Valentine’s Day in Australia (and around the world) is an annual celebration of love. Although the origins of Saint Valentine himself were far from romantic, the date has become a popular occasion for people looking to cherish their relationship with that special someone. Wondering what to expect from Valentine’s Day in Australia? You’ve come to the right place.
Does Australia celebrate Valentine’s Day?
Yes, definitely! Although the day is not a public holiday, many Australians choose to give a gift, go on a date or embark on a romantic adventure – or all three! – on Valentine’s Day as a celebration of their love. It’s become something of a cultural ritual alongside Christmas gift-giving and chocolate eggs at Easter. However, as with national public holidays, like Australia Day, you’ll find that not all Australians celebrate the occasion.
When is Valentine’s Day in Australia?
Every year, Valentine’s Day in Australia is observed on 14 February, regardless of the day of the week. In 2023, Valentine’s Day falls on a Tuesday. Since it’s tricky for many people to go out and have a proper celebration on a weeknight, many may opt to celebrate the weekend before or the weekend after.
How does Australia celebrate Valentine’s Day?
Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to create new memories with your partner, friends or other loved ones. People gather for picnics in the park, restaurants are booked out for lunch or dinner, and there’s probably more than one rom-com screening at your local cinema.
In shopping centres, you’ll typically see an explosion of red hearts, flowers and other decorations from businesses.
Going on a date is one of the most common Valentine’s Day activities. If you’ve recently arrived in Australia or have just entered the dating scene, check out our handy guide to dating culture in Australia and our list of tell-tale signs you’re dating an Australian (hint: them slabbing Vegemite on everything is usually one of the first!).
Overall, there are no strict rules on how to celebrate Valentine’s Day in Australia. Everyone has their own unique way of showing someone that they love them. Don’t think that you have to splurge on an expensive dinner or gifts to celebrate the holiday. There are a number of exciting and thoughtful ways to enjoy Valentine’s Day on a budget.
Valentine’s Day gift ideas
There’s no shortage of thoughtful (and affordable!) Valentine’s Day gifts you can give, be it to your significant other, flatmate or best friend. Valentine’s Day flowers in Australia are one of the most popular (particularly red roses), along with card, chocolates and/or jewellery.
Buying the right gift can be a nerve-wracking experience, but there’s no need to worry. We’ve compiled a list of the best Valentine’s Day gifts for 2023 to make your shopping experience a whole lot easier. With options for every interest and every budget, you’re guaranteed to find something to spoil that special someone in your life.
If you’re unsure about how much to spend on a present for a loved one on Valentine’s Day (or any occasion during the year), check out our handy gift price guide.
As the cliché goes, it’s the thought that counts, so don’t feel obligated to purchase an expensive gift if you don’t want to.
Valentine’s Day date ideas
You’ve prepared a fantastic gift for your loved one, and you’ve organised to meet for a fun summertime activity – but where do you go?
Outdoors enthusiasts might go on a bushwalk, a road trip, or visit the beach. Alternatively, you may head to a local event such as an art exhibition, a comedy show or a Valentine’s Day market. Other great Valentine’s Day date ideas could include cooking a homemade meal together, trying your luck at an escape room or having an at-home spa night. The most important rule is to be creative and think about what your partner would like!
Need a little extra inspiration? Below, you can check out the best date spots in your city:
Alternatives to celebrating Valentine’s Day
Celebrating Valentine’s Day isn’t compulsory. Some people may not have anyone to celebrate with, and some may choose not to participate. Why not be your own Valentine and treat yourself to a gift or trip away? Or, consider making a donation to help those less fortunate on this day.
In 2023, Valentine’s Day falls near the beginning of the Lunar New Year, which is celebrated across East and Southeast Asia. In Australia, festivals, concerts and virtual events in honour of the new year in Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese cultures are held in capital cities across the country and are a great alternative to participating in Valentine’s Day.