Queensland, often abbreviated as Qld, is the second-largest state in Australia in terms of area. Queensland is located in the northeast region of the country, and the Northern Territory borders it to the west, South Australia to the southwest, New South Wales to the south and the Coral Sea and the Pacific Ocean to the east.
Queensland is the third-most populous state in the country with an estimated population of 5.01 million and a population density of 3 people per square kilometer, or 7.5 people per square mile, which ranks 5th in Australia. Queensland is , and it is the 6th largest sub-national entity in the world.
Cities in Queensland
Queensland is home to 10 of the 30 largest cities in Australia.
Brisbane is the capital and largest city of Queensland, and the third largest city in Australia.
The Gold Coast is a coastal city in southeastern Queensland and the second-most populous city in Queensland with an estimated population of 595,000. The Gold Coast is the 6th largest city in Australia and the most populous non-capital city in the country with the largest cross-state metropolitan population in Australia as Tweed Heads, New South Wales falls into its metro area. The Gold Coast's metro area also converges with that of Greater Brisbane to create an urban conurbation of more than 3 million.
Townsville is a city on the northeastern coast of Queensland, and it's the largest urban center in Australia north of the Sunshine Coast with an estimated population of 190,000.
The Sunshine Coast is an urban area in South East Queensland north of Brisbane. The Sunshine Coast is the third largest metropolitan area in Queensland and the 9th largest in Australia with an estimated population of 258,000 in 2014.
Cairns is a regional city on the northern coast of Queensland about 1,056 miles from Brisbane. Popular among foreign tourists for its tropical climate, Cairnes has an estimated population of 144,000.
Toowoomba is located in South-East Queensland about 79 miles west of Brisbane. Queensland Is the second-most populous inland city in Australia and the most populous non-capital inland city with an estimated population of 159,000.
Queensland has the smallest proportion of people living in its capital city than any other state of mainland Australia. Queensland has about 20% of Australia's total population.
The 2011 census found the most common ancestry groups in Queensland are: English (28.1%), Australian (27.4%), Irish (8.4%), Scottish (7.3%) and German (4.7%). About three-quarters of all people in Queensland were born in Australia, but the most common countries of origin for non-native Australians include New Zealand (4.4%0, England (4.1%), South Africa (0.8%), India (0.7%) and Philippines (0.7%). There are more than 155,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Queensland.
The 2011 census found that almost 24% of people in Queensland belong to the Roman Catholic Church, followed by those with no religion (22%), Anglican Church (19%), United Church (8.5%), Presbyterian and Reformed Churches (3.5%) and other religions (25%).
Aboriginal Australians and Torres Strait Islanders have inhabited Queensland for at least 40,000 years. The first European to reach the area was Willem Janszoon, a Dutch navigator, who explored the west coast in 1606. French and Portuguese navigators later explored it before Lieutenant James Cook arrived in 1770, who claimed the east coast for King George III of England, naming Eastern Australia (including Queensland) "New South Wales." The Aboriginal population declined very significantly after the arrival of Europeans due to smallpox and other infectious diseases.
In the mid-1800s, the area was the site of many penal colonies, although the last penal settlement in Brisbane was closed in 1839 with free settlement allowed in 1842. The first free immigrant ship arrived in the area in 1848.
War eventually erupted between Aborigines and settlers, and the Frontier War was known for being the bloodiest in Australia, mostly because Queensland had a larger pre-contact indigenous population than other Australian colonies. About 1,500 English settlers and allies were killed in the fights through the 19th century, while up to 30,000 Aboriginal people were killed.
Queensland became a separate colony from New South Wales in 1859, and its capital became Brisbane.
In 1867, gold was discovered near Gympie in Queensland, sparking a major gold rush. This contributed to the region's growth, and many laborers were brought in from nearby Pacific Island nations over the next 50 years to work on sugar cane fields. Many of these workers worked in conditions of indentured labor or slavery, and some were kidnapped. In 1901, the White Australia policy went into effect, and all foreign workers in the country were deported. After this, the Pacific Islander population decreased dramatically.
Australia was federated in 1901, at which time Queensland had a population of 500,000.
- Queensland was named in honor of Queen Victoria, who separated the colony from New South Wales on June 6, 1859, a day now celebrated as Queensland Day.
- Queensland is home to 5 of the 11 World Natural Heritage areas of Australia, including the Wet Tropics, Riversleigh Fossil Fields, Fraser Island, Scenic Rim National Parks, and the Great Barrier Reef, which is also one of the Wonders of the World.
- It's believed that the Queensland area was inhabited originally by the native Australians or Torres Strait Islanders between 40,000 and 65,000 years ago.
- Queensland became the first Australian colony to establish its parliament.
- Cane toads were brought into Queensland in 1935 as an unsuccessful attempt to reduce the number of French's Cane and Greyback Cane beetles destroying the region's sugar cane plants. Initially, 102 toads were imported, by 1937, 62,000 toadlets were introduced into the wild, and they have now grown in number and range, making their way into Western Australia. Since then, the number of native predatory reptiles has declined.