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Shemini Atzeret 2024 in Australia

Many Jewish communities in Australia celebrate Shemini Atzeret (or Shmini Atzeret) and Simchat Torah. Shemini Atzeret is a Jewish holiday dedicated to the love of God. Simchat Torah marks the end of the Sukkot (or Sukkoth) festival.

Is Shemini Atzeret a Public Holiday?

Although Shemini Atzeret is not a public holiday, businesses and schools may be closed because it falls on the same date as Royal Hobart Show in 2024, which is a public holiday in Tasmania.

Shmini Atzeret and Simchat Torah activities include Torah readings.

©iStockphoto.com/Robert Simon

What Do People Do?

Shemini Atzeret is the holiday that follows immediately after the seventh day of Sukkot, known as Hoshana Rabbah. Shemini Atzeret is a time when prayers or celebrations for rain and a good harvest are made for the coming year in the Jewish calendar.

Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah are recorded in many calendars for educators to mark. Some teachers teach their classes about Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah around this time of the year.

Public Life

Many Jewish communities in Australia observe Shemini Atzeret on one day and Simchat Torah on the following day. These days are not nationwide public holidays in Australia but some Jewish organizations may be closed or offer a limited service to allow for festivities to occur on this day.


The name "Shmini Atzeret" refers to the eighth day, or the extra day, that brings the seven-day Sukkot period to its state of perfection. Rabbinic tradition teaches that Shemini Atzeret is the day when the world is judged for water, or rainfall, in the upcoming year. It is an important day for agricultural purposes.

Simchat Torah is generally celebrated on the same day as Shemini Atzeret in Israel and among Reform Jewish groups. These two occasions are also observed as two separate days among many Jewish communities outside of Israel.

Jewish Holidays Last Longer Outside of Israel

In the Jewish diaspora—Jewish communities outside of Israel—an extra day is usually added to religious observances, with the exception of Yom Kippur, which lasts only one day worldwide, and Rosh Hashana, which is celebrated over two days in both Israel and the diaspora.

This custom has its roots in ancient times when the beginning of the months in the Jewish calendar still relied on the sighting of the crescent Moon following a New Moon.

The beginning of a new month was determined by the Sanhedrin, the supreme court of ancient Israel in Jerusalem. Once the date was published, messengers were dispatched to spread the news among Jews living abroad. Since this process took some time, it was decreed that Jews outside of ancient Israel were to observe every holiday for 2 days to make sure that the rules and customs applicable to each holiday were observed on the proper date. This rule is still observed today.

About Shemini Atzeret in Other Countries

Read more about Shemini Atzeret.

Shemini Atzeret Observances

Note: Jewish holidays begin at sundown the day before the date specified for the holiday.

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2019MonOct 21Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2020SatOct 10Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2021TueSep 28Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2022MonOct 17Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2023SatOct 7Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2024ThuOct 24Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2025TueOct 14Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2026SatOct 3Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2027SatOct 23Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2028ThuOct 12Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday
2029MonOct 1Shemini AtzeretJewish holiday

While we diligently research and update our holiday dates, some of the information in the table above may be preliminary. If you find an error, please let us know.