May Day celebrates all the same things as Labour Day - including workers - securing the right for an eight-hour day (reserving time for eight hours of recreation and eight hours of sleep) and a better work/life balance. Festivities are held at other times of year in different parts of Australia. Melbourne and Tasmania celebrate on the second Monday in March, Perth and Western Australia celebrate on the first Monday in March, and New South Wales and South Australia celebrate on the first Monday in October.
In Darwin, May Day is a festive occasion. This is the most populated city in the Northern Territory and each year workers march by the hundreds to celebrate their rights. Holding flags, workers from a variety of industries come together for this annual parade. Crowds gather not only to watch the march but also to enjoy entertainment such as live music performances along with food and drinks.
In addition to public celebrations, May Day is also a day of rest. Locals spend time with family and friends, enjoying a barbecue or big meal. Darwin also has a reputation for nightlife along Mitchell Street for those people looking for a little holiday revelry. Some bars might offer specials in honour of May Day (both on the weekend before and the holiday itself). Not all businesses and stores will open for full hours (or at all) during this holiday weekend, so be prepared for some closures.
Other Things to Do in Darwin
Beyond marches and nightlife, there are other things to do in Darwin for people planning a visit during May Day weekend. Darwin is known for its Mindil Markets. These markets - open both on weekend mornings and at night - are a fun place to browse (though they can be crowded at times).
People looking to relax might want to find a great local spot to take in the sunset. The coastline here is full of them, but one of the best is the East Point Reserve. People who keep their eyes out might even notice a few wallabies keeping them company during a visit here.
The holiday weekend of May Day is a popular one for travel. Be sure to plan ahead and investigate holiday rentals in advance. There are a variety of rentals available with amenities that can make your trip special from a big chef's kitchen to a big-screen TV for a family movie night. When you choose a rental, each member of your family will have their own space and privacy, ensuring a peaceful and relaxing May Day getaway.
(photo courtesy of MICDS Photographer)