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What's on - Top events around Australia (December 2017)

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Amanda Kendle 17 November 2017

Summer is well and truly here and there are heaps of great outdoor festivals and activities happening around Australia during December, as well as a few ways to celebrate Christmas and the New Year.

Red Bull Lighthouse to Leighton, 9 December

Come and see the number one kite-boarding race in the whole of the summer hemisphere! Starting off at Rottnest Island and coming in to finish at Leighton Beach, Fremantle, the beach is a great place to be to cheer the boarders on and see this colourful spectacular.

Adelaide Motorsport Festival, 7-10 December

For all motorsport fans, this festival includes a huge variety of activities, from the races themselves to static car and motorbike displays, live music, Scalextric model car races and activities set up by various manufacturers too. There are rally and sprint events throughout the festival and a range of choices for great spectator fun.

The Big Design Market, 1-3 December

Head to the Royal Exhibition Building for the first three days of December and get your Christmas shopping done and dusted well ahead of the big day! With 230 stallholders there is something to interest everyone, along with designer showbags, creative workshops and food and drinks for sale.

Sydney to Hobart, 26-31 December

The Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race will start off as usual in Sydney on Boxing Day, and if you're in the area finding a way to watch the yachts head off is great fun. Over the period of 27-31 December, Hobart Race Village will be built up on Constitution Dock with plenty of entertainment as you wait for the yachts to sail in.

Manjimup Cherry Harmony Festival, 9 December

In the south-west of WA, the Manjimup Cherry Harmony Festival is celebrating its 16th year in 2017 and looks like it will be better than ever. Of course, there are plenty of chances to enjoy the local cherries, but more broadly it celebrates the diversity of fresh produce from the whole region, along with a range of entertainment and a 200-person long table lunch right in the cherry orchard.

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra Christmas, 16 December

A great way to get into the Christmas spirit is to head along to the MSO's Christmas concert. Joined by the MSO Chorus, they'll perform traditional Christmas music like Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker and there'll be a few rounds of the Hallelujah Chorus too.

Carols in the Domain, 17 December

It wouldn't be Christmas without Carols in the Domain! This year's feature artists include Justice Crew, Big T, Samantha Jade, Jersey Boys and Dami Im, among many more. Bring your own picnic rugs or ground seating to enjoy the event, and your own picnic too - or choose from a big range of food trucks including Thai, yum cha and Turkish cuisine.

Elizabeth I, 1-3 December

As part of the Wonderland Festival, "Elizabeth I" will be performed at the Visy Theatre. It's an interesting new take on history - Set in modern times, it's the story of a royal fan and it turns into a performance which is part history, part comedy and part slow dance - a bit of everything, and a must see for any history fans of the powerfully fascinating Elizabeth I.

Wine Machine, 9 December

Take the remarkable setting of the Serafino Winery, a bunch of great musicians and bands and plenty of access to excellent South Australian wine and you have the "Best Chardy Ever" festival. With an emphasis on electronic music it's a special day out and a great place to spend some time hitting the dance floor too.

Brewers Feast, 1-3 December

In the gardens of the Abbotsford Convent near Melbourne, the Brewers Feast Festival concentrates on Victoria's finest craft beer combined with excellent street food, along with great bands and singers to entertain you. For the beer lovers, there are at least a dozen beers that have been brewed exclusively for the Brewers Feast so you obviously need to try a few of them!