Do you know about Australia’s Cities, States and Territories?
Australia is often referred to as the land ‘Down Under‘ but what do you really know about Australia’s Cities, States and Territories?
We are a country, an island and a continent. Australia is the world’s smallest continent and the sixth-largest country and made up of 6 states, 2 territories and 9 external territories.
To put it in perspective
We are also the world’s largest island. Despite the size of our country, our population currently stands at just under 24 million.
With wide open spaces and a much envied lifestyle, we’re often referred to as ‘the lucky country’.
Most travellers are familiar with the cities of Sydney and Melbourne, but there is so much more to our world Down Under.
I’m sure you know about our beautiful white sandy beaches, the Great Barrier Reef, our Koalas and Kangaroos and other unique birds and creatures. We have the great Australian outback, the Daintree Rainforest, the Blue Mountains and many other natural wonders, but did you know that in Australia we have some of the best snowfields in the world?
There really is so much to see and do in Australia.
The real question is “what will you do first”?
The Cities, States and Territories of Australia
The ACT – the Nation’s Capital
Australia’s Capital Territory’s (ACT) capital is Canberra. Canberra is centre of our government.
Canberra is noted for a number of important national institutions including Parliament House, the Australian War Memorial and the National Gallery of Australia. In spring, Canberra hosts one of the most magnificent floral festivals in Australia – Floriade.
New South Wales – the Premier State
New South Wales (NSW) is Australia’s oldest and most populated state which was originally settled as a penal colony in 1788 by England.
Sydney is the largest city in New South Wales, renowned for its idyllic beaches, the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House. Visit other popular attractions in New South Wales including the Blue Mountains, the Hunter Valley wine region or Byron Bay.
Read Next: Guide to Sydney
Northern Territory – Outback Australia
Darwin is the Northern Territory’s (NT) capital city. Darwin, is located on the northern coast of Australia and the gateway to a number of Australian icons and National Parks. It’s here you will find Kakadu in Arnhem Land, Litchfield Park and Katherine Gorge.
Alice Springs is the physical heart of Australia, and is almost exactly at the nation’s geographical centre. Travel to Alice Springs to visit Uluru (Ayers Rock)and Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) showcasing Aboriginal heritage and culture.
Queensland – the Sunshine State
Queensland (QLD) has long been known as the Sunshine State as it enjoys more sunshine and warmth than any other capital cities in Australia. Brisbane is the state’s capital and enjoys more winter sunshine and warmth than most Australian cities. As the locals say – Beautiful one day, perfect the next!
Known for its pristine rainforest, the world famous Great Barrier Reef and over 900 beautiful tropical islands including World Heritage-listed Fraser Island, Queensland has become one of the most popular destinations for visitors. Queensland has it all!
South Australia – the Festival State
South Australia (SA) is centre of the southern part of Australia. Adelaide the capital of South Australia is noted for its Mediterranean style climate.
Adelaide is a great base for exploring the nearby Barossa, Clare Valley and McLaren Vale wineries, the Flinders Ranges and Kangaroo Island. South Australia has a thriving arts and cycling culture. Known as the ‘Festival State’ South Australia hosts over 500 events and festivals each year.
Read next: Guide to Cosmopolitan Adelaide
Tasmania – the Apple Isle
Tasmania (TAS) is the smallest state in Australia, an island separated from mainland Australia by the Bass Strait. The capital, Hobart, was founded in 1804 as a penal colony.
One-fifth of Tasmania is covered by national parks and wilderness. Visit Cradle Mountain and the Franklin River to find some of the best walking trails in Australia. Enjoy Tasmania’s spectacular scenery, fresh produce cheese & wines.
Read next: Showcasing Hobart’s Convict Heritage
Victoria – the Garden State
Victoria (VIC) is the smallest of the mainland states but is home to the country’s second most populated city, Melbourne.
Often referred to as the nation’s cultural capital, Melbourne is famed for its graffiti laneways, fashion houses and its popular coffee culture.
Victorians are sporting fanatics! Known as home to the Melbourne Cup, the horse race that stops the nation, the Melbourne Cricket Grounds and the place where Australian Rules Football began.
Read next: Multicultural Melbourne
Western Australia – the Wildflower State
Western Australia (WA) is Australia’s largest Australian state. The state’s capital is Perth and famed for its uncrowded beaches, beautiful parklands and fresh seafood.
With over 13,000 kilometres of pristine coastline, you must visit! Western Australia has some incredible sights including Lake Hillier, the Pinnacles and Wave Rock. Visit the Margaret River wine region, swim with the dolphins at Monkey Mia or take a camel ride on Cable Beach in Broome.
The external Territories
There are a number of external territories under the administration of Australia – some open to visitors with regular flights and accommodation available.
- Christmas Island
- Cocos Keeling Islands
- Heard and McDonald Islands
- Norfolk Island
- Australian Antarctic Territory
- Ashmore and Cartier Islands
- Coral Sea Islands
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