Kingston and Arthur’s Vale Historic Area is a focal point for many significant celebrations and commemorations on Norfolk Island, including Australia Day, Foundation Day, ANZAC Day, Anniversary (Bounty) Day and Thanksgiving Day.
Australia Day—Public Holiday
26 January, Government House, Kingston
Australia Day celebrates Australia’s rich and diverse culture. The annual event includes the announcement of Australia Day Awards at Government House, Kingston.
Foundation Day—Public Holiday
6 March, Kingston
Foundation Day marks the arrival of Lieutenant Philip Gidley King on 6 March 1788 with a party of first settlers to establish Norfolk Island’s first convict settlement. The event includes a re-enactment of the landing and celebrations strongly linked to traditional activities at Kingston.
ANZAC Day—Public Holiday
25 April, Emily Bay and the Cenotaph, Kingston
Kingston and Arthur’s Vale Historic Area hosts the dawn and morning ANZAC Day services on Norfolk Island.
Bounty Day—Public Holiday
8 June, Kingston
Anniversary (Bounty) Day is a day of celebration on Norfolk Island marking the arrival of settlers from Pitcairn Island on 8 June 1856. The event includes a re-enactment of the landing at Kingston Pier, a picnic highlighting traditional food and other activities.
Bounty Day Picnic — Henry Spencer-Salt, 1935. Source: National Library of Australia (Bib ID 2010819)
Thanksgiving Day—Public Holiday
29 November, Norfolk Island
Norfolk Island celebrates Thanksgiving Day, a tradition linked to the visiting American whalers who would call in to Norfolk Island for water and supplies. Church services and island cooking are central to celebrating Thanksgiving Day.
Government House Open Days
Norfolk Island's historic Government House (1829) is generally not open to the public; however, on a select number of afternoons each year its formal rooms are open to the public.
Information on upcoming Government House open days can be obtained through Norfolk Island Tourism.
Please note that open days may be cancelled or changed at short notice due to operational requirements or bad weather.
Government House and gardens. Photograph: Rob Nisbet