Australia and New Zealand

Intro

  • Officially called – Commonwealth of Australia
  • Made up of 6 states and the island Tasmania
  • Australia is the youngest and also the smallest continent in the world
  • Very far from the other continents
  • That it is the reason it was discovered as late as in 1770

 

Location

  • Island continent
  • Situated in the southern hemisphere (summer x winter)
  • Is located to the southeast of the mainland Asian continent and to the southwest of North America
  • Neighbor of other several nations in Pacific – Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and the Philippines to the north; New Zealand to the southeast; Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, Tahiti to the south
  • Washed by the Indian Ocean in west and the south Pacific in east
  • Has no land borders

Surface

  • Eastern Australia is marked by the Great Dividing Range, Mount Kosciuszko-highest mountain of the Australian inland, runs parallel to the coast
  • The northernmost point of the east coast is the tropical-rainforested Cape York Peninsula
  • Landscape of the northern part of the country consists mostly of grassland and deserts
  • At the heart of the country are the uplands of central Australia, Uluru-famous sandstone monolith
  • At the north-west corner of the continent are the sandstone cliffs and gorges of The Kimberley

 

 

 

Climate

  • Varies from equatorial to temperate
  • Significantly influenced by ocean currents
  • Period drought is typical for some parts of Australia, driest inhabited continent in the world
  • Very low rainfall rates
  • In the southern hemisphere – they have summer when we have winter
  • Hurricanes often appear here

Water bodies

  • Not many of them
  • The largest river is called Murray (1600km long), with tributaries Darling and Lachlan
  • Most Australian rivers are only small creeks
  • About 760 lakes, Lake Eyre is the biggest on

Natural resources

  • Minerals in Australia had a tremendous impact on its history
  • Gold – one of the biggest producers in the world, caused few gold fevers, set the Australian demographic pattern, been declining lately
  • Has big black coal reserves – they do not need to import
  • Rich deposits of uranium ore – used for power plants

Economy

  • One of the largest economies in the world
  • 17th largest by GDP per person
  • Currency – Australian dollar
  • Connected with the economy of New Zealand

 

Agriculture

  • Contributes 3% of the Australian GDP, do not have good conditions
  • 60% of farm products are exported
  • Sheep raising – largest wool producer in the world
  • Other products – wheat, barley
  • Australian wine is also very popular

Industry

  • Mining is most prominent, mostly coal, mostly in Queensland
  • Food manufacturing is also one of the biggest ones
  • Textile industry has been declining recently
  • 4 companies manufacture cars in Australia

Services

  • Makes up to 68% of GDP
  • Visited by a lot of tourists

Population, languages

  • Population of 23 million, most of the people live in the cities
  • One of the lowest population density in the world
  • Mostly British and Irish origin
  • Big migration (working opportunities)– 25% of citizens were born elsewhere; mostly UK, China, India, Italy
  • Asian Australians make up to 12%
  • Original citizens are called Aborigines, lived in Australia before the arrival of Europeans
  • Has no official language – English is mostly spoken
  • Very religious – 61% counted as Christian
  • One of the most expensive countries to attend universities

Cities

Canberra

  • The capitol
  • Largest inland city, 8th largest overall
  • Capital since 1908, compromise between Sydney and Melbourne
  • Modern architecture

Sydney

  • Most populous
  • Located on the south-east coast
  • Lots of immigrants
  • Sydney Opera House – UNESCO landmark
  • Big harbor

Melbourne

  • North-east Australia
  • Second biggest
  • Leading financial center in Australia
  • Often marked as one of the world´s most “livable” cities

Brisbane

  • On the coast, east Australia
  • Most populous in the state Queensland
  • Stands on the original European settlement
  • Named after Brisbane river

Points of interest

  • Great Barrier Reef –located in the Coral Sea, east of Australia, world´s largest barrier system, formed by millions of living organisms
  • Uluru – also called Ayers Rock, large sandstone formation, UNESCO heritage
  • The Twelve Apostles – limestone formation, in state Victoria
  • Australian Open – every January in Melbourne
  • Big amount of endemic species – koalas, kangaroos, emu (non-flying bird related to ostrich), wombat MARSUPIALS

 

 

 

 

New Zealand

 

Introduction

  • Island country made up of two islands – South and North
  • Known for its biodiversity

Location

  • Situated 1500km east of Australia, across the Tasman Sea
  • Island separated by Cooks Strait
  • That is one of the last island to be settled by humans

Surface

  • South Island – very mountainous, Southern Alps, highest peak – Mt. Cook
  • North Island – less mountainous, marked by volcanism

Climate

  • Mild and temperate climate

Water bodies

  • Longest river – Wakaito River
  • Many notable waterfalls – Huka Falls

Natural resources

  • Natural gas, iron ore, coal

Economy

  • Currency – New Zealand Dollar (Kiwi dollar)
  • Heavily dependent on international trade
  • Service sector – the largest
  • Tourism is also important – supports 10% of workforce
  • Small high tech sectors, mostly tourism and prime sector
  • Wool – major agriculture export

People, languages

  • Population about 4,5 million
  • Has relatively young population
  • Maori – original citizens
  • Asia – largest source of overseas immigrants
  • Predominant language – English

Cities

  • Wellington – capitol, second biggest, located on the North Island, sometimes also called “The windy city”
  • Auckland – in the North Island, the biggest city, 1,5 million, 32% of the NZ population, Sky Tower – most significant landmark

Places of interest

National parks – from the ones which lie on the beach, to the ones which are high in mountains