Northern Territory Picnic Day

Observed annually in the Northern Territory of Australia on the first Monday of August, Picnic Day is a holiday that encourages people to head out and enjoy a nice picnic. This holiday has been observed since the 19th century, but the exact date of its first observation has been obscured by time.

Australia’s Northern Territory is a vast federal territory known for its Outback desert landscapes. It is home to approximately 250,000 people and covers a total area of 548,100 square miles. That leaves plenty of space for people to have their own picnic, although many choose the banks of the Adelaide River to enjoy their picnic spread.

The History of Picnic Day in the Northern Territory of Australia

Although it is known that Picnic Day has been observed since the 19th century, no one really knows who started it or why it was started. Of course, there are various rumors about its origins, but as yet, none of those rumors have been verified.

One rumor associated with this holiday is that Chinese railroad workers building the North Australia Railway were granted the right to stay in Australia and they headed down to the Adelaide River for a picnic. This rumor has never been substantiated, and there are no sources that we know of that would verify its veracity.

Observing Picnic Day in the Northern Territory of Australia

Since this holiday is a public holiday and falls on a Monday, many people have a three-day weekend to observe this holiday. While some may choose to enjoy the holiday from home, many will head out to a local park or river to enjoy this holiday.

People not only enjoy picnics on this day but also participate in sporting events, lizard races, and bull riding competitions. There is also a utility truck competition, plenty of children’s games, and the Harts Range annual races. It’s a day to get out into nature and enjoy some fun with friends and family members.

Where is it celebrated?
Australia (State holiday) - Northern territory
When is it?
This year (2024)
August 5 Monday
Next year (2025)
August 4 Monday
Last year (2023)
August 7 Monday