Oceania has 14 independent countries and several dependent territories. Below is each country’s capital and some information about each one.
Australia’s capital is Canberra, which serves as the seat of government of Australia. Canberra’s population is around 427,000, making it the largest inland city and the eighth-largest city overall. Like Washington D.C. in the U.S. and Brasilia in Brazil, Canberra was a planned city separate from any Australian state. Many government institutions, national monuments, and museums are in the capital city; however, it does not have its own local government or council like other Australian cities have.
Fiji’s capital is Suva, located on the country’s island of Viti Levu. The capital city has a population of about 94,000 and has a metropolitan population of about 330,000, making it the largest metropolitan city in Fiji. Suva is the political, economic, and cultural capital of Fiji and the South Pacific. The city is home to major corporations and international agencies’ headquarters. It is also a center for arts and performance entertainment. Suva also has a strong tourism industry and many financial and commercial institutions contributing significantly to the country’s economy.
South Tarawa is Kiribati’s capital and largest city, home to over half of its population. The capital has about 60,000 residents in 6.08 square miles (15.76 square kilometers), given got a population density of 9,267 persons per square mile. South Tarawa is home to most of Kiribati’s government, commercial, and educational institutions. It is also the country’s economic hub, housing its principal port, airport, and the majority of enterprises.
Majuro is the capital and largest city of the Marshall Islands. Majuro is a coral atoll (ring-shaped coral reef) of 64 islands. It has a population of about 28,000 people and has a total land area of 3.7 square miles (9.7 square kilometers). The capital’s main population center is called Delap-Uliga-Djarrit (DUD) and comprises three small islands. Majuro’s economy is service sector-dominated and has a shopping district, several hotels, a port, and an international airport.
Palikir is the Federated States of Micronesia’s capital city. Palikir is home to about 6,000 people. It was declared the capital of Micronesia in 1989. English is the official and most common language in the capital; however, there are many other local languages spoken. The capital’s economy is based primarily on agricultural and plantation crops.
Yaren is the de facto capital of Nauru. Yaren is a district home to about 800 people and spanning over just 0.6 square miles (1.5 square kilometers). Nauru does not have cities or an official capital (usually just districts); however, Yaren is accepted as the “main district” by the United Nations. The official languages are English and Nauruan.
New Zealand’s capital is Wellington. New Zealand has had three capitals: Okiato from 1840 to 1841, then Auckland from 1841 to 1865, and Wellington from 1865 to the present. Wellington’s population is 215,000. The capital is home to governmental and cultural institutions and is also the country’s hub for film and special effects. Its economic mainstays are the government, shipping, and tourism.
Ngerlumud became the capital of Palau in 2006, replacing the largest city and former capital, Koror City. Ngerulmud has a population of just 271 people.
Port Moresby is Papua New Guinea’s capital. The city is also called Pom City or Moresby. Port Moresby has 383,000 inhabitants and is the country’s largest city and the largest city in the South Pacific. The capital has seen an economic boom in recent years, resulting in housing, offices, and shopping and commercial facilities rapidly being built.
Apia is the capital and largest city in Samoa. It was the capital of German Somas between 1900 and 1919. The capital is home to about 38,000 people and consists of about 45 independent villages. Apia is home to Samoa’s largest port and only university, the National University of Samoa.
Honiara is the capital of the Solomon Islands. The capital is home to most of the country’s major government buildings and institutions, including the parliament and multiple universities. Honiara developed at a much faster rate economically than other parts of the Solomon Islands, primarily because of tourism. The capital’s population is around 85,000.
Tonga’s capital is Nuku’alofa. The capital’s population is about 25,000, and the city sits at just 10 feet (3 meters) above sea level. The city is the country’s economic hub, home to many markets and businesses, and the headquarters of the Peau Vava’u airline. The city has several hotels for tourists too.
Funafuti is Tuvalu’s capital. Funafuti is the country’s most populous atoll, with about 6,300 people or 60.5% of the population. Sometimes, Fongafale or Vaiaku, two islets in the atoll, are referred to as the capital; however, all are under a single government, so Funafuti is the official capital.
Vanuatu’s capital and largest city is Port Vila or Vila. Port Vila has about 52,000 inhabitants. The capital is the center of Vanuatu’s trade and home to its most important harbor. The city’s primary industries include agriculture, fishing, and tourism. Offshore financing in Port Vila is vital to the country’s economy since Vanuatu is a tax haven.