HomeAustraliaFrom the beaches to the streets, Australians again mark January 26 in...

From the beaches to the streets, Australians again mark January 26 in different ways

From bathing at the beaches to protesting on the streets, millions of Australians are again marking January 26 in different ways.

Temperatures have soared for most of the country above 30C, except for Melbourne and Hobart, meaning Aussies have flocked to the beach to soak up the sun.

Australia Day is a divided public holiday across the country with some calling for the date to be changed and demanding this through protests while others flock to beaches and parks to mark the day with friends and family

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Country divided over how to spend Australia Day

Here is how Australians across the country have spent the day.

Sydneysiders saw two different ways of marking the day from thousands attending the Invasion Day march between Belmore Park and Victoria Park.

Others flocked to popular beaches like the iconic Bondi where there was barely a free speck of sand.

Sydney Harbour on Australia Day.
Sydney Harbour filled with boats on Australia Day. (9News)
Australia Day protests in the Sydney CBD (Nine)

The annual Ferrython took to the harbour with flecks of white racing through the blue ocean, the Tall Ships race with old boats and then the harbour parade.

A live concert will be held this evening.

Earlier in the day, the sails of the Sydney Opera House were illuminated with artwork depicting and honouring stories of the Gadigal women of the Eora nation.

After first light, both the Australian flag and Aboriginal Australian flag were raised together on top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Barely a spare spot on the sand at Bondi Beach in Sydney. (Nine)
The Tall Ships race through Sydney Harbour on Australia Day.
The Tall Ships race through Sydney Harbour on Australia Day. (9News)

Kamilaroi woman and artist Rhonda Sampson from western Sydney was commissioned to create the artwork Diyan Warrane for the display on the Opera House sails.

The artwork represents the important role of First Nations’ women around the waters of Warrane (Sydney Harbour).

Indigenous art was displayed on the sails of the Sydney Opera House to kick off Australia Day. (Salty Dingo)

The artwork honours four celebrated women of the Gadigal people, Boorong, Patygerang, Daringa, and Barangaroo, who were all very skilled fisherwomen with their own unique individual stories and contributions.

“The harbour has always been integral to the everyday lives of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation and it’s important we continue to share their stories. It is important will listen,” Sampson said.

In Melbourne, meanwhile, the city had a more subdued marking of the national day.

Police set up surveillance cameras around a statue in St Kilda of James Cook, who charted and claimed Australia’s eastern seaboard for Britain in 1770.

Last year, the memorial was vandalised with red paint.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 26: Protesters participate in the Treaty Before Voice Invasion Day Protest outside Parliament House on January 26, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia.
Protesters participate in the Treaty Before Voice Invasion Day Protest outside Victoria’s Parliament House on January 26, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia. (Getty)

An Invasion Day protest marched through the streets of Melbourne, where there a 21-gun salute was also held alongside entertainment at Federation Square.

Thousands attended the Invasion Day March in Melbourne.

In the country’s capital, Canberrans also took to the streets for an Invasion Day protest.

Canberra hosted a community BBQ at Regatta Point and official ceremonies like the National Citizenship and Flag Raising ceremony.

A gun salute at the citizenship ceremony in Canberra. (9News)
Australia Day protests through Canberra. (Nine)

Brisbane’s Australia Day began with a candle light dawn service in Musgrave Park followed by a flag raising at Jagera Hall.

There was also an Invasion Day march from Queens Park through the city.

Australia Day 2023 in Gold Coast, Queensland.
Hundreds flock to the Gold Coast to spend the day at the beach. (9News)
Australia Day 2023 in Gold Coast, Queensland.
The beach is full of tents at the Gold Coast. (9News)

Beaches were bustling on the Gold Coast as the mercury rose well above 30C.

There were boat parties with dozens piled on the tiny vessels and jetskis shooting through the water.

South Australia’s main celebration was an annual concert, firework display and parade held last night on January 25.

The state is the first to hold official events on January 25 as a sign of solidarity to make a day for those on each side of the divide.

A firework display will also be held tonight in Adelaide.

Like many other states and territories, a citizenship ceremony was held at Adelaide Town Hall where 80 people from dozens of different countries became citizens.

Other ways to mark the day included the Jetty to Jetty swim, a 2.2km dash at Grange Jetty, and the Respecting Country Parade at Elder Park from 6pm.

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