Australia is a developed country and one of the wealthiest in the world, with the world's 12th-largest economy. In 2012 Australia had the world's fifth-highest per capita income, Australia's military expenditure is the world's 13th-largest. With the second-highest human development index globally, Australia ranks highly in many international comparisons of national performance, such as quality of life, health, education, economic freedom, and the protection of civil liberties and political rights. Australia is a member of the United Nations, G20, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Trade Organization, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, and the Pacific Islands Forum. Australian 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. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have inhabited Australia for tens of thousands of years. Most Australians are immigrants or the 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, and the most commonly practiced religion is Christianity, although foreign languages and other religions are also common.
Sydney - set on the beautiful blue Sydney Harbour, this fast paced city of cosmopolitan character is one of the world's most beautiful places. Colonial history, stunning architecture, superb waterways and friendly people epitomize the vitality of this spectacular city.
Take in the crisp, clean mountaintop air with distant blue haze horizons that overlook awesome canyons and rainforest. Visit the waterfalls and sleepy hamlets and find out why this is a very special place for every visitor.
Build your surf knowledge and confidence with this beginner surfing lesson on Bondi Beach!
Nature's Treasure Island: Sea voyage the Backstairs Passage from spectacular Cape Jervis to this sailing shipwreck island, home to the wallaby, goanna, echidna, koala, kangaroo and a haven for marine wildlife and seabirds.
Dry riverbeds, vast craggy ochre, red sandstone, gaps and gorges, and tranquil waterholes - these make up the spectacular landforms of the West MacDonnell Ranges.