What's on around Australia in October 2014

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We're well into spring and the country is warming up to a wide range of big outdoor events in October. The iconic Ford vs Holden rivalry is on show at the Bathurst 1000, while Canberra's Floriade festival is a celebration of spring. There's also still plenty of footy, with the NRL Grand Final in Sydney and the Rugby Sevens on the Gold Coast.

The Ford vs Holden rivalry resumes at the iconic Bathurst 1000. Photo credit: Flickr, uploaded by user Chris Angelucci.

New South Wales

The intense Ford vs Holden V8 Supercar rivalry resumes at the iconic Bathurst 1000 from October 9 to 12i. Held at the famously unforgiving Mount Panorama race circuit, this event draws thousands of passionate spectatorsii. Off the track, there are plenty of activities to keep the whole family entertained, including memorabilia signing by the Bathurst 1000 drivers and the Saturday Street fair with laser tag, food and market stalls, jumping castles and face paintingiii.

New South Wales also plays host to the National Rugby League Grand Final at Stadium Australia on October 5. The top two NRL teams will battle it out for glory and the historic Provan-Summons Trophyiv.


If the buzz of the Bathurst 1000 leaves you yearning for more motor racing, October 17 to 19 sees the renowned Phillip Island Circuit host the 2014 Australian Motorcycle Grand Prixv. Catch some of motorcycling's biggest names including world champion Marc Marquez, crowd favourite Valentino Rossi and last year's Phillip Island winner Jorge Lorenzov. At end of the racing day, campgrounds on the island offer nightly entertainment such as live music and open air cinemavi.

The renowned Melbourne Festival from October 10 to 26 celebrates the very best in theatre, dance, music, visual arts and film. Opening night starts at the famous Federation Square with a free concert that includes the surprising combination of American techno DJ Jeff Mills and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestravii. The festival includes the circus series at the Arts Centre Melbourne featuring local and international circus companies. Attend to see the circus acts we all know and love reinvented with contemporary choreography, classical music, design and visual effectsviii.


The colourful and fast-paced action of Rugby Sevens comes to the Gold Coast for two jam-packed days on October 11 and 12ix. The tournaments are known for producing some of the most thrilling rugby matches ever seen. Fans get into the spirit of the event, often attending in crazy costumes. The Gold Coast Rugby Sevens is even more significant this year as it is the first rugby sevens qualification event for the 2016 Summer Olympicsix.

For culture buffs, tropical North Queensland holds its well-loved Opera in the Outback series from October 9 to 11. Known as the Undara Experience, the event includes spectacular performances from the greatest Broadway shows, operas and modern-day theatre . Performances start in the late afternoon and are held in the purpose-built Ooramin Place Amphitheatre, accompanied by the picturesque sunset and sparkling night skyxi.

South Australia

The Adelaide Fashion Festival returns for its seventh year to showcase South Australia's unique and inventive fashion industry from October 17 to 26. The festival, apart from displaying fashion from worldwide leading brands and designers, supports young designers by providing them with national exposure in its Emerging Designers Programxii.

A three part long distance event which consists of running and cycling segments, the 2014 Australian Duathlon Championships come to Adelaide on October 19. Successful participants in this event will be selected to make up the Australian team for the 2015 Duathlon World Championships. Predicted to be the biggest duathlon event ever held in South Australia, the race features both junior and senior divisionsxiii. The race is open to everyone, although it is recommended that you undergo a training program involving running and cycling beforehand to ensure that you are race ready on the day.

Western Australia

Perth hosts the richest Australian golf tournament, the Perth International, with a generous US$2million in prize money at stake, from October 23 to 26xiv. This year's event looks very promising after 2013's success, which saw 31,000 spectators as well as worldwide TV coverage to over 421 million homes thanks to a partnership with the European Tourxiv. The setting is idyllic at one of Australia's hilliest golf courses, Lake Karrinyup, which is typically surrounded by flowering eucalyptus trees, native birds and kangaroos that roam around the coursexiv.

The Geraldton-Greenough Sunshine Festival is one of Australia's oldest cultural and family-oriented events, having run for over fifty years. Established in 1958, the festival was originally intended to celebrate the town's local culture, industries and communityxv. From October 4 to 12, this mid-west region festival hosts a wide variety of vibrant events such as the Truck Pull Competition, the magnificent Float Parade and the Sky Show finalexvi.


The Bloomin' Tulips Festival, held on October 11 in Wynyard, Tasmania, celebrates the bright, dazzling colours of the tulip and acacia spring blooms. Featuring a wonderful fireworks display over the Inglis River as well as local art, craft and music, this festival has fun for the whole family to enjoyxvii. Another highlight of the festival is the Colour Fun Run, known locally as the 'Happiest 5k on the Planet', with all funds raised going to BeyondBluexviii.

Northern Territory

The internationally acclaimed Bangarra Dance Theatre celebrates the resilience of Aboriginal Australian culture with their breathtaking performance of Kinship on October 3. Set in Northeast Arnhem Land, it explores the powerful connection between humans and their totems as a reflection of the innate spirituality present in nature . The performance also looks at the contemporary issues facing Aboriginal Australians in the 21st centuryxix.

Northern Territory

The internationally acclaimed Bangarra Dance Theatre celebrates the resilience of Aboriginal Australian culture with their breathtaking performance of Kinship on October 3. Set in Northeast Arnhem Land, it explores the powerful connection between humans and their totems as a reflection of the innate spirituality present in naturexix. The performance also looks at the contemporary issues facing Aboriginal Australians in the 21st centuryxix.

More than a million flowers bloom during Floriade, Australia's biggest flower festival. Photo credit: Wikipedia Commons user Ashishlohorung.

Australian Capital Territory

Spring comes to life in Canberra during Floriade. Australia's biggest flower festival lasts an entire month from September 13 to October 12xx. Now in its 27th year, the immense floral pictures that are created in Commonwealth Park feature more than a million blooming flowers and take 18 months of planning and plantingxx. Apart from the flower displays, the 400,000 plus visitors can enjoy photographic exhibitions and meet some of Australia's most famous and entertaining gardening personalitiesxx.

iV8 Supercars 2014, Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, viewed 7 August 2014,

iiBathurst Regional Council 2014, Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, viewed 7 August 2014,

iiiBathurst Regional Council 2014, Race Week Off-Track Events, viewed 7 August 2014,

ivThe Roar 2014, NRL Grand Final 2014, viewed 8 August 2014,

vVisit Victoria 2014, Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix, viewed 7 August 2014,

viAustralian Grand Prix Corporation 2014, Campground Tickets, viewed 7 August 2014,

viiMihelakos, M 2014, 'Sticky Carpet: From Melbourne Festival to MIFF to saving Tago Mago', Sydney Morning Herald, 31 July, viewed 7 August 2014,

viiiMelbourne Festival 2014, Circus series: An art form in motion, viewed 7 August 2014,

ixGold Coast Tourism 2014, HSBC International Gold Coast Sevens, viewed 7 August 2014,

xUndara 2014, Events, viewed 8 August 2014,

xiTourism and Events Queensland, Queensland Government 2014, Opera in the Outback, viewed 8 August 2014,

xiiAdelaide Fashion Festival 2013, About Us, viewed 8 August 2014,

xiiiEvents South Australia 2014, South Australia Events Calendar, viewed 8 August 2014,

xivTourism Western Australia 2014, Western Australia Events 2014, viewed 8 August 2014,

xvSunshine Festival 2014, About the Festival, viewed 8 August 2014,

xviTourism Western Australia 2014, Geraldton-Greenough Sunshine Festival, viewed 8 August 2014,

xviiBloomin Tulips Festival 2014, What, viewed 8 August 2014,

xviiiBloomin Tulips Festival 2014, Colour Run Coming to Bloomin Tulips Festival, viewed 8 August 2014,

xixThe Darwin Entertainment Centre 2014, Kinship, viewed 8 August 2014,

xxTourism Australia 2014, Floriade, viewed 7 August 2014,