New South Wales has an estimated population of 7.4 million, which makes it the most populous state in Australia. Nearly two-thirds of the population of New South Wales, or 4.67 million people, live in the Greater Sydney area. While it's the most populous state, it is not the most densely populated with 24 people per square mile (9 per square kilometer), which ranks 3rd in Australia.
The capital of New South Wales is Sydney, which is also the most populous state with about 63% of the state's population. Located on the Tasman Sea, Sydney is also the site of the first British colony in Australia, and it is built on the hills surrounding Sydney Harbour, one of the largest natural harbors in the world. Sydney has a metropolitan population estimated at 4.76 million.
The second-largest city is Newcastle. The Newcastle metropolitan area includes most of the Cities of Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Cessnock, and Port Stephens Council with a population of 540,000.
The third most populous city, and the only other city with a metropolitan population of more than 100,000 is Wollongong. This seaside city is 51 miles south of Sydney with a population of 293,000, which makes it the 10th largest city in Australia.
The most common ancestries in New South Wales are:
In 2008, a study conducted by the University of Western Sydney found that racism in Australia has gone down over the years, but it remains high, with New South Wales viewed as the most racist state. 40% of Australians believe some ethnic groups do not belong in the country, and 10% have outwardly racist views, the study found. New South Wales topped this list with 46% of survey respondents saying some ethnic groups do not belong.
Between 2010 and 2011, the population of New South Wales grew just 1.5%, which is lower than the national average of 1.7%. In 2014, it was revealed that New South Wales, along with Victoria, are experiencing accelerated growth. The most significant population growth over a year ending in September 2014 was in Victoria, followed by New South Wales, Queensland, and Western Australia, with these four states together accounting for more than 93% of the country's growth.