If you’re not from down under and have come here to start life anew, Australia could seem like a bizarre place. And let’s face it: Australian’s have never had a reputation for taking life too seriously. Maybe that’s why there are so many quirky, strange and downright odd events going on year-round throughout the country.

If you have a thirst for the slightly peculiar and want to see a side of Australia that many won’t have ever seen, here’s a calendar of peculiar events and festivals that you probably won’t find anywhere else:


Crab Racing , Sydney NSW – regular event

It’s a simple sport: paint numbers on a bucketful of crabs, put them in the middle of a round table, and the first one to scuttle to the edge is the winner. Crab racing is popular in bars around Sydney, with the most famous and long-running weekly events at the Friend in Hand and Scubar.

Crab racing in Sydney. #crabracing #Sydney #iwon

A post shared by Bruce Greene (@brucegreene4) on


Cockroach Races, Brisbane QLD – 26 January 2017

Don’t let a few creepy-crawlies put you off a day at the races! Held at the Story Bridge Hotel, this annual event features a programme of 14 races, a Miss Cocky Competition and awards for the best team costume. According to legend, the event originated the way all great traditions do – as a way to settle an argument in a bar.

Find out more at www.cockroachraces.com.au

Australia day – Traditional cockroach race #australia#australiaday#cockroach#cockroachraces#aussielife#holiday#brisbane

A post shared by Alessandro Falvella Cordeiro (@alessandrofalvella) on


Tuna Toss, Port Lincoln SA –  26 & 28 January 2017

You know those days when you really just want to throw a 10kg fish as far as you can? You’re in luck – the Port Lincoln Tuna Toss is exactly that. As part of Port Lincoln’s Tunarama Festival, it’s been running for nearly 40 years and has attracted Australia’s Olympic hammer throwers, including Sean Carlin and Brooke Krueger.

Find out more at www.tunarama.net 


Darwin Beer Can Regatta, Darwin, NT – 9 July  2017

With a history stretching back over 40 years, the Darwin Beer Can Regatta sees teams of competitors build and sail boats made primarily from beer cans – most of which are about as seaworthy as you’d expect. Flour bombs, water cannons and sabotage between teams aren’t just commonplace – they’re a vital part of the strategy.

Find out more at beercanregatta.org.au


Camel Cup, Alice Springs NT – 15 July 2017

Camels helped to build Alice Springs, and it’s only fitting that today they’re celebrated in one of the town’s biggest annual events – a high-speed race through Blatherskite Park. Rickshaw races, belly dancers and, of course, plentiful food and drink are all part of the festivities.

Find out more at www.camelcup.com.au


Dachshund Races, Melbourne VIC – September 2017

Speed, grace, determination – none of these are qualities typically attributed to the dachshund, which is probably why most people don’t race them. But as this part of Hophaus’ Oktoberfest celebrations shows, maybe they should. Proceeds from the tiny-legged race go to Dachshund Rescue Australia, so you don’t even have to feel guilty for laughing.

Find out more hophaus.com.au


Dunny Derby, Winton QLD –  23 September  2017

From opera to dunny racing – Queensland’s outback truly has it all. The annual thunderbox race sees one ‘jockey’ take pride of place on the throne while two team-mates pull them through a 200m obstacle course. And if racing toilets isn’t your thing, you can try your hand at egg throwing, whip cracking and dozens more events at the Outback Festival.

Find out more at www.outbackfestival.com.au


Wife-carrying Championships, Singleton NSW – October 2017

With its origins in Finland, the noble sport of wife-carrying is just how it sounds: men carry their wives across a fast-paced obstacle course, leaping fences, wading through water hazards and stumbling over sand. Competitors whose wives weigh less than 49kg have to bring their own weights to make things fair.

Find out more at www.singletonshow.com


Opera in the Outback, Undara QLD – 5-7 October 2017

High culture sometimes comes to unexpected places, and this event in Undara National Park is living proof. Every year, a troupe of performers assemble to stage an opera in a natural amphitheatre – and it may be the only one you ever see whose spectators include the occasional kangaroo.

Find out more at www.undara.com.au


If you’ve just moved to Australia and want to explore the wonders of this curious country, make the most of your money by speaking to a World First Currency Specialist who could help you with the all-important (and sometimes scary!) job of transferring your funds across to set up your new life.

World First are international money transfer specialists that could help you get better exchange rates and assist with seamless bank-to-bank transfers, so you know the exchange rate you are getting and what you’ll receive at the other end. We’re also one of the few 5-star rated Australian providers awarded  ‘Outstanding Value in International Money Transfers’ by CANSTAR, Australasia’s leading consumer finance ratings company.

Speak with a World First currency specialist on 1800 744 777 or visit us at worldfirst.com.au

For more tips on moving and settling into life in Australia, follow World First on Facebook.







These comments are the views and opinions of the author and should not be construed as advice. You should act using your own information and judgement. Whilst information has been obtained from and is based upon multiple sources the author believes to be reliable, we do not guarantee its accuracy and it may be incomplete or condensed.

All opinions and estimates constitute the author’s own judgement as of the date of the briefing and are subject to change without notice.

Please consider FX derivatives are high risk, provide volatile returns and do not guarantee profits.

We have no commercial affiliation or commercial interest regarding the events mentioned in this article. The information is only provided as gathered and should be verified before, using your own judgement.