Interesting Facts about Australia

Ask the question of what Australia is known for to Aussies and foreigners and you'll get answers like Hugh Jackman, Nicole Kidman, Kylie Minogue, kangaroos, koalas, cricket, swimming, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House, Bondi Beach, Aborigines, Minerals, wine and vegemite. Australia is much more than these. Here are some interesting facts to share with family, friends and visitors about Australia.

1) It is the 6th largest country in the world, occupying an entire continent of some 7.6 million square kilometres.

2) It has the world's 3rd largest ocean territory, spanning three oceans and covering around 12 million square kilometres. 3) Vegetation covers nearly 7 million square kilometres or 91 percent of Australia. 4) The largest Greek population in the world beside Athens in Greece can be found in Melbourne Victoria.

5) Most of Australia's exotic flora and fauna cannot be found anywhere else in the world. 6) The Indigenous 'Dream Time' is the foundation for tens of thousands of years of spiritual aboriginal art, traditions, legends, myths, folklore and culture.

7) The first Australian Friendly Society with the motto of 'Advance Australia' was the Australian Natives' Association (ANA) formed in Victoria in 1871. 8) More than 80 percent of Australians live within 100 kilometres of the coast making Australia one of the world's most urbanised coastal dwelling populations.

9) The world's highest proportion of migrant settlers in a developed nation with over 25% of Australians born in another country.

10) The first Australian of the Year award was awarded to Professor Macfarlane Burnet who had won the Nobel Prize in the same year of 1960 for his groundbreaking physiology research.

11) It has 16 world heritage listed sites including historic townships, cities and landscapes.

12) Australia used to be a beer-drinking nation but its quaffing plunged to a 65-year low in 2010-2011 with only 4.23 litres consumed per person.

13) It is believe that the Aboriginal game of Mangrook inspired the rules for Australian Football, while invented in Sydney became popular in Victoria.

14) Australia was the second country in the world to give women the right to vote in 1902. 15) The largest cattle station in the world is Anna Creek Station in South Australia at over 34,000 square kilometres is the world's largest cattle station. It is even larger than Belgium.

16) It has the highest rate of gambling in the world with over 80 percent of Australian adults engaging in gambling of some kind and 20 percent of the pokie machines in the world are found in Australia.

17) Canberra was selected as the capital because Sydney and Melbourne could not stop arguing which city should be the capital of Australia.

18) The sports capital of the world has 70 percent of its total population participating at least once a week in a particular recreational activity or sport.

19) Approximately 1.35 trillion bottles of wine are produced by Australia.

20) Australia is as wide as the distance between London to Moscow.

21) Australia has the highest electricity prices in the world.

22) Melbourne is considered the sporting capital of the world, as it has more top level sport available for its citizens than anywhere else.

23) If you visited one new beach in Australia every day, it would take over 27 years to see them all.

24) The Great Barrier Reef is the planet’s largest living structure.

25) Australia has 3.3x more sheep than people.

26) The Australian Alps receive more snowfall than Switzerland.

27) A kangaroo is only one centimetre long when it is born.

28) Australia is the only continent in the world without an active volcano.

29) Australia is ranked second on the Human Development Index (based on life expectancy, income and education).

30) Tasmania has the cleanest air in the world.

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