• Helen Avaient

My Australian Story

When traveling you want to learn and experience new culture, people and facts, and those people you meet often want to know about you and your country. They will ask you question about your homeland and if you don’t know much about where you come from, you will either look like a bit silly, or you will make stuff up. (Ask any Australian what a drop bear is?)


This is a wonderful opportunity to regale new friends with stories they haven’t heard from you before. People want to know about your country. It is VERY important that you know some information about your area and country.


I call this – My Australian Story. It is correct as at February 2020.

Please remember some of these, or create your own. You never know when you will be asked something like these facts:












Just Some Amazing Facts about Australia

· Australia was one of the founding countries of the United Nations

· 2nd country to give women the vote (New Zealand was first)

· Voting is compulsory and there are fines issued to those who are registered to vote, and don’t

· Cars drive on the left (and pedestrians walk on the left, as well as keeping left on escalators)

· Australians don’t usually tip, and it is not expected

· Australians pay rent in per week $, not per month $

· Tasmania has the cleanest air in the world

· Eucalyptus tree are highly flammable, in bushfires they can explode

· Australia has one of the slowest internet speeds in the world

· The largest structure in the world – The Great Barrier Reef

· Highest minimum wage in the world, from 1 July 2019 - $740.80 per week or $19.49 per hour, with an average workers wage of $1280 per week

· Australia has a larger population of camels than Egypt


Flags of Australia

The Australian Flag is a blue background with the union jack in the top right hand corner, a white seven pointed Commonwealth Star under that, and 5 stars on the right depicting the Southern Cross constellation.

The Aboriginal flag of Australia was created in the 1970s. The top black half represents the Aboriginal people, the bottom half is red represents the red earth, and in the center is a yellow circle which represents the sun.


Size of Australia

7.6 million square kilometres, almost 3 million square miles (roughly the same size as mainland USA)


Geography

Being in the Southern Hemisphere, seasons are – Summer (December, January, February), Autumn (March, April, May), Winter (June, July, August), Spring (September, October, November. In the north of Australia, being tropical, there are two other named seasons – The Wet, or Monsoon Season (December – March), and the Dry Season (April – November)


Who discovered it

· Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. These indigenous tribes are the traditional owners of the land, between 40,000 – 70,000 years ago

· Chinese in 1400s, Willem Janszoon, a dutchman in 1600s (Australia was originally called New Holland), James Cook, for England in 1770.

· First settlers from England landed on 26 January 1788, as a convict colony


Population

More than 85% of Australians live within 50 kms of the coast

2.66 people per km


Language

English. Australian sign language is different than British or US sign language


Commonwealth Coat of Arms

A shield depicting symbols of the six states, with a kangaroo on the left and an emu on the right









National Anthem

Advance Australia Fair


States and Territories of Australia

The six state are: Western Australia (WA), South Australia (SA), Queensland (QLD), New South Wales (NSW), Victoria (VIC) and Tasmania (TAS). The territories are: The Northern Territory (NT) and the Australian Capital Territory (ACT).


National Symbols

Bird – Emu

Gemstone - Opal

Flower – Golden Wattle

Colours – Green and Gold


Currency – Australian dollar and cents


Food

As a country made up of many cultures, it is difficult to decide what are the most popular food. The humble barbequed sausage (snag), wrapped in piece of bread, with tomato sauce (ketchup) and fried onions is almost mandatory at a mates barbeque. They are so popular, local charities sell them outside DIY stores to raise money, usually on weekends.

Another interesting fact - The average Australian drinks over 90 litres of beer a year, but that doesn’t even get us in the top ten list


Animals

· Koalas (never a bear, they are marsupials - mammals that raise their young in a pouch), kangaroos and wallabies (more marsupials), wombats, platypus, echidna, dugong, emu









· Killer animals include: stonefish, sharks, crocodiles, box jellyfish, snakes, spiders

· Wombat poop is square shaped (kids love this fact)

· There are more kangaroos than people

· There are more than 3 times the sheep as people


Famous actors who identify as Australian

Errol Flynn, Heath Ledger, Russel Crowe (born in New Zealand), Hugh Jackman, The Hemsworths, Mel Gibson (born in New York), Rod Taylor, Eric Bana, Bryon Brown, Guy Pearce, Paul Hogan, Margot Robbie, Olivia Newton-John (born in England), Nicole Kidman (born in Hawaii), Cate Blanchett, Ton Collette, Isla Fisher (born in Oman)


Famous bands and singers who identify as Australian

ACDC, INXS, Cold Chisel, Crowded House, Bee Gees, Midnight Oil, Men at Work, Silverchair, Powderfinger, Skyhooks, The Church, Savage Garden, The Seekers

Michael Hutchence, Jimmy Barnes (born in Scotland), John Farnham (born in England), Nick Cave, Keith Urban (born in New Zealand), Kylie Minogue, Helen Reddy, Olivia Newton-John (born in England), Chrissy Amphlett, Jessica Mauboy


What do we export

· Minerals, including coal, gas, iron, copper, tin

· Precious metals – including gold and silver

· Gems -including opals (the gem of Australia), diamonds,

· Sugar Cane

· Fruit – including stone fruit, apples, oranges, mangoes, pineapples, bananas

· Vegetables – a wide and fantastic variety of all vegetables

· Meats – sheep, beef cattle, pigs, poultry and milk

· Cereals – wheat, barley, oats, corn, rice, beans, lentils

· Aluminum

· Wine, there are over 60 wine regions in Australia, and we win lots of international awards


Famous Australian Invention

· Invented the wine cask

· Black box flight recorder

· Spray on skin

· Stainless steel braces

· Electronic Pacemaker

· Google maps – it was called Where 2 technologies, sold to Google in 2003

· Polymer (plastic like) bank notes – each one a different colour

· Electric Drill

· Winged keel (by Ben Lexcen, displayed first in Perth during the American Cup in 1983 – Australia won)

· Ultrasound scanner

· Plastic Spectacle Lens

· Inflatable escape slide and raft used on planes

· Wi Fi (1992 by the CSIRO)


Happy Travels!

#maturesolotraveler #mature #solo #traveler #myaustralianstory #australianfacts

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