Christmas Uncovered: How North Shore Mums celebrate Christmas


Our recent Christmas Survey has unveiled some fascinating facts about Christmas – including favourite traditions, movies, types of Christmas trees and how Christmas Day is spent. So… just how ‘North Shore’ is your Christmas? Find out whether your Christmas is in keeping with traditions or if you’re bucking the trends and doing your own thing this year!

Favourite Traditions

Christmas is all about traditions, and we wanted to find out what your favourite traditions are. NSMs were allowed to choose just three of their favourite traditions from a list… and putting up the Christmas tree is by far the most exciting tradition for local families!

  1. Putting up the Christmas tree
  2. Listening to Christmas music
  3. Visiting a neighbourhood with spectacular Christmas lights
  4. Getting a photo with Santa
  5. Watching a Christmas movie
  6. Going to a carol concert (20%)
  7. Baking Christmas cookies or other goodies
  8. Advent Calendar (26%)
  9. Putting up Christmas lights
  10. Building a Gingerbread House (13%)

Other traditions (that didn’t quite make the Top 10) include going to church, neighhourhood street party, making a Christmas pudding, going to a pantomime and Elf on the Shelf.

Christmas Tree

Most families (74%) have a plastic fantastic tree, 21% choose a real tree and 6% don’t bother with a tree at all.

Elf on the Shelf

Whilst your Facebook feed might have you feeling like every other family has an Elf on the Shelf, it’s not the reality. In fact, only 24% of local families have welcomed an Elf into their home for the festive season.

Santa Photo

Will YOU take your children to have a photo with Santa? It’s the 4th most popular tradition, with 77% of families doing the Santa photo thing.

If you haven’t yet taken your kids for a photo, click here to find out where to go!

Santa photo at QVB

Christmas Movies

Curling up on the couch to watch a Christmas Movie is one of the favourite traditions for families… and Love Actually came out overwhelmingly in the Number 1 position!

  1. Love Actually
  2. Home Alone
  3. Elf
  4. Bridget Jones
  5. The Polar Express
  6. The Holiday
  7. Miracle On 34th Street
  8. The Grinch
  9. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
  10. Die Hard

Click here to view the full Top 21 favourite Christmas movies, complete with movie trailers too. 

Home or Away?

84% of North Shore families will be spending Christmas at home in Sydney this year… with 16% heading out of town for a holiday.

Christmas Day

Who hosts?

31% of North Shore families will be going to their own parents for lunch (e.g the grandparents home), 28% of North Shore Mums will be hosting a big feast for family or friends on Christmas Day, whilst 17% will be staying home for an intimate day with the immediate family.

5% will be going to a siblings (e.g the aunt & uncles), 3% with friends, 3% dining in a restaurant and 2% going to a park or beach.

What will you be eating?

There’ll be a mix of traditional Christmas dishes and more summer-inspired seafood dishes on tables this year. Glazed ham, turkey and prawns are the most popular choices… and the novelty Turducken (which is basically a chicken stuffed in a deboned duck which is further stuffed in a turkey) will only be served on 2% of tables.

Try this maple glazed ham from

The most popular meat choices:

  1. Glazed ham 68%
  2. Turkey 54%
  3. Prawns 53%
  4. Seafood Platter 31%
  5. Chicken 27%
  6. Pork 25%
  7. Smoked salmon
  8. Lamb 10%
  9. Fish 12%
  10. Vegetarian Roast & Beef (equal)

The most popular side choices:

  • Salads 72%
  • Roast vegetables 58%
  • Roast potatoes 52%

The sweet stuff! What’s for dessert?


The traditional Christmas pudding is no longer the #1 dessert of choice for Sydney families… with a healthy fruit salad or platter topping the list, followed by a pavlova!

  1. Fruit salad or platter
  2. Pavlova
  3. Traditional Christmas pudding (60% home made, 40% store bought)
  4. Chocolates
  5. Trifle
  6. Traditional Christmas cake
  7. Cheesecake
  8. Apple pie
  9. Mousse
  10. Pannatone

Other desserts include Biscotti, Lamingtons & Croquembouche.

Favourite sides are

  1. Ice cream
  2. Custard
  3. Brandied custard
  4. Cream
  5. Gelati

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