Fathers Day in Australia: 2021 and beyond

Father's Day in Australia

Fathers Day in Australia is an important holiday, when families honour and celebrate fathers and father figures.

The information provided on this page outlines everything you need to know about Fathers Day in Australia for 2021 and beyond. Plus, get inspired to plan a rewarding Fathers Day with your family and learn how to shop for the perfect Fathers Day gift.

fathers day in australia

When is Fathers Day held in Australia?

Fathers Day in Australia is observed on the first Sunday of September each calendar year.

The table below lists out Fathers Day 2021 – 2022 dates of observance:

2021Sunday, 5th September
2022Sunday, 4th September

Fathers Day in Australia dates for the previous five years (2015 to 2020) are set out in the table below:

2020Sunday, 6th September
2019Sunday, 1st September
2018Sunday, 2nd September
2017Sunday, 3rd September
2016Sunday, 4th September
2015Sunday, 6th September

In Australia, Fathers Day is timed to coincide with Spring’s onset. This provides an excellent opportunity to embrace the outdoors with family and to purchase customized Fathers Day gifts like fishing, camping, and sporting items.

Fathers Day gift ideas

Giving gifts is an important part of Fathers Day for many families.

Australia boasts a diverse and vibrant culture, and there are many special gifts you could buy for Fathers Day in 2021. Get inspired to find the perfect present with our list below:

Personalised photo book: Curate a personalised photo book and Fill it with happy snaps and memorable moments that your father hold’s dear

Camping items: With Fathers Day timed to be observed at the start of Spring, why not consider treating dad to a camping gift? Camping is popular in Australia, and Fathers Day could provide the perfect chance to get the family sleeping under the stars. Depending on your budget, you could choose a small item like a torch or camping tools. With a bigger budget, consider splashing out on a tent or swag.

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Cologne: Many fathers like cologne. With a wide range of scents and brands on offer, you can choose the right one to fit your budget.

Sporting goods: Sport is big in Australia, and many father figures participate. Whether it’s a tennis racquet, golf caddy or even a new football, there are many items you could purchase to reward your dad.

A watch: If you have a significant budget set aside for a Fathers Day gift, consider splurging on an impressive gift like a watch. A watch makes for a popular Fathers Day gift that is designed to impress. There are many brands to choose from, all at different price points.

Power tools: Many fathers spend time in the garage or fixing things around the house or playing with new electrical gadgets. Whether it’s a leaf blower, a chainsaw or a new hammer, a power tool could be a very well-received gift.

Some other generic gift ideas include clothing, food baskets, surprise dessert, gift vouchers, or equipment to suit individual hobbies. There are many other gift ideas for Fathers Day, which encompass customised and personalised items. 

The gift you choose to purchase on Fathers Day is a personal choice. Consider investing in a thoughtful present that will be appreciated, whether that’s a meal out or a tangible gift.

If you can’t afford a Fathers Day gift, don’t fret. There are other ways to celebrate the father figure in your life and ensure they feel honoured and appreciated. After all, in the end, celebrating Fathers Day in 2021 and beyond is not about the gift, but rather, the intentions behind it.

fathers day in australia

Things to do on Fathers Day in Australia

If you are looking for ideas to plan your Fathers Day in 2021, then read on.

Fathers Day is one of the most widely observed holidays in Australia. As it takes place at the beginning of Spring, there are many different activities and events to enjoy – many of them taking place outdoors.

Below, we’ve listed out seven inspiring things to do on Fathers Day in Australia. Read on to discover activities and events for your next Fathers Day celebration:

  1. Head out for a meal: Book a restaurant or cafe and treat your father to a family lunch or dinner. Be sure to book ahead, as Fathers Day is an extremely busy day.
  2. Organise a picnic: September is a wonderful time to enjoy a picnic in the outdoors. Throw together some refreshments and make time to catch up with friends and family outside. Head to a national park, a nature reserve, or even to the beach.
  3. Go for a hike: Australia is a diverse country with many unique landscapes. All states and territories boast excellent options for a day walk – whether it’s an all-day effort or just a stroll. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture all the memories on a lens
  4. Head to the pub: Many pubs are family-friendly, and they often put on special menus to celebrate Fathers Day. Treat dad to a pint or even a meal.
  5. Visit a cultural institution: Fathers Day is a great opportunity to visit a museum or gallery. Depending on your family’s preference, you could visit the art gallery, museum, or even the zoo.
  6. Go to the movies: Many films are timed for release around Fathers Day. Whether it’s an action film, an arthouse flick or a comedy, you’ll have plenty of titles to choose from.
  7. Make something: Turn your Fathers Day celebration into a craft session. Small children will enjoy making dad a gift he will treasure – consider a handmade card, an ornament, or a collage.
  8. Do something adventurous: Australia offers many unique experiences and adventures to get the blood pumping. Consider treating dad to quad biking, abseiling, or even swimming with sharks!

Whatever you choose to do with your father figure on this special day, he’s sure to appreciate the effort you’ve gone to.

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What things are open on Fathers Day?

As Fathers Day falls on a Sunday in Australia, many public services are closed. However, restaurants, shopping precincts, entertainment venues and cafes will typically be open for business. Public transport systems also offer a weekend schedule. If you are considering taking a day trip on Fathers Day, be sure to plan ahead, as public amenities tend to be busier than usual. This is particularly the case for large cities like Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

fathers day in australia

What is Fathers Day?

As a globally recognised holiday, Fathers Day grows in popularity each and every year. On this special day, people in hundreds of countries around the world take time out to celebrate fathers, father figures and fatherhood. Fathers Day dates differ around the world. Typically, this holiday is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday of June each calendar year.

In Australia, celebrations are not just limited to fathers. Rather, they also extend more broadly to father figures such as fathers-in-law, guardians and foster parents, grandfathers and even uncles.

What is the History of Fathers Day?

The concept of honouring fatherhood and father figures dates back to the United States in the early 20th Century. Sonora Smart Dodd was the original founder of Fathers Day. She was inspired to form this special event after listening to a Mother’s Day sermon by Anna Jarvis, the American woman who came up with the idea of Mother’s Day.

Dodd had a good relationship with her father, William Jackson Smart, who had raised six children as a single parent. The commitment shown by her father motivated Dodd to strongly advocate for Fathers Day.

The very first time Fathers Day was celebrated 19th June 1910, the third Sunday in June.

Later, the celebrations spread beyond North America, growing in popularity in other significant parts of the world.

Is Fathers Day a public holiday in Australia?

Fathers Day isn’t an official public holiday in Australia. That said because the holiday falls on the weekend each year, a large proportion of the population is able to celebrate it.

Fathers Day typically falls inside the school term for most Australian states and territories.

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Global Fathers Day observances

Fathers Day isn’t recognised as an official public holiday in many countries around the world. Thailand presents a rare exception; Since Fathers Day in this country coincides with the King’s Birthday, an official public holiday is observed.

Interesting facts about Fathers Day Date

There are plenty of interesting facts about Fathers Day in Australia and further afield. Below, we’ve listed out some intriguing things to know:

  • Australia celebrates more than 4.6 million fathers (and there are plenty more father figures)
  • Every year, Australia spends approximately $1.36 billion and $660 million on Mother’s Day and Fathers Day, respectively!
  • Fathers Day in Australia became popular during World War II, coinciding with a time when many fathers went away to war.
  • The traditional Fathers Day flower is a rose. Fathers who are dead receive white roses, whereas those alive receive red roses. Those who don’t have fathers can still honor the special males in their lives during Fathers Day. It may be your spouse, friend, relative, coach, or teacher. 
  • In the 1920s and 1930s, there was a suggestion to merge Fathers Day with Mother’s Day to Parent’s Day.
  • Sales statistics show that 50% of Fathers Day card purchases are often carried out by children (daughters and sons). Wives purchase 20% of these cards. The remaining percentage of cards go to sons, grandfathers, uncles, brothers.

Holidays which are similar to Fathers Day

Fathers Day is considered to be a significant day on the Australian calendar. However, it is not an official public holiday. Other nationally recognised days that are not public holidays include Valentine’s Day and Remembrance Day.

Mother’s Day is also held in Australia each May to celebrate mothers and mother figures.

Fathers Day 2020 and Covid-19

As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, many Australian states and territories are facing restrictions on travel and gatherings. As a result, the way we celebrate Fathers Day in Australia is likely to be different.

With the curfews and lockdowns that may adversely affect Fathers Day 2020, some families may be restricted from physically gathering. However, whatever your circumstances, it’s still possible to celebrate Fathers Day in 2020, be it virtually or in person.

Fathers Day in Australia: Conclusion

Fathers Day is an opportunity for families to show love and thanks to the father figure in their life for being a role model, teachers, friend and carer.

As we’ve demonstrated in this article, there are many ways for Australians to embrace Fathers Day. 

Fathers Day Frequently Asked Questions

Is Fathers Day a public holiday in Australia?

No, Fathers Day in Australia is not a public holiday. As it is held on a Sunday, most families have the opportunity to celebrate it.

When is Fathers Day in 2021?

Fathers 2021 takes place on 5th September 2021. Fathers Day is observed on the first Sunday of September each calendar year.

What is the best gift for Fathers Day?

Fathers Day in Australia is held in early spring, providing an excellent opportunity to treat your dad to something he can use in the outdoors. Consider gifting him camping items, an adventure tour, or a sporting item.

Do the shops open on Fathers Day?

Yes. As Fathers Day in Australia is not an official public holiday, shops and services observe normal Sunday trading hours.