Queensland (locally /ˈkwnzˌlænd/, KWEENZ-land)[note 1] is a state situated in northeastern Australia, the second-largest and third-most populous Australian state. It is bordered by the Northern Territory, South Australia and New South Wales to the west, southwest and south respectively. To the east, Queensland is bordered by the Coral Sea and the Pacific Ocean. To its north is the Torres Strait, separating the Australian mainland from Papua New Guinea. With an area of 1,852,642 square kilometres (715,309 sq mi), Queensland is the world's sixth-largest sub-national entity; it is larger than all but 15 countries. Due to its size, Queensland's geographical features and climates are diverse, including tropical rainforests, rivers, coral reefs, mountain ranges and sandy beaches in its tropical and sub-tropical coastal regions, as well as deserts and savanna in the semi-arid and desert climatic regions of its interior.

Sunshine State
Audax at Fidelis
(Bold but Faithful)
Location of Queensland in Australia
Crown colony, Responsible government
as Colony of Queensland
6 June 1859
Federation1 January 1901
Australia Act3 March 1986
Capital and largest cityBrisbane
Administration77 local government areas
  TypeConstitutional monarchy
Parliamentary democracy
  BodyQueensland Government
  GovernorJeannette Young
  PremierAnnastacia Palaszczuk (ALP)
Legislature Parliament of Queensland Legislative Assembly (93 seats)
Federal representationParliament of Australia
ConstitutionConstitution of Queensland
  Total1,851,736 km2 (714,959 sq mi)
  Land1,729,742 km2 (667,857 sq mi)
  Water121,994 km2 (47,102 sq mi)
Highest elevation1,622 m (5,322 ft)
 (December 2021)[1]
  Density2.8/km2 (7.4/sq mi)
Banana Bender (colloquial)[2]
Time zoneUTC+10 (AEST)
Postal code
ISO 3166 codeAU-QLD
GSP year2019–20
GSP ($A million)$363,524[3] (3rd)
GSP per capita$70,862 (5th)
HDI (2019)0.937[4]
very high · 5th of 8
MammalKoala (Phascolarctos cinereus)
BirdBrolga (Grus rubicunda)
FishBarrier Reef anemonefish
(Amphiprion akindynos)
FlowerCooktown orchid
(Dendrobium phalaenopsis)[5]

Queensland has a population of over 5.2 million,[1] concentrated along the coast and particularly in South East Queensland. The capital and largest city in the state is Brisbane, Australia's third-largest city. Ten of Australia's thirty largest cities are located in Queensland, with the largest outside Brisbane being the Gold Coast, the Sunshine Coast, Townsville, Cairns, Ipswich, and Toowoomba. The state's population is multicultural, with 28.9% of inhabitants being immigrants.[7][8]

Queensland was first inhabited by Aboriginal Australians and Torres Strait Islanders.[9][10] Dutch navigator Willem Janszoon, the first European to land in Australia, explored the west coast of the Cape York Peninsula in 1606. In 1770, James Cook claimed the east coast of Australia for the Kingdom of Great Britain. In 1788, Arthur Phillip founded the colony of New South Wales, which included all of what is now Queensland. Queensland was explored in subsequent decades, and the Moreton Bay Penal Settlement was established at Brisbane in 1824 by John Oxley. Queensland was separated from New South Wales on 6 June 1859 (now commemorated as Queensland Day), thereby establishing Queensland as a self-governing Crown colony with responsible government, named in honour of Queen Victoria.[11] Queensland was among the six colonies which became the founding states of Australia with Federation on 1 January 1901. Since the Bjelke-Petersen era of the late 20th century, Queensland has received a high level of internal migration from the other states and territories of Australia and remains a popular destination for interstate migration.

Queensland has the third-largest economy among Australian states, with strengths in mining, agriculture, transportation, international education, insurance and banking. Nicknamed the Sunshine State for its tropical and sub-tropical climates, Great Barrier Reef and numerous beaches, tourism is also important to the state's economy.

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