Western Australia is a fascinating part of Australia that is full of natural wonders, exciting adventures, and so many fun facts! It is the largest state in Australia and occupies one-third of the entire country! Western Australia is home to a wide variety of landscapes, including vast deserts, rugged coastlines, and ancient forests.
Here are a few fun facts about Western Australia to get you started:
- Western Australia is home to the happiest animal, the quokka! The quokka’s face always looks like it is smiling.
- The town of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia is home to the Super Pit, which is one of the largest open-pit gold mines in the world.
- Western Australia has pink lakes! These lakes have a pink hue because of the algae in them.
Where is Western Australia?
Western Australia is located in the west of Australia and runs from the very south of the country to the north. To the east of Western Australia you find the Northern Territory and South Australia. Much of the coastline to the west is on the Indian Ocean, however in the south it forms part of the Great Australian Bight.
How big is Western Australia?
Western Australia is BIG. It is around a third of the size of the entire country and covers an area of more than 2.5 million km2.
How many people live in Western Australia?
Around 2.6 million people call Western Australia home, with more than 2 million living in the capital city of Perth.
Western Australian politics
Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders were the first inhabitants of Western Australia prior to colonisation. In 1901 Western Australia joined 5 other states to form the Commonwealth of Australia.
Western Australia is a federated state of Australia, meaning it is part of a group of other states that united to form the Commonwealth of Australia. Western Australia is run by the Premier who is the leader of the political party currently in power. Parliament House is located in Perth.
Western Australia also has a Governor, a representative of the Monarch of Australia, who resides at Government House in Perth and performs constitutional and ceremonial duties in Western Australia.
What language is spoken in Western Australia?
English is the official language of Western Australia, however you may also hear Mandarin, Indonesian and Filipino spoken as the main second languages.
What are the emblems of Western Australia?
Western Australia’s flag is a dark blue flag with a Union Jack in the top left corner. To the right is the state’s emblem, a yellow circle with a black swan in the centre.
The state’s floral emblem is the red and green kangaroo paw and the animal is the numbat. The black swan is the bird emblem which also features on the state’s flag.
Geography of Western Australia
Western Australia has some truly stunning landscapes and huge national parks. The largest national park is Karlamilyi National park and is 13,000 km2 in size.
The Kimberley region in Western Australia is home to many of the oldest rock formations on Earth, some of which are over 3 billion years old!
Let’s talk about beaches. Western Australia has some of the best beaches in the world, including Cable Beach, which has 22 km of pristine white sand. It is also home to the world’s largest fringing reef, the Ningaloo Reef. It is over 300 km long and is home to a wide variety of marine life, including whale sharks, manta rays, and humpback whales.
Thousands of limestone pillars rise up out of the sand in The Pinnacles Desert, creating a unique and otherworldly landscape. It’s like walking through a maze of stone pillars!
Wave rock is a stone formation in the south of Western Australia that looks like a wave that you can surf on! It is 15m high and 110m long!
The Mining industry
Mining is a major industry in Western Australia, contributing significantly to the state’s economy. The state is rich in mineral resources, including iron ore, gold, nickel, and natural gas, making it a top destination for mining companies from around the world.
The Pilbara region in Western Australia is the heart of the state’s mining industry, with vast deposits of iron ore and other minerals. Mining operations in Western Australia are often conducted on a large scale, with massive trucks, drilling equipment, and processing facilities. In fact, some mining trucks are more than 7m high and 14m long!
The mining industry also provides significant employment opportunities for people in the state, even creating new towns so remote workers can be closer to the mine site.
What animals are found in Western Australia?
Western Australia is home to the quokka, a cute and friendly marsupial that is often called “the world’s happiest animal.” Quokkas can only be found on a few small islands off the coast of Western Australia.
The numbat, also known as the banded anteater, is that state’s national animal and is a small marsupial native to Western Australia. It is known for its distinctive appearance, with its long snout, bushy tail, and striped pattern on its back. The numbat feeds almost exclusively on termites, using its long, sticky tongue to extract them from their nests. Unfortunately, the numbat is considered an endangered species.
The black swan is the bird emblem of Western Australia and is one of the largest of the waterfowls.
Fun fact – Did you know that black swans are nomadic and often travel at night?
Which sports are played in Western Australia?
Western Australia is a sports-loving state. The most popular sports in Western Australia include Australian rules football, cricket, rugby, and soccer. Perth is home to two major professional teams, the West Coast Eagles and the Fremantle Dockers, who play in the Australian Football League (AFL).
Western Australia also has a strong cricket culture, with the Western Warriors and the Perth Scorchers representing the state in domestic competitions.
Rugby union and soccer are also popular, with the Western Force and Perth Glory being the major teams in each respective sport. Additionally, Western Australia has a thriving surf culture, with some of the world’s best surf spots located along the state’s stunning coastline.
Last minute fun facts:
- The nickname for people from Western Australia is Sandgropers.
- The jetty at Busselton, south of Perth is the longest timber-piled jetty in the Southern Hemisphere, stretching 1.8km out to sea!
- The Perth mint makes many of Australia’s coins.
Western Australia is a fascinating state that boasts many fun facts and while it might be big, it is definitely worth learning about!