There’s nothing like Australia and there’s nothing like taking advantage of the knowledge of those who know the country like no one else!
Australia is mainly known around the world for its natural beauty. With an extensive variety of exotic plants and animals (it is estimated that the country has around 27.700 species of plants and almost 6.000 species of animals - 378 mammal species, 828 bird species, 4000 fish species, 300 species of lizards, 140 snake species, two crocodile species and around 50 types of marine mammal. More than 80 per cent of its plants, mammals, reptiles and frogs are unique to Australia and are found no-where else! This fact itself represents an impressive tourist attraction, that added to 50.000 kilometres of golden beaches, more than 2.000 kilometres of fabulous reefs, a millenary aboriginal culture, a wide and fascinating red centre and architectural icons recognized internationally like Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, brings us a unique country that attracts millions of visitors every year from all around the world.
Covering a total area of 7.69 million square kilometres, mainland Australia is the world’s largest island - but smallest continent.
In distance, the continent stretches about 3700 kilometres from north to south and 4000 kilometres from east to west, making it the sixth-largest nation after Russia, Canada, China, the United States and Brazil.
Australia currently has a population of almost 23 million people, with more than 80 per cent of residents living within 100 kilometres of the coastline. Its society is made up of people from a rich variety of cultural, ethnic, linguistic and religious backgrounds, and this is a defining feature of modern Australian society. Most Australians are immigrants or descendants of immigrants who arrived during the past two hundred years from more than 200 countries. The most commonly spoken language in Australia is English, although foreign languages are also common.
While creating and suggesting tourist itineraries in Australia it’s important to understand its geography and the particularities of each region. Basically, Australia is divided into six states and two territories, and on the next pages you will find further information about each of the states and its specific characteristics, along with informative videos that will help you increase your knowledge.
Weather in Australia
Australia experiences temperate weather for most of the year but the climate can vary due to the size of our continent. The northern states typically experience warm weather much of the time, with the southern states experiencing cooler winters. Like all countries in the southern hemisphere, Australia's seasons are opposite to those in the northern hemisphere. December to February is summer; March to May is autumn; June to August is winter; and September to November is spring.
Time zones in Australia
Australia is divided into three separate time zones:
Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) covers the eastern states of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory. AEST is equal to Coordinated Universal Time plus 10 hours (UTC +10).
Australian Central Standard Time (ACST) covers the state of South Australia, the town of Broken Hill in western New South Wales and the Northern Territory. ACST is equal to Coordinated Universal Time plus 9½ hours (UTC +9½).
Australian Western Standard Time (AWST) covers Western Australia. AWST is equal to Coordinated Universal Time plus 8 hours (UTC +8).
Australia’s national currency is the Australian dollar which comes in denominations of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 notes. Coins come in 5, 10, 20 and 50 cent and one and two dollar denominations.
Unless you are an Australian or New Zealand citizen, you will need a visa to enter Australia. You can apply for a range of visas, including tourist visas and working holiday visas, at your nearest Australian Consulate. You can also apply for certain types of visas online.