Australia is the sixth-largest country by land area. It is comparable in size to the 48 contiguous United States. Australia is bordered to the west by the Indian Ocean, and to the east by the South Pacific Ocean. The Tasman Sea lies to the southeast, separating it from New Zealand, while the Coral Sea lies to the northeast. Papua New Guinea, East Timor and Indonesia are Australia's northern neighbours, separated from Australia by the Arafura Sea and the Timor Sea. Australia is highly urbanised with most of the population heavily concentrated along the eastern and south-eastern coasts. Most of the inland areas of the country are semi-arid. The most-populous states are Victoria and New South Wales, but by far the largest in land area is Western Australia. Australia has an area of 2,966,152 square miles and the distances between cities and towns are easy to underestimate. The Government has published a National Public Toilet Map. Australia has large areas that have been deforested for agricultural purposes, but many native forest areas survive in extensive national parks and other undeveloped areas. Long-term Australian concerns include salinity, pollution, loss of biodiversity, and management and conservation of coastal areas, especially the Great Barrier Reef.
New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory (Canberra) (NSW) & (ACT) - New South Wales is Australia's most populous state. The Harbour City of Sydney is Australia's largest city. The coast of New South Wales is lined with beach side communities, each one offering experiences for the traveller. A little inland are the mountain ranges of the Blue Mountains and Snowy Mountains, as well as the purpose built capital city of Canberra, excised from New South Wales. Further inland still expect sweeping plains, turning from agriculture to desert the further inland you venture.
Northern Territory (NT) - From the red deserts surrounding Uluru and Alice Springs up to the tropics of Darwin and Kakadu National Park, the Northern Territory is stunningly beautiful, and easier to access than you might think.
Queensland (QLD) - Famous for its sunny warm weather, Queensland offers coastal exploration from the vibe of the Gold Coast to the tropics of the Great Barrier Reef to the bustling city of Brisbane. It is also home to tropical rainforests of the Daintree National Park, and the island resorts of the Whitsundays. Inland lies the ranges of the hinterland, and further on the vast expanses and beauty of outback Australia.
South Australia (SA) - Renowned for the fine wines of the Barossa Valley, the beauty of the Flinders Ranges and the outback, the wildlife and nature on Kangaroo Island and the beaches and events and culture of the City of Churches, Adelaide.
Tasmania (TAS) - Separated from the mainland by Bass Strait, Tasmania has rugged beauty of Cradle Mountain and the west, the beaches of the east, and the complete wilderness of the south. Hobartwas the site of the second European settlement in Australia, and many historic sites are well preserved. The island has well developed facilities for travellers.
Victoria (VIC) - Small, vibrant and with something for everyone, Victoria has dramatic surf beaches along the southwest and central coast, green rolling farmland and photogenic national parks. The diversity of rural Victoria is very easy to access due in part to its size and well maintained roads. Australia and Victoria's sporting, shopping, fashion and food capital is Melbourne.
Western Australia (WA) - A vast state. The south-west contains the state capital and major city of Perth closely surrounded by the wildflower, wine growing and scenic destinations of Margaret River and Albany. In the far north are the tropics and the beach side destination of Broome. Small townships, roadhouses, mining communities and national parks scattered around the long distances between.