Australia Continent, Australia Facts
Australia is a lonely continent on the surface of the earth. It is the world's smallest continent whose total area is 7,682,300 square kilometers. Australia is a highly diverse continent. It has extremes of weather, a stunning variety of flora and fauna, snow-capped mountains, vast stretches of deserts, frightening marshes and fertile flatland. It has been home to races and people creating socio-culture diversity matching its bio-diversity. It has had as many languages as the communities inhabiting here but English is the official language of Australia. The Common Wealth of Australia is comprises of six states, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Vitoria and Western Australia and two territories_ the Australian capital territory and the Northern territory. Its more than ideal geographic location which exercises a profound influence on its economy. Tasmania, one of the finest lakes in the world, contributes significantly to its economy by attracting a lot of tourists. Its distinct position on the earth determines its climate and topography. Australia occupies four different climate zones, Sub equatorial, Tropical, Subtropical and Temperate. Two-thirds of the Australia is arid and doesn't support vegetation. Its climatic diversity gives rise to natural hazards in the form of thunderstorm, droughts, occasional floods and frequent bushfires.
The predominant country on this continent is Australia which is a high metropolitan country with has multi-diverse cultures and languages, rich in valuable treasure of wildlife and exotic beaches. It is the world 18th most urbanized country of the earth. Being the most developed countries of the world, Australia is also the most popular country on this continent .It is the world's 12th largest economy and has the world's 5th highest per capita income. Australia is emerging as a nation due to its moderate polices such as quality education, health facilities, civic liberties, economic freedom and political rights. Canberra is the capital of Australia.
Australia is a paradox of isolation and connectivity but the globalization has paved a path for its connection with the entire world. The economy of the continent is one of the fastest developed and the most advanced economies of the world because of the development of Australia (country) and New Zealand. With the advent of new global order, Australia (country) has gained significant importance in the global world. Its economy is dominated y its service sector including tourism, education and mining. According to the report of international Monetary Fund (2011) Australia is ranked 5th in the world in terms of GDP.
Australia is a place where adventure and exploration never ends. With its jagged mountains, breathtaking seascapes, delicate and exotic wildlife and world class shopping centers; Australia is one of the top destinations in the world. Its natural wonders and man-made fascinations invite the tourists from all over the world. Australia indisputably posses some of the most beautiful beaches in the world with crystals of sand and clean limpid ocean water. The small and calms bays are perfect for swimming and surfing. Another breathtaking feature of this green continent is Great Barrier Reef known as the "Pearl of the Crown". It is the sanctuary of aquatic life which is the masterpiece of the nature on the earth. Ayres rock is famous for its unique feature. It changes its color from light orange to scarlet and purple in different parts of the day. Next is Fraser Island, a big island that is created only of sand and it is a hot spot of Australia. Besides these ravishing beauties of nature, the most significant cities of Australia for the tourists are Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Perth and Adelaide.
Isolation can be termed as a significant feature of Australia's wild life. Australia's wildlife is unique in appearance and has attracted world attention. The Fauna of Australia consists of a huge variety of animals; 83% mammals, 89%reptiles, 90% fish and insects and 93% amphibian. It is the home of Kangaroos, Kuala Bears, Crocodiles, Wallaby, Wombat, Platypus, emu and kookaburra (a noisy bird of a jungle). Many deadly and poisonous snakes are also found in Australian deserts. Australia and its territories accommodate around 800 species of birds and are famous for its rare kinds of fishes that are found in the aquatic life of this continent. More than 4,400 species of fish inhabit in Australia's waterways. Its Great Barrier Reef supports a huge variety of small and medium sized reef fish which have no comparison in the world.
A large number of Australian colleges and universities have earned worldwide recognition. There are 21 world-wide famous and successful universities in Australia as mentioned in Higher Education World Universities Ranking 2011-2012. Most successful universities of Australia on this list are university of Melbourne, which is at the 37th rank of the most important universities of the world and top in Australia. This internationally recognized university is working in the field of education for more then 150 years. There are more than 270 graduate degrees in the field of humanities, social sciences, medicine and engineering. Australian National University of New South Wales is also famous and has gained equal importance like University of Melbourne in the world.
Rivers pattern in Australia is unique in form and nature. They flow seasonally in specific period of year except one Murray/Darling river. It is considered to be the most important river of Australia which flow throughout the year. Originating from Australian Alps, it runs through south and empties into ocean at Marlo in Eastern Victoria. Along the way it passes through the two main places of Australia, the Snowy River and National park. Another longest river of Australia is Darling River which is the part of Murray River. It also flows throughout the year. The other rivers are important because they are running through capital cities of Australian states. Sydney is on Hawkeybary and Parramatta River, Melbourne is on Yarra River, Adelaide is on Torrens, Perth is on Swan river, Hobart is on Derwant River and Australian's capital city Canberra is on the bank of Molonglo River.
Most of the lakes in Australia are sour in nature due the presence of high salt contents. These lakes are not useful for the usage of human beings. Australia's largest salt lake is Lake Eyre. It covers an area of 9,690 sq. km. However most of the time it remains dry. There are numerous other large salts lakes in Australia like Lake Torrens, Lake Frome and Lake Amadeus. There are few lakes which are fresh and natural. Its largest natural fresh water lake is Lake Mackay. Another important lake is lake entrance in south-eastern Victoria leads to the sea and is a major tourist area with interconnecting "lakes" of Lake Wellington, Lake Victoria, loch sports and others.
Australia is the continent of diversity so it cannot be exempted from sports. Sports are widely played in this continent since colonization. Wide range of sports variety is found in this continent. Australia has competed in many international events including Olympics, Para Olympics and the commonwealth games. The country has a large numbers of national teams in sports like cricket, hockey, rugby union, basketball, hockey, soccer and water polo which represent them on international platform. Importance of sports can be seen through government programs to popularize the sports on every level. The Australian sports commission has created a program called the Indigenous Sport Program to provide additional sporting opportunities to aboriginals in their local communities. This continent comprises of 12 independent states.