Eastern states of Australia

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The Eastern Australian states. States in red are always defined as eastern. The term can sometimes be applied to the states in orange Australia eastern states.png
The Eastern Australian states. States in red are always defined as eastern. The term can sometimes be applied to the states in orange

The eastern states of Australia are the states adjoining the east coast of Australia. These are the mainland states of Victoria, Queensland, and New South Wales; the Australian Capital Territory and Jervis Bay Territory, while not states, are also included. The term usually includes the island state of Tasmania. On some occasions, the state of South Australia is included in this grouping.

States and territories of Australia first-level subdivision of Australia

The states and territories are the first-level administrative divisions of the Commonwealth of Australia. They are the second level of government in Australia, located between the federal and local government tiers.

Australia Country in Oceania

Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania and numerous smaller islands. It is the largest country in Oceania and the world's sixth-largest country by total area. The neighbouring countries are Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and East Timor to the north; the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to the north-east; and New Zealand to the south-east. The population of 25 million is highly urbanised and heavily concentrated on the eastern seaboard. Australia's capital is Canberra, and its largest city is Sydney. The country's other major metropolitan areas are Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide.

Mainland is a contiguous landmass that is larger and often politically, economically and/or demographically more significant than politically associated remote territories, such as exclaves or oceanic islands situated outside the continental shelf.


Regardless of which definition is used, the eastern states include the majority – around 80% – of the Australian population, the federal capital, Canberra, and the three largest cities: Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane. It also includes: the Gold Coast, Queensland; Newcastle, New South Wales; and Wollongong, New South Wales as the three largest non-capital cities in the country. In terms of climate, the area is dominated by a humid subtropical zone, with some tropical (Queensland) and oceanic climate (Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, New South Wales) zones. In most situations, the eastern states are defined as those who use Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST), and that is the definition that this article will adhere to, unless noted.

Canberra capital city of Australia

Canberra is the capital city of Australia. With a population of 410,301, it is Australia's largest inland city and the eighth-largest city overall. The city is located at the northern end of the Australian Capital Territory, 280 km (170 mi) south-west of Sydney, and 660 km (410 mi) north-east of Melbourne. A resident of Canberra is known as a Canberran. Although Canberra is the capital and seat of government, many federal government ministries have secondary seats in state capital cities, as do the Governor-General and the Prime Minister.

Sydney City in New South Wales, Australia

Sydney is the state capital of New South Wales and the most populous city in Australia and Oceania. Located on Australia's east coast, the metropolis surrounds Port Jackson and extends about 70 km (43.5 mi) on its periphery towards the Blue Mountains to the west, Hawkesbury to the north, the Royal National Park to the south and Macarthur to the south-west. Sydney is made up of 658 suburbs, 40 local government areas and 15 contiguous regions. Residents of the city are known as "Sydneysiders". As of June 2017, Sydney's estimated metropolitan population was 5,230,330 and is home to approximately 65% of the state's population.

Melbourne City in Victoria, Australia

Melbourne is the capital and most populous city of the Australian state of Victoria, and the second most populous city in Australia and Oceania. Its name refers to an urban agglomeration of 9,992.5 km2 (3,858.1 sq mi), comprising a metropolitan area with 31 municipalities, and is also the common name for its city centre. The city occupies much of the coastline of Port Phillip bay and spreads into the hinterlands towards the Dandenong and Macedon ranges, Mornington Peninsula and Yarra Valley. It has a population of approximately 4.9 million, and its inhabitants are referred to as "Melburnians".

Divisions between the east and west

Since the 1980s, governments have proposed building a high-speed rail in Australia. However, this rail would only go through the eastern states of Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. [1] [2] Adelaide has often been included in the proposal, however former Greens leader Bob Brown said that a rail connecting Perth was inevitable. [3]

High-speed rail in Australia

High-speed rail in Australia has been under investigation since the early 1980s. Every Federal Government since this time has investigated the feasibility of constructing high speed rail, but to date nothing has ever gone beyond the detailed planning stage. The most commonly suggested route is between Australia's two largest cities, Sydney and Melbourne, which is the world's second busiest air corridor. Various corridors have been proposed for a potential high-speed line.

Bob Brown Former Australian Greens politician, medical doctor, environmentalist

Robert James Brown is a former Australian politician, medical doctor, and environmentalist who is a former Senator, and former Parliamentary Leader of the Australian Greens. Brown was elected to the Australian Senate on the Tasmanian Greens ticket, joining with sitting Greens Western Australia senator Dee Margetts to form the first group of Australian Greens senators following the 1996 federal election. He was re-elected in 2001 and in 2007. He was the first openly gay member of the Parliament of Australia, and the first openly gay leader of an Australian political party.

Politicians and newspapers from Western Australia frequently use the term(s) to emphasise the "them and us" attitude with respect to the state's isolation from the rest of the country. For example, in 2016 WAtoday ran an article with the headline "Ten reasons why Perth trumps the East Coast of Australia". [4]

Western Australia state in Australia

Western Australia is a state occupying the entire western third of Australia. It is bounded by the Indian Ocean to the north and west, and the Southern Ocean to the south, the Northern Territory to the north-east, and South Australia to the south-east. Western Australia is Australia's largest state, with a total land area of 2,529,875 square kilometres, and the second-largest country subdivision in the world, surpassed only by Russia's Sakha Republic. The state has about 2.6 million inhabitants – around 11 percent of the national total – of whom the vast majority live in the south-west corner, 79 per cent of the population living in the Perth area, leaving the remainder of the state sparsely populated.


WAtoday is an online newspaper, focusing its coverage on Perth and Western Australia. It was established on 10 June 2008, and is owned by Fairfax Digital.

In 2015 international visitors in Australia spent $24.1 billion. The eastern states and territory made $20.5 billion of that total, or 85%. [5] [6] Likewise, the eastern states collected 8,588,000 (85%) individual visits to a state over that year, out of a possible 10,133,000. [5]


The combined population of Queensland, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory, Victoria and Tasmania is 19,484,100, or 81% of Australia's population. [7] These five states and territory cover 2,829,463 km², or 37% of Australia's total land area. [8]


Greater Capital City Statistical Area (GCCSA) or Significant Urban Areas (SUA), with a population of over 30,000, from north to south:

City [9] State/territoryPopulationPercentage of national population
Cairns Queensland178,6490.80%
Townsville Queensland162,292 [10] 0.73%
Mackay Queensland85,0400.36%
Rockhampton Queensland80,3450.38%
Gladstone Queensland32,0730.14%
Bundaberg Queensland70,5400.32%
Hervey Bay Queensland48,6800.22%
Sunshine Coast Queensland297,3801.33%
Brisbane Queensland2,274,56010.18%
Toowoomba Queensland113,6250.51%
Gold Coast-Tweed Heads Queensland/New South Wales614,3792.75%
Coffs Harbour New South Wales68,0520.29%
Tamworth New South Wales41,8100.18%
Port Macquarie New South Wales44,8750.19%
Dubbo New South Wales36,6220.16%
Newcastle-Maitland New South Wales430,7551.83%
Orange New South Wales39,7660.17%
Central Coast (Gosford)New South Wales304,7531.36%
Bathurst New South Wales35,3910.15%
Sydney New South Wales4,840,62820.61%
Wollongong New South Wales289,2361.23%
Bowral-Mittagong New South Wales37,4950.16%
Nowra-Bomaderry New South Wales35,3830.15%
Mildura-Wentworth Victora/New South Wales49,8360.21%
Wagga Wagga New South Wales55,3640.24%
Canberra-Queanbeyan Australian Capital Territory/New South Wales422,5101.80%
Albury-Wodonga New South Wales/Victoria87,8900.37%
Shepparton-Mooroopna Victoria49,0790.21%
Bendigo Victoria91,6920.39%
Ballarat Victoria98,5430.42%
Melbourne Victoria4,440,32818.90%
Warragul-Drouin Victoria32,6980.14%
Geelong Victoria184,1820.78%
Traralgon-Morwell Victoria40,8510.17%
Warrnambool Victoria33,8560.14%
Devonport Tasmania30,4450.13%
Launceston Tasmania86,3930.37%
Hobart Tasmania219,2430.93%

See also

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Mainland Australia island in Australia

Mainland Australia is the main land mass of the Commonwealth of Australia excluding Tasmania and other offshore islands and external territories. The land mass also constitutes the mainland of the Australian continent, and the term, along with continental Australia, can be used in a geographic sense to exclude surrounding continental islands. Generally, the term is applied to the states of New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia, and South Australia, as well as the Northern Territory, Australian Capital Territory, and Jervis Bay Territory.


  1. "Turnbull plan to put Australia back on the slow road towards high-speed rail". The Age.
  2. "Greens to push $40bn fast-rail link to Sydney". The Age. Archived from the original on 4 November 2012.
  3. "Study on the impact of a high-speed rail line on Sydney Airport". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 7 November 2012.
  4. Rebecca Boteler (29 March 2016). "Ten reasons why Perth trumps the East Coast". WA Today.
  5. 1 2 http://www.tra.gov.au/documents/ivs/IVS_one_pager_Dec2015_FINAL.PDF
  6. "International Visitors In Australia: Year Ending December 2015" (PDF). Tourism Research Australia. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 March 2016.
  7. "Australian Demographic Statistics, Mar 2016". abs.gov.au. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 22 March 2016. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  8. "Area of Australia – States and Territories". ga.gov.au. Geoscience Australia. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  9. "Census of Population and Housing".
  10. "2011 Census QuickStats: Townsville".

Further reading

Coordinates: 27°S146°E / 27°S 146°E / -27; 146