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Group of travellers in front of Sydney Harbour in Australia

Australian Stereotypes: Fiction or True Blue?

Traveller in Nice in the South of France

By Caitlin Spouge

Last updated: 5th February 2024

Here at Gap 360, we seriously love Australia. Not only is it one of our most popular destinations with our travellers, many of us have visited, and we even have a few Aussies working here in our UK office. Like most destinations, there are plenty of Australian stereotypes flying around. Whilst some are true blue (which means true to Australia), others are just straight-up fiction. Keep reading to find out the truth behind these classic Australian stereotypes so you’re prepared for your adventure Down Under! 

1. Kangaroos Are Everywhere

Kangaroo in the wild in Australia

Many believe the stars of Australia, Kangaroos, are just roaming in Aussie cities, and everyone just has them living in their gardens. There is even a stereotype that Australians ride kangaroos to school?! Kangaroos are super adorable, but they are wild animals that are best left alone. You will likely see kangaroos in the outback and not wild in the cities. If you want to get to know this adorable wildlife, book our Wildlife Volunteering in Australia and make a new Kangaroo best friend. You’ll also get to meet Australia’s other main character, Koalas! 

Verdict: ❌   

2. Dangerous Animals 

Snake in the wild in Australia

One of the most common Australian stereotypes is Down Under is that there will be deadly spiders, snakes, and crocodiles everywhere. However, many who travel to Australia say they didn’t see any dangerous animals at all. This is because the country is huge! As in, it's 32 times bigger than the UK type-huge. The chances of encountering this wildlife in metropolitan cities like Sydney and Melbourne are very slim. Don’t let this fear stop you from missing out on the incredible experiences in Australia. 

Plus, Australia is also a haven for adorable wildlife! Ever heard of a quokka? Also known as the happiest animal on earth, Quokkas are just one example of the many amazing animals you’ll get to meet when adventuring in Australia. You’ll get to see quokkas in their natural habitat on Rottnest Island, which we visit on our Western Australia Adventure group trip.

Verdict: ❌ 

3. It’s Always Hot 

Group of travellers enjoying the sun in front of Lake Mckenzie on a trip to K'Gari in Australia

One of the best things about travelling to Australia is swapping out the UK’s grey winters for the glorious summer in the Southern Hemisphere. There’s simply nothing better than hopping on a plane when it’s cold and raining, then touching down in the unbeatable sunshine and heading straight to the beach! There is a reason why our Australian East Coast Adventure (link) group trip sells out so quickly for November, December, January and February start dates. In Sydney, you’ll enjoy temperatures of at least 25℃, and it only gets hotter as you travel North to Queensland! 

It is important to remember that Australia does also have seasons, so our summer is their winter. Winter Down Under is generally not as cold or wet as here in the UK, but it can be a little more chilly, and the country is not immune to rain - contrary to popular belief! You can expect temperatures in popular, southern locations, like Melbourne, to be around 8℃ in winter. 

Queensland averages about 16℃ in winter and Darwin at 20℃, so still pretty warm. A benefit of travelling during Aussie winter is popular spots are much quieter and still just as incredible.  

Verdict: ❌  

4. Aussie’s Love Slang 

Surfers relaxing on Smiths Beach in Western Australia

If you think you’re equipped with all the Aussie slang you need, think again! Australians are constantly filling their conversations with slang. These words and phrases are much more than the basic “G’Day”. Whilst some Australian slang is the same as us Brits, they do have a few unique terms of their own. This Australian stereotype rings true, so here is some slang that you might just need to learn for your future conversations with the locals:

Daks - Trousers

No wuckas - No problem 

Servo - Service/ Gas station 

Bloody oath - Of course

Bludger - Lazy person 

Woop Woop - A place in the middle of nowhere 

Fair Dinkum - Genuine / True

Verdict: ✅ 

5. “Shrimp on the Barbie”

Australians slipping a shrimp on the barbie

Is this a classic Australian saying? “Shrimp on the Barbie” was popularised by Crocodile Dundee star, Paul Hogan, who was encouraging Americans to make the trip Down Under. Interestingly, Australians don’t even say “shrimp”, they say “prawns”. If you say this catchphrase to an Aussie, don’t be surprised if you’re met with an eye-roll in return. 

Verdict: ❌ 

6. Australian's Love Vegemite

A hand holding a jar of the popular yeast spread, Vegemite

Vegemite was made as Australia’s equivalent to Marmite but now, Aussies much prefer the former! Vegemite far outsells Marmite and has become synonymous with Australian food, with fans spread across the country. In fact, you will discover this famous spread in 9 out of 10 Australian’s cupboards. Meanwhile, it has gained a pretty infamous rep in countries like America, where it is listed as one of the most disgusting foods. Whilst you will find some people putting Vegemite on their breakfast, lunch and dinner, naturally, some Aussies aren’t a fan. On the whole, though, this Australian stereotype holds pretty true!

Verdict: ✅ 

7. Good Coffee 

Coffee in an Australian cafe in Melbourne

Coffee lovers will be in their element when exploring Australia. This Australian stereotype came about as coffee is so ingrained in the lifestyle Down Under, and you’ll find that Aussies can’t help but brag about how delicious their coffee is. This high-quality coffee came to the country after a huge wave of Italian immigrants moved over and taught Aussies how to appreciate a great coffee culture. This also means lots of delicious Italian food, so make sure to pack your eating trousers! Melbourne is now rated as having the best coffee in the world. Check out a few coffee bars and see if it’s up to your standard on our Melbourne Intro group trip. 

Verdict: ✅  

8. You Only Need To Visit Sydney 

Sydney Harbour and Sydney Opera House

We’ll be the first to tell you that Sydney is a must-visit destination. A trip to Australia wouldn’t be complete without a picture in front of the Sydney Opera House! However, there is much more to explore beyond this popular city. In New South Wales alone, there are 892 dreamy beaches for you to visit - that’s a lot of day trips from Sydney!

It is common for travellers to touch down in Sydney and then make their way up the stunning Australian East Coast. After you’ve ticked this off your bucket list and inevitably fallen in love with the country, consider continuing your adventure Down Under. On our Outback Adventure group trip, you will trek through breathtaking national parks and see the one-and-only Uluru. Experiences like these are extra special as you’ll learn about important Aboriginal culture and listen to stories of the land. 

Verdict: ❌ 

 

Now that you’ve learnt which Australian stereotypes are fiction and which are true blue, it’s time to make the trip and see for yourself if we were right! Browse all of our Australia trips and add your favourites to your wishlist to start making the Aussie dream your reality. 

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