GeographyKnow Your Oz
Magnetic Island, Qld. Photo credit: Tourism and Events Queensland
Before you travel Australia
A few facts about where you’re going…
States and territories
Australia has six states:
- New South Wales (NSW)
- Queensland (QLD)
- South Australia (SA)
- Tasmania (TAS)
- Victoria (VIC)
- Western Australia (WA)
And two territories:
Canberra (in the ACT)
Largest city (by population)
Sydney, with over 4.5m residents. Melbourne is just behind and expected to overtake Sydney within the next few years. Amazingly, Canberra’s population is almost 90% less than Sydney’s.
Highest mountain (not including external territories)
Mount Kosciuszko in New South Wales (2,228m)
River Murray (2,508km)
The Great Northern Highway, running 3,204km from Perth to Wyndham. If you drive it, pray you’re in something with decent fuel economy.
Australia’s mainland coast is 35,000km long, with some 10,685 beaches. Its many islands add thousands more.
Australia is the lowest, flattest and driest regularly inhabited landmass on earth. 20% of Australia is classified as desert with the Great Victoria Desert at number eight in the world’s ten largest deserts.
Officially, there isn’t one. Five candidates for geographic centre have been proposed using various calculations, but only the Lambert Gravitational Centre Monument makes a decent photo opportunity. Find it in Erldunda in the Northern Territory.
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