball World Cup Website
Know Before You Go
Australia’s sporting festivals are there to be enjoyed, but you’ll enjoy them all the more by following these tips from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office:
- Take out travel insurance: Make sure you are fully covered for unexpected losses or expenses such as missing flights, particularly if you are travelling on ‘discount tickets’. It won’t break the bank and will put your mind at rest!
- Passports: It’s all too easy to lose your passport at an Australian sporting festival, keep it in a secure location ideally behind lock and key. If this isn’t possible, keep it on you securely. Keep a separate record of your passport details, preferably a photocopy of the details pages with next of kin contact details or upload a scan to a secure online safe before you leave.Report lost or stolen passports to the local police immediately.
- Stay secure: Beware of bag and mobile phone snatchers especially in campsites, on the beach, public transport, restaurants, cafés and at the festival. Report the loss of any valuables to the local police and obtain a written police report.
- Drink & drugs: Know your limits. Penalties for drug possession can be severe, with heavy fines or imprisonment. Don’t carry anything through customs for anyone else.
- Visas: Find out what visas are required for your visit. You’ll find advice for every country here, and you can find out more about visas for Australia here.