50 Fascinating Facts about Australia

Australia is the sixth largest country in the world in terms of land mass. The entire country of Australia includes the Australian continent and numerous islands off the coast of the continent including Tasmania. Countries that surround Australia include Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and East Timor to the north and New Zealand to the south. The country is home to approximately 23 million people with 4.6 million of them living in the largest city of Sydney. The country uses the Australian dollar as their currency, and has a very flourishing economy. Australia doesn’t have an official language; however English is primarily spoke throughout most of the country. The country also does not have an official religion, but the majority of Australians identify themselves as Christians. The Australian flag is comprised of three main colors. Its background is dark blue, and it contains five stars from the Southern Cross and a Commonwealth Star.

Australia Facts

1
Living on the beach is what most Australians desire. Approximately 75% of Australians live near or on the beach.
2
Australia’s total nominal GDP is 1.542 trillion dollars, making it the 12th largest in the world. Its nominal per capita GDP is $65,642 which is the fifth largest in the world.
3
Australia has a very low poverty rate, and a high standard of living.
4
Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and Adelaide have all appeared on The Economist’s world most livable cities lists in various years.
5
The real estate market in Australia is booming; however they have some of the highest house prices in the world, and Australians have very high household debt levels.
6
The country’s government is a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy.
7
The main exports of Australia include iron-ore, gold, natural gas and coal. They export most of their products to Japan, China, South Korea, New Zealand and the United States.
8
Australia is also a large exporter of wine. Wine exports contribute over $5.5 billion per year to Australia’s total economy.
9
Most people who live in Australia descend from the British or the Irish because for over 200 years the majority of Australia’s immigrants came from the British Isles.
10
Since WWI, Australia’s population has quadrupled.
11
Australia’s nickname is the island continent.
12
The Great Barrier Reef is found off of the coast of Australia and is the largest reef system in the world.
13
The Summer Olympics has been located in Australia twice, once in 1956 and once in 2000.
14
Over 750 reptile species live in Australia.
15
Australia Day is celebrated each year on January 26th. It is a controversial holiday in Australia due to its origins. The first Australia Day was celebrated to commemorate the opening of a prison in Sydney, and many Australians don’t wish to celebrate the day for that reason.
16
Christmas is celebrated in Australia; however they don’t often have Christmas trees. Since the country has a hot climate, the country instead celebrates by hanging lights, doing charity work and singing carols.
17
The Melbourne Cup is a horse race that occurs each year. It is similar to the Kentucky Derby, in that women and men dress in their best clothes and bet on the horses that they hope to win.
18
During the 2001 Australian census 0.37% of Australians identified themselves as following the Jedi knight religion, as in the Star Wars Jedi Knights.
19
English is the official language; however around 15% of citizens speak a language other than English at home. Other common languages found in Australia include Italian, Greek, Vietnamese and Arabic.
20
Australian citizens are very unified and have a sense of community. Even though the country is diverse, its people are connected through their love for their homeland.
21
Australia is known for its vibrant and thriving art scene. Most of the colorful art originates from Australia’s indigenous people.
22
Storytelling is an important part of Australia’s culture. This also stems from Australia’s indigenous people. They often told their history through stories that were passed down through their family, and the tradition has continued in today’s society.
23
Australia is made up of six states and two territories. It is classified as both the world's smallest continent and the world's largest island.
24
Australia has three different time zones: Australian Eastern Standard, Australian Central Standard, and Australian Western Standard.
25
Over 80% of the plants, mammals, frogs, and reptiles are unique to Australia and cannot be found anywhere else in the world.
26
The largest carnivorous mammal in Australia is the dingo. This animal is only about the size of a house cat. There are no large carnivorous mammals in Australia.
27
Australia is home to 21 of the 25 most venomous snakes in the world. It has more venomous snake species than any other continent.
28
The world's longest golf course is located in Australia. Nullarbor Links measures in at over 850 miles long.
29
Australia has one of the oldest histories in the world. Aborigines from Australia date back between 40,000 and 60,000 years.
30
Australia was the second country in the world to give women the right to vote. This occurred in 1902.
31
There are over 200 languages spoken in Australia. This includes many indigenous languages. Though English is the most commonly spoken, other languages spoken throughout the area include Greek, Italian, Arabic, and Mandarin.
32
The lung fish lived during the Triassic period approximately 350 million years ago. Australia is the only place in the world where this creature can still be found.
33
Anna Creek Station is the largest cattle farm in Australia. It is located in South Australia and is larger than Belgium and Israel.
34
Melbourne, Victoria has the second-highest population of Greeks in the world, trailing only behind Athens, Greece.
35
Australia has one of the highest gambling populations in the world. In 2015, Australians lost $17.5 billion to gambling, with a per capita average that is also one of the highest worldwide.
36
Kangaroos can't just be found in the wild and it the zoos in Australia -- they're also found in the local butcher shops. Kangaroo meat is commonly consumed in Australia and is considered a leaner alternative to beef.
37
An Australian living in California began peddling his sheepskin boots to surfers and other locals. These boots were based on warm footwear called ugg boots that were constructed of sheepskin and worn by Australian surfers in the 1960s. Today, these boots are now sold worldwide, and in the US, the UGG brand has become popular with many people, including celebrities.
38
While many people tend to think of sunny beaches and beautiful weather when talking about Australia, there are also parts that are covered in snow. In fact, the snow-covered areas of Australia are larger than Switzerland.
39
Australia has its desert area, known as the Outback. In this area, there were approximately one million camels that roam in the wild. These feral camels are now being controlled by the government's Feral Camel Management Program.
40
The Great Victoria Desert is a barren area in Australia that is larger in area than the United Kingdom.
41
During the 19th Century, a group of colonists sailed to Paraguay to begin what would be called "New Australia." The venture was not sucessful.
42
The Night Watch was the first police force in Australia, established in 1789. Oddly enough, this force was created using the "best behaved" convicts.
43
Prior to 1902, it was illegal to swim on the beaches of Australia during the day.
44
The island state of Tasmania has the cleanest air in the world, with experts stating that the air is as clean as that found in Antarctica.
45
In addition to having one of the highest gambling populations in the world, Australia also has about 20% of the world's slot machines, with a total of approximately 200,000.
46
Almost everyone in modern times has heard of the selfie, but did you know that this term was first said by an Australian? In 2002, an Australian man coined the term as a slang term for self-portrait.
47
Brisbane, Australia is the home for host of the world cockroach racing championship, which is exactly what it sounds like.
48
A government shutdown occurred in Australia in 1975. The Queen filed all of Parliament and, essentially, the government started over.
49
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, 63% of Aussies were classified as overweight or obese in 2012.
50
Australia's national anthem was "God Save the Queen" until 1984. Now, the national anthem is "Advance Australia Fare."

Australia is a very relaxed and easy going country. Its people are connected to the country, and have a lot of love and pride for Australia. The country has thrived since it received its independence from the United Kingdom in 1901 it has built a flourishing economy and a high quality of life for its citizens. Australia’s citizens have one of the highest life expectancies in the world, and live a very relaxed and fun filled life. Most Australians live near the beach and can often be found outdoors enjoying the sun. Due to their high quality of life and beautiful climate and lands many people immigrate to the country each year, hoping to leave behind their busy lives and find happiness under the sun.

Sources