Queen's Birthday in Australia

The Queen's Birthday is an Australian public holiday but the date varies across states and territories. Australia celebrates this holiday because it is a constitutional monarchy, with the English monarch as head of state.

Queen´s Official birthday Australia
Australia's present monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, whose birthday is celebrated nationwide.
Australia's present monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, whose birthday is celebrated nationwide.
©iStockphoto.com/David Newton

Celebrate the Queen's Birthday

Many Australians have a day off work on the Queen's Birthday. For many, it is a chance to do something with their family or to visit a sporting event. Some people take advantage of the three-day weekend to make trips to visit friends or relatives.

Some well-known sporting events are held on the second Monday of June. These include an Australian Football League game played at the Melbourne cricket club between the Collingwood Magpies and the Melbourne Demons. It is also traditionally seen as the opening weekend of the snow season in Australia, although it is often not possible to really ski for another few weeks.

Traditionally, many public fireworks displays were organized on the Queen's Birthday. However, these have been overshadowed by the New Year's Eve displays in recent years. People in many communities can only buy and set off fireworks on the Saturday, Sunday and Monday of the Queen's Birthday weekend in the Australian Capital Territory. This is illegal at all other times of the year.

Public Life

The Queen's Birthday is observed on the second Monday of June in most of Australia. Schools, post offices, and other organizations are closed in most parts of Australia, except Western Australia, on this date. Stores that are open may have restricted opening hours. There may be some congestion on roads as many people use the long weekend to make trips. Public transport services may be reduced or not run at all.

The Queen's Birthday is a holiday in Western Australia at a different date to that observed by other parts of the country. The governor in Western Australia proclaims the holiday's date for this state. There are no fast rules about when it will fall but it is often on the last Monday of September or the first Monday of October. Western Australian schools, post offices, as well as many organizations, are closed when Western Australia celebrates the Queen's Birthday. Stores that are open may have restricted opening hours in the state. There may be some congestion on roads as many people use the long weekend to make trips. Public transport services may be reduced or not run at all.

About the Queen's Birthday

Australia is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations and the official head of state is the Monarch of the Realms. This is currently Queen Elizabeth II. She is also the head of state of many other countries and territories, including Great Britain, Northern Ireland, Canada and New Zealand. She was born on April 21, 1926, although her official birthday is celebrated on a range of dates in the different countries of the Commonwealth of Nations.

The Monarch's Birthday was first celebrated in Australia in 1788. In that year, King George III was the Monarch and Governor Arthur Phillip declared a holiday to mark his birthday. Originally, the Monarch's birthday was celebrated on the anniversary of the actual date of birth of the King or Queen. However, after the death of King George V in 1936, the date remained close to his birthday, which was June 3.

On the second Monday in June, the Queen's Birthday honors list is released. This contains the names of the new members of the Order of Australia and other honors issued by the Australian government or the Queen. These are generally for exceptional service to Australians, Australia or humanity as a whole.

About Queen's Birthday in other countries

Read more about Queen's Birthday.

Queen's Birthday Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday TypeWhere it is Observed
MonJun 142010Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except WA
MonSep 272010Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonJun 132011Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except WA
FriOct 282011Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonJun 112012Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except Qld, WA
MonOct 12012Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonOct 12012Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayQueensland
MonJun 102013Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except WA
MonSep 302013Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonJun 92014Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except WA
MonSep 292014Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonJun 82015Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except WA
MonSep 282015Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonJun 132016Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except Qld, WA
MonSep 262016Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonOct 32016Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayQueensland
MonJun 122017Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except Qld, WA
MonOct 22017Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayQueensland
MonOct 22017Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonJun 112018Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except Qld, WA
MonOct 12018Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonOct 12018Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayQueensland
MonJun 102019Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except Qld, WA
MonSep 302019Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonOct 72019Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayQueensland
MonJun 82020Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayAll except Qld, WA
MonSep 282020Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayWestern Australia
MonOct 52020Queen's BirthdayCommon State holidayQueensland

Quick Facts

Many Australians celebrate the Queen's Birthday each year, as Australia is a constitutional monarchy.

Queen's Birthday 2016

Monday, June 13, 2016 (All except Queensland, Western Australia)
Monday, September 26, 2016 (Western Australia)
Monday, October 3, 2016 (Queensland)

Queen's Birthday 2017

Monday, June 12, 2017 (All except Queensland, Western Australia)
Monday, October 2, 2017 (Queensland)
Monday, October 2, 2017 (Western Australia)

Name in other languages

NameLanguage
Queen's BirthdayEnglish
Queen's BirthdayGerman

Alternative name

Volunteer's Day (South Australia)

List of dates for other years

Other holidays in October 2016 in Australia

United Nation Holiday on October 3, 2016

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