Australia is the smallest and the least densely (husty) populated continent on the Earth. It is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean in the east and the Indian Ocean in the west. In the south there is big island Tasmania. The western part of Australia is a flat plateau (náhorní rovina) called the Great Plateau. The western plateau rises into the Great Sandy Desert and the Great Victoria Desert. The east coast is bordered by the Great Dividing Range, which is known as the Australian Cordilleras. Its highest point is Mount Kosciusko (2228 m) which leas in the Australian Alps
The Lake Eyre is the largest in Australia and it is the lowest point of the continent. The largest river is the Murray and the second largest is Darling. Most Australian rivers are small creeks, which dry up when there is not enough rain.
The northern part of the continent lies in the tropical climate zone and the rest of the continent in the subtropical or temperate zone. The continent is in the southern hemisphere which means that when we have winter there is a summer and conversely (a naopak). One third of the land is dessert. On the northeast there are tropical forests because there are quite rainy but these forest are displaced by savannas or grassland. The southeast is covered with forests of eucalyptus and other evergreen tress.
Many species (druh) of animals live in Australia. The exploration (výzkum) of their evolution is very interesting because for long prehistoric periods this continent was quite isolated from others. In Australia there are e.g. kangaroos, koala bears, wombats, platypus, Tasmanian devils, dingo, emus, parrots, marsupials (vačnatci) and black swans. Some animals were brought from England to Australia. They are sheep and rabbits. Rabbits increased and grew wild and mean a big problem for Australian farmers. You can see lots of poisonous snakes and spiders. The ecological balance is breakable because there are no predators, so there are many carps, rabbits, mouse, and frogs.
Australia was discovered by Portuguese, Spanish and Dutch navigators. Another Dutch navigator Tasman discovered New Zealand and the island Tasmania in 1642. Scientists in Britain wanted to find out if this land really exists, so in 1768 sent the expedition to the southern seas to look for it. The leader of the expedition was Captain James Cook of the Royal Navy, one of the greatest explores of all time. He never did discover the South Land but he did discover the east coast of New Zealand. He met the native people Maoris. Then he sailed northwest and he landed in the bay on the north east coast of Australia, which is today part of Sydney and they saw plants and creatures (stvoření) that no white man had ever seen before. Cook named the place Botany Bay. They also met the black-skinned Aborigines. Then started the colonisation. The first colony was called South Wales. In 19th century immigration to Australia increased because gold was found. In 1901 was found the Commonwealth of Australia. In the 2. WW Australia has the highest loss of the inhabitants.
Australia is industrial and agricultural country. It is rich in minerals. The resources are: gold, coal, iron ore, aluminium, zinc, bauxite, lead (olovo), and uranium. The main industries are: mining, metallurgy, food, car, chemicals and engineering industry. Australia is developed in agricultural too. It is the greatest producer of wool in the world. There are 7 sheep per one Australian. The Australia exports meat, milk products, and fruit and now is very popular wine.
The big problem for the scientists is very thin ozone layer, so there are made many researches.
There are most the thermal power plants and there are no nuclear power plants.
The official title is The Commonwealth of Australia and it is the British dominion. It is independent since 1901. It has a democratic, federal system and the head of state is Queen Elizabeth II. represented by the Governer-General. The head of the government is the Prime Minister. The Commonwealth of Australia consists of 6 states (New South Wales – capital Sydney, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania) and 2 territories (The Australian Capital Territory, The Northern Territory).
There is Federal Government for the whole Australia and each state has its own Government and constitution. The Federal Parliament has its seat in Canberra and is divided into the Senate and the House of Representatives. There are compulsory elections so you have to go vote or you will get some penalty.
The currency is Australian dollar. The language is Australian English but the Australian expressions are very different from English so it is not easy to understand.
Symbols + cities + others
The Australian national flag consists of British flag symbol and large blue field in which 5 stars arranged in the form of the Southern cross constellation. The large white star under the British Union Jack symbolizes 6 Australian states and 1 territory.
The inland is very thinly populated and 70 % of people live in cities. The capital is Sydney. It is the largest city in Australia. Well known is the Opera House in the Bay near Harbour Bridge. There are lots of parks in city centre. Canberra is the capital of Commonwealth of Australia. It’s much smaller than Sydney. It is seat of the Federal Parliament. The others towns are: Pert, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Darwin and Hobart (the largest town in Tasmania).
The well-known monuments and natural beauties are the Ayers Rock in Urulu – the National Park, Great Barrier Reef in the northeast in the Coral Sea (Velká útesová bariéra)
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Canada, Australia and other English speaking countries
Australia and New Zealand
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