Australians are among the most stereotyped people on the planet. We’ve all seen the image of the blonde and tanned Aussie surfer who walks around barefoot, has no worries and rides a kangaroo to his job while eating a Vegemite sandwich.

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When you travel to Australia for the first time, you’ll realize that for the most part, that’s not exactly accurate. It’s time to separate fact from fiction and find out what Australian stereotypes are completely false, and which ones are actually true. Keep reading to find out.

10 Completely False: They Ride Kangaroos

One of the biggest (and most comical) stereotypes about Australians is that they ride kangaroos to work or at least use kangaroos as a regular mode of transport. This is wrong on so many levels.

Not only would it be unethical to ride kangaroos like this but many of them aren’t big enough for this to be physically possible. The big male red kangaroos who are large enough to carry a small human definitely aren’t the kind that would allow someone to get on their back.

In general, you won’t see kangaroos throughout the cities of Australia, anyway. They live in the bush, sometimes appearing on country roads.

9 Kind Of True: They’re Very Easygoing

Australians have a reputation for being easy-going, and for the most part, this is true. Sure, you’ll find Australians that are highly strung or neurotic just like you would find people like that no matter where you go. But culturally speaking, Australians generally tend to enjoy a relaxed attitude towards life.

Many foreigners who travel to Australia for the first time are often amazed by how relaxed everything seems. In general, people are in less of a rush and happy to go with the flow than fret about things.

8 Completely False: They Eat Vegemite On Everything

Vegemite is an Aussie favorite and definitely features in the average Australian diet. But it’s a huge embellishment to say that Australians eat Vegemite on absolutely everything. The majority of people would have it on toast for breakfast or in a sandwich for lunch. It definitely isn’t slathered on everything as if it were seasoning.

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There are some foods you can get in Australia that are flavored with Vegemite. There was once a limited edition of Cadbury chocolate infused with Vegemite available, but it didn’t really take off. Most Aussies eat their Vegemite in moderation, and only where appropriate.

7 Kind Of True: They Are Passionate About Sports

Australia is a country that prides itself on its strong sporting culture. While Down Under, you’ll find that most Aussies really are passionate about their sports, even if you come across the odd few who aren’t. The sport that captivates most of the country is AFL or Australian Rules Football.

Unlike American football, Aussie football is generally played without any protective gear. While NFL is played on a rectangular field, AFL is played on an oval field. The tradition for the last game of the season, the Grand Final, is to have a barbecue with family and friends while watching the game.

6 Completely False: Everybody Surfs And Wears No Shoes

When most foreigners think of Australia, they imagine a place where the entire population surfs and are surfies. In other words, they picture Australians walking around in sandy wet suits with no shoes as they carry their surfboards over their shoulders.

Sure, there are Australians like this, but it definitely doesn’t reflect everybody. There are certain beaches in Australia where surfing is popular, but there are also many places that don’t have that surfing culture at all.

You might also see some Australians walking around without shoes, but away from the beach areas of coastal towns and cities, this is very much the minority.

5 Kind Of True: They Do Love Their Beach Culture

Although not all Australians are into surfing, it is a national pastime to enjoy a day at the beach. Because holidays like Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and Australia Day tend to fall in summer in Australia, these occasions are often spent by the ocean.

When you see how beautiful the beaches of Australia are, you’ll understand why there is such a strong beach culture. A typical day at an Aussie beach involves a bit of swimming, a bit of beach cricket, a barbecue lunch, and a few beers.

4 Completely False: All Australians Are Blonde And Tanned

The stereotypical Australian has blonde hair and tanned skin. You’ll definitely find Aussies who fit this description, but it doesn’t apply to everyone. The thing to remember about Australia is that it’s a very multicultural country. Since the first European settlers arrived, migrants from all over the world have arrived on Australian shores to start a new life.

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In Australia, you’ll find large communities of people who are the descendants of Italians, Greeks, Lebanese, Irish, Croatian, Chinese, and Vietnamese, many of whom consider themselves Australian. Of course, Australia is also home to the first owners of the land, the Indigenous Australians, and more recently has received migrants from countries such as India and Sudan.

3 Kind Of True: Australians Like To Drink

There are a few countries around the world that have a reputation of loving to drink. Ireland is one of them. Russia is another. And with their Foster’s beer, Australia is another. Not all Australians like to drink. In fact, not all Australians even like beer. But overall, the drinking culture in Australia does tend to be stronger than it is in other countries.

Having a beer on a lazy afternoon in summer is another national pastime. Again, not everyone in the country enjoys it. But that culture is certainly there.

2 Completely False: They All Know Each Other

When Australians travel overseas, they are often bombarded with the same questions from the people they meet. Do you ride kangaroos? Do you know how to surf? And funnily enough, My friend is from Australia; do you know them?

A lot of foreigners don’t realize that Australia is nearly the size of the United States. Yes, it does have a significantly smaller population at around 24 million, while the U.S. has around 327 million. But still, they don’t all know each other. There’s a very minute chance that the Aussie traveler you’re meeting knows your Aussie friend.

1 Kind Of True: Aussies Have Their Own Language

Australian slang is often said to be very difficult to understand and in our experience, this is totally true, even if you’re a native English-speaker. While virtually all Australians speak English, the Aussie dialect is packed with words that you have probably never heard before.

Our advice would be to brush up on a little Aussie slang if you plan on traveling to Australia. Once you become familiar with it, is much easier to understand what words like avo (avocado) and brekkie (breakfast) mean. Pretty soon, you’ll be confident enough to dine in Aussie cafes and ask for a bikkie (cookie) with your hot choccie (hot cocoa).

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