Australia officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands. It is the worlds sixth-largest country by total area. Neighbouring countries include Indonesia, East Timor and Papua New Guinea to the north; the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and New Caledonia to the north-east; and New Zealand to the south-east.
A highly developed country and one of the wealthiest, Australia is the worlds 12th-largest economy and has the worlds fifth-highest per capita income. Australias military expenditure is the worlds 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, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Trade Organization, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, and the Pacific Islands Forum.
When to go:
When it is winter in the Northern Hemisphere, Australia is basking in the Southern Hemispheres summer, and vice versa. Midwinter in Australia is July and August, and the hottest months are November through March. Remember, unlike in the northern hemisphere, the farther south you go in Australia, the colder it gets.
Average monthly temperature (°C)
+9 hours (New South Wales, Victoria, Australian Capital Territory, Tasmania); +8.5 hours (South Australia); +9 hours (Queensland); +8.5 hours (Northern Territory); +7 hours (Western Australia).
Australian Dollar (AUD).
You need a visa to travel to Australia. British citizens can get the following types of electronic visitor visa: eVisitor visa direct from the Department of Immigration & Citizenship. There is no visa application charge or service fee for this. Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) via your travel agent or airline. There is no visa application charge, but a service fee of AUD 20 applies. Information on all other types of visa is available from the Department of Immigration & Citizenship, or from the Australian High Commission in London. Travellers who have come from an area infected with yellow fever are required to be vaccinated before entering the country.
Australia flights are available from a range of UK airports with connections in London, the Middle East or the Far East. Flight times will take anything from around 19 hours on the fastest flights to Perth to around 30 hours with longer connections. Direct flights to Sydney take around 22 hours.
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