Officially known as the
Commonwealth of Australia, this amazing country half a world away,
is the largest land mass in the South Pacific, the sixth largest
country by total area, the largest island in the
world and the smallest, flattest continent in the
world. It sits between the Indian Ocean to the West, the
Southern Antartic Ocean to the South and the South Pacific to the
North and East. It comprises of the main island of Australia,
Tasmania, Melville Island, Kangaroo Island plus a large number
of smaller islands - 8,222 in total within its maritime
borders! Australia's coastline stretches for 50,000 km and
has over 10,000 beaches.
European settlement started in the
late 18th century, but before they arrived, the islands were
inhabited by indigenous Australians, known as Aboriginals, who
spoke 250 different languages, with 600 different dialects!
Only a handfull remain in regular use and most Aborigines speak
English with Aboriginal words or phrases added.
In the present day,
Australia is amongst the lowest inhabited nation, with
only 2.8 inhabitants per sqkm and most of the population is
centered along the temperate south-eastern coast line, between the
cities of Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.
There are more sheep and cattle than humans, with mainly Merino
sheep, producing most of the worlds' Merino wool, and the 24.4
million cattle helping to make Australia the worlds' biggest
exporter of beef. Australia also export a huge amount of
opals and gold, from mines in Western and
Most of Australia is barren,
baking desert, known as the Outback, surrounded by large areas
of dry grassland. There are sub-tropical
areas on the central east coast and the south-west coast,
a tropical climate on most of the north coast and pleasant
temperate climate on the south-eastern coastal area.
Australia is divided into 6
distinct territories; Western Australia in the west, Northern
Territories in the central north, South Australia in the central
south, and Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales on the eastern
coast. The capital city is Canberra, in New South Wales, but
Sydney is usually the main city that most people know of and are
85% of Australians live within 50km
of the coast, and the beach and water activities feature highly in
most Australian lives, and usually, most tourists, too. From
surfing, swimming, beach barbecues to snorkelling, scuba
diving, sailing, parasailing, fishing, celebrations, fireworks and
parties - life beside the sea is an integral part of daily
life and their social calendar.
Sports are also widely enjoyed,
almost fanatically, and tourists are always welcome to join in or
spectate with the locals. The nation can't get enough
football, cricket, rugby, tennis, rowing, cycling and horse racing.
There are festivals in every city that peak the interests of the
locals, as well as tourists, and Australia is famous for its wine
production, with winery tours being a popular way to
spend a day.
The majority of visitors to
Australia will need a Visitors Visa for tourist travel. For
more information, give us a call or contact a dedicated visa