Страница: 3/10

Aborigines were the first people to discover Australia. They may have walked or sailed here from Asia over 60,000 years age. They arrived at a time when the northern parts of Australia had a hot humid tropical climate much like that of Asia today.

Portuguese sailors may have sailed along the coastline of Australia as far back as 1542. Some maps have been found which show parts of what appears to be the Australian coastline. But there is no definite proof that they did.

In 1616 a Dutch trading ship, the Eendracht, on its way to the Indies (now called Indonesia) bumped into west coast of of Australia. Captain Dirk Hartog landed at Shark Bay, looked around a bit but didn't find anything interesting. He nailed a pewter dish to a tree to record his visit. He did not realize that he had found Australia. His is the first recorded European landing in Australia.

Dutch sailors continued see the coastline on their trips and called this land New Holland but didn't bother to visit it

In 1642 a Dutchman named Abel Tasman sighted an island he called Van Diemen's Land. He did not realise that this island was a part of Australia. He also went on to explore New Zealand.

This island was later renamed Tasmania in honour of Abel Tasman

In 1770 an expedition from England lead by Captain James Cook sailed to the south pacific. They were supposed to make astronomical observations. But Captain Cook also had secret orders from the British Admiralty to find the southern continent.

They sailed in the Endeavour. It had a crew of 94 men.

They landed in a bay on the east coast on the 29th of April 1770. Cook first called this place Stingray Bay, then he changed it to Botanist Bay and finally called it Botany Bay because of all the strange and unusual plants there.

He called this new land New Wales and then changed it to New South Wales. He claimed the land for England (even though the land already belonged to the Aborigines).

Captain Cook was also the first European to visit the Great Barrier Reef.

Actually he ran into it and damaged his ship pretty badly. He had to spend seven weeks repairing his ship.



Canberra is a city of about 310,000 people located in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) approximately 200 kilometres from Sydney. Most of the people in Canberra are employed by the federal government.

Canberra is a very young city. The plans for the city were only drawn up in 1911 and construction didn't commence until 1913.

The grand design for the city was drawn up by a relatively obscure american architect named Walter Burley Griffin. The lake which is a central focus of the city today is named after him.

With its imposing buildings, broad boulevards and uncluttered streetscape (there are no billboards, in Canberra) it lacks the charm and vibrancy of more cosmopolitan cities such as Sydney and Melbourne.


The Federal Parliament House is built on top of Capital Hill. It was completed in 1988 and replaces the old parliament house which is located further down the hill. The building was designed to merge into the profile of the hill itself.A stainless steel flag mast 81 metres tall surmounts the building from which flutters the Australian flag (the flag is as big as a double decker bus).

It cost over 800 million dollars to build and is considered to be one of the most attractive parliament buildings anywhere in the world.

The Members Hall is at the very centre of the Parliament complex between the House of Representatives and Senate chambers. It has a large skylight canopy through which can be seen the stainless steel flag mast and the Australian flag.

The House of Representatives Chamber can seat up to 240 Members of Parliament.

Currently there are approximately 148 members. They are popularly elected for three year terms. The numbers of members representing each state is proportional to their populations but there must be must be at least five members from each state.

The Senate Chamber can seat 120 Senators.

Currently there are 76 senators. They are popularly elected for 6 year terms. There are 12 senators from each state and two each from each territory.


Aborigines lived around what is now Canberra for thousands of years.

1820 The first Europeans to visit the Limestones plains where current day Canberra is located were Joseph Wild, James Vaughan and Charles Throsby.

Реферат опубликован: 23/05/2009