Cultural Info: Australia
Did You Know...
For years Australians have been trying to change their national flag because they believe it shows major links with the British Union Jack, and these links do not reflect properly modern Australian society. In fact, Australians do not see themselves as English and they tend to refer to English people as "Pome" (which is an historical term that means "prisoners of Mother England").
In Australia there are flora and fauna that cannot be found anywhere else in the world, and vegetation covers more than 90% of the land. In fact, Australia is the only place where we can still find the "lung fish", a living fossil from the Triassic Era 350 million years ago. The nation-continent varies greatly in its climatic composition, and it includes rainforests, ancient rock formations, and beautiful beaches.
The Australian population is vary in its composition, in fact 1 in 4 citizens was born in another country. Because of this melting-pot of cultures, many Australians speak more than one language. The most non-English spoken languages are Italian, Greek, Cantonese, Arabic, Vietnamese, and Mandarin. In Melbourne, Victoria, there is the largest Greek population - second only to Athens, Greece.
Melbourne, capital of the state of Victoria, was awarded the title of most livable city in 2011 and 2012. Despite being historically a convict colony, Australia's homicide rate is 1.2 per 100,000 population - compared to the 6.3 per 100,000 in the U.S.
Australia was the second country in the world to give women the right to vote in 1902, when the Australian Parliament passed the Commonwealth Franchise Act, which also allowed for women to be represented in the parliament.
This fact might scare you away if you do not eat meat - so beware!
Australians eat kangaroo meat. In fact, it is considered to be an healthier alternative to other types of meat because of its low fat content (only 1-2%!). Kangaroo meat is available for purchase in supermarkets, butcher shops, and even restaurant menus.
Travel Tips and Activities
After reading all of these facts, you still have questions and want to hear from a former study abroad student what they experienced in Australia? Check out this page with students reviews!