The Australian Capital Territory (ACT)

Flag of The Australian Capital Territory:

The Australian Capital Territory overview

Australian Capital Territory largest cities: Canberra

Total area: 2,358 sq. km.
Population: 326,000 (2004)
Approximate width west to east: 25km
Approximate height, north to south: 50km
Highest point: Mt Ainslee

The main part of the Australian Capital Territory, containing the National Capital, is located in south-eastern New South Wales. Australian Capital Territory is the only state in Australia that does not have a coastline. It lies approximately half way between Sydney and Melbourne. It has an area of rolling plains and grasslands. Most of the population lives in the capital - Canberra.

The smaller part of the Australian Capital Territory is at Jervis Bay, 73 sq km, a large bay on the southern coast of New South Wales.

The Australian Capital Territory history

Australian Capital Territory history began from the first European settler in the district - Joshua John Moore who established a stock station called 'Canberry'. It's thought the name Canberry is based on an Aboriginal name for the area Kamberra or Kambery. The middle of Moore's property is approximately where Canberra's city centre is currently sited. In 1913 Canberra became the official name for the area.

In 1901, the New South Wales Government commissioned a report suggesting possible locations for the seat of Government for the new Commonwealth of Australia. The report suggested three places, Bombala, Yass-Canberra, and Orange.

In 1911 an international competition to design the new capital city of Australia was held. More than 130 entries were received in the competition and the winning entry was submitted by American architect Walter Burley Griffin and his partner and wife, Marion Mahony Griffin.

The Australian Capital Territory was declared on 1 January 1911. The Australian Capital Territory became a self-governing territory in 1989.

The Australian Capital Territory population

In the Australian Capital Territory, the largest English-speaking background birthplace groups are England-born (14 868), New Zealand-born (3562), and Scotland-born (2730). The largest groups from non-English-speaking backgrounds are Germany-born (2628), Italy-born (2583), and Viet Nam-born (2245). These figures compare with an Australian Capital Territory total population of 326 000, an Australia-born total of 243 859, a total overseas-born population of 78 498, and an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander total of 3643.

Migrant communities are much larger than birthplace data suggest because of the presence of second and later generation individuals who identify with those communities. In terms of second generation figures for the Australian Capital Territory, the largest groups from English-speaking backgrounds are England-born (21 455), Scotland-born (4846), and New Zealand-born (3580). The largest from non-English-speaking backgrounds are Italy-born (4093), Germany-born (3778), and Netherlands-born (2927).

The population of some birthplace groups is growing quickly. Others are declining. The highest average annual growth rates in the period 1996-2004 are for Republic of Korea-born (12.6 per cent), India-born (9.5 per cent), and Japan-born (5.0 per cent). Those with the highest average annual rate of decline are Netherlands-born (-2.1 per cent), and Finland-, Greece-, and Northern Ireland-born (all -1.9 per cent). These figures compare with a growth rate of 1.5 per cent per annum for the total population and 1.4 per cent per annum for the Australia-born.

The Australian Capital Territory economy

Useful links:

The Government of Western Australia | rank: 7/10
Links websites, ministers, the Premier's web site, media releases and other useful information.
Western Australian Business News | rank: 5/10
Western Australia's Largest Independent Business Newspaper.

The Australian Capital Territory education

Useful links:

The University of Western Australia | rank: 8/10
This program has a strong international reputation for its postgraduate research, and offers Master of Education, PhD, and Doctor of Education degrees.
Department of Education and Training | rank: 6/10
Home page for the Department of Education and Training.
Edith Cowan University | rank: 7/10
Edith Cowan is a multi-campus institution, offering undergraduate and postgraduate courses in Perth and Bunbury, Western Australia.

The Australian Capital Territory culture

Useful links:

The State Library of Western Australia | rank: 6/10
Catalogues and index plus a guide to the collections, general information and a map of the building. There's also a section for kids.
The Art Gallery of Western Australia Website | rank: 6/10
Presents Australian and international collections and exhibitions. Includes details of events, tours and educational programmes.
Western Australian Ballet | rank: 5/10
Program for the current year, profiles of the artists, company information.

The Australian Capital Territory main attractions

  • Parliament House
  • Black Mountain
  • Lake Burley Griffin
  • Red Hill
  • High Courts of Australia
  • Telecom Tower
  • foreign legations
  • Yarralumla (governor-general's residence)
  • Australian War Museum
  • American War Memorial
  • Captain Cook Water Spout
  • Vietnam war memorial.
Useful links:

Tourism Western Australia | rank: 7/10
Information on travel, tourism, accommodation, events and everything you need to plan your holiday or vacation to Western Australia.
Perth hotels,Perth hotel,Western Australia travel, | rank: 5/10
Western Australia Perth holiday travel information on line.
Western Australia Travel Holiday Destination Information Holiday | rank: 5/10
Western Australia Travel Holiday Destination Information Holiday Guide Product Search and Accommodation Pricing.

The Australian Capital Territory capital

As well as the major federal government departments, Canberra is also home to significant cultural centres such as the National Art Gallery, which has one of the largest collection of modern art. There is also the National Library and the Australian Film and Television Archives, which shows the history of Australia's film, television and radio industries, dating from 1890.