Current Time in Canberra
OverviewWith a history of over fifty thousand years, Australia is an ancient land. Settled by the British in response to the loss of the American colonies, Australia has evolved into an independent nation that plays an incredibly important role in the politics and economy of the Pacific. A diverse and growing nation that grapples both with its colonial past and its international future, Australia is a major tourist destination and a part of several major international alliances. Though from the same colonial tradition as Canada and the United States, the relative isolation of Australia from the rest of the West as well as its unique history has helped to shape it into a country like no other.
Quick Facts about Australia
- Australia's Highway 1 is the world's longest national highway.
- Australia is home to the world's deadliest fish, snake, and spider.
- Aboriginal Australians are considered to have the oldest extant culture on the planet.
- Australia is also home to the world's largest living structure, the Great Barrier Reef.
- The name Australia is derived from the Greek word Australis, or "south".