Australia - Introduction

Learn all about Australia! Get interesting information about Australia and read up on our history, culture, movies, books and music.
Learn about Australian history, from the Aboriginal Dreamtime to British settlement, our convict history and the birth of a modern, multicultural nation. 
Gain an insight into Australian culture, which is founded on notions of a ‘fair go’, love of the great outdoors and a dry sense of humour.  Learn more about Australians - our Aboriginal culture, our legendary folk heroes, modern day heroes and the diverse nationalities that make up modern Australian society.
Check out our quirky and interesting information about Australia, with facts across a range of areas, from our record-breakers to Australian flora and fauna. 
Want to know more about Kylie Minogue or Nicole Kidman or find out which Australian authors have won the Man Booker Prize? Get an overview of our film credits, award-winning authors and talented musicians.

Australia's History

Aboriginal people dream on a timeless continent
Australia’s Aboriginal people were thought to have arrived here by boat from South East Asia during the last Ice Age, at least 50,000 years ago. At the time of European  discovery and settlement, up to one million Aboriginal people lived across the continent as hunters and gatherers. They were scattered in 300 clans and spoke 250 languages and 700 dialects. Each clan had a spiritual connection with a specific piece of land. However, they also travelled widely to trade, find water and seasonal produce and for ritual and totemic gatherings.

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Australia's Culture

 Australian culture is founded on stories of battlers, bushrangers and brave soldiers. Of sporting heroes, working heroes and plucky migrants. It’s all about a fair go, the great outdoors and a healthy helping of irony. Today Australia also defines itself by its Aboriginal heritage, vibrant mix of cultures, innovative ideas and a thriving arts scene.

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Australia's facts

A wide, brown land
Australia is the sixth largest country in the world. It's about the same size as the 48 mainland states of the USA and 50 per cent larger than Europe, but has the lowest population density in the world - only two people per square kilometre.
Australia is the only nation to govern an entire continent and its outlying islands. The mainland is the largest island and the world’s smallest, flattest continent.

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Films, books and music


Australia’s extensive film credits include a comic pig called Babe, the post-apocalyptic Mad Max movies, and the gender-bending road movie, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Our movies have pushed actors like Nicole Kidman, Judy Davis, Heath Ledger, Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe and the swashbuckling Errol Flynn onto the world stage. Australia the country also often gets a starring role, with landscapes that range from foreboding to romantic and sublime.
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