Read about the origin, history and celebration of Halloween in Australia.
Fundoo Times: Festivals: Halloween: Halloween in Australia

Halloween in Australia

Origin and History of Halloween in Australia

Halloween is a pagan festival that celebrated over 2000 years ago. This pagan holiday was known as Samhain, a harvest festival which was celebrated with huge bonfires to mark the end of the Celtic year and the beginning of the New Year. Celtics believed that dead souls roamed the streets at night. Thus on the Samhain day they used to leave gifts and sweets outside to please the evil spirits. They also prayed for good crops for the approaching year. With the popularity of Christianity the Orthodox Church decided to honor the dead souls of saints by observing All Saintsí Day on November 1st. The day before this, was called All Hallows Eve which later became famous as Halloween. The traditions and customs followed on this day are similar to Samhain.

Local name: Halloween

Ways to celeberate Halloween in Australia

Until recently in Australia Halloween was just an excuse for some people to watch horror movies. During this time cinemas organized special screening of horror movies with the popularity of the celebration. Halloween became a famous observation in recent years. Although is not observed as a national holiday, people enjoy the celebration during evening. Shops and other places sold Halloween themed dresses and other items thus it has become a profitable season during the year. Nowadays special Halloween events, parades and parties are held to make the day enjoyable. Halloween parties are organized at venues which look haunted. Ghost tours, hunts and walks in the artificial haunted places are popular during this time. Most of the Australians take part in the popular Halloween game called trick- or- treat. Groups of people visit homes of neighbors and demand for treat if they donít give treat they are forced to act a trick.