The Commonwealth of Australia is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the world's smallest continent and a number of islands in the Southern, Indian and Pacific Oceans. Australia's closest neighbours are Indonesia, Timor Leste and Papua New Guinea to the north, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and New Caledonia to the north-east, and New Zealand to the south-east.
The population is concentrated mainly in the large coastal cities of Sydney , Melbourne , Brisbane , Perth and Adelaide .
The capital of Australia is Canberra (Australian Capital Territory)
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Australia is divided into 6 states: New South Wales (NSW), Victoria (VIC), Queensland (QLD), South Australia (SA), Western Australia (WA) and Tasmania (TAS) and 2 territories; the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) and the Northern Territory (NT).
The Australian federal parliament directly administers the following territories: Ashmore and Cartier Islands, Australian Antarctic Territory, Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Coral Sea Islands, Heard Island and McDonald Islands, Jervis Bay Territory.
Australia, a clickable map with current time in each time zone
Australia's time zones
Australia has three standard time zones: Western Standard Time (AWST), Central Standard Time (ACST) and Eastern Standard Time (AEST).
Australian Western Standard Time (AWST) covers Western Australia .
The time difference is GMT+8 (AWST is equal to Greenwich Mean Time plus 8 hours (GMT+8)
The state of Western Australia does not observe Daylight Saving Time. The offset is always GMT+8.
Australian Central Standard Time (ACST) covers the state of South Australia , the town of Broken Hill in western New South Wales and the Northern Territory .
The ACST time difference (offset) is GMT/UTC + 9.30 hrs (ACST is equal to Greenwich Mean Time plus 9 and a half hours)
When Daylight saving Time is in use, South Australia and the town of Broken Hill in NSW use Australian Central Daylight Time (ACDT) . The ACDT time difference (offset) is GMT/UTC + 10.30 hrs (ACDT is equal to Greenwich Mean Time plus 10 and a half hours)
The Northern Territory does not observe Daylight Saving Time. The offset is always GMT+9.30.
Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) covers the eastern states of Queensland , New South Wales (with the exception of the town of Broken Hill), Victoria , Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory .
The AEST time difference (offset) is GMT/UTC plus 10 hours (GMT +10). Australian Eastern Daylight Time (AEDT) is in use during the DST period. The AEDT time difference (offset) is GMT/UTC + 11 hours. (ACDT is equal to Greenwich Mean Time plus 10 and a half hours)
The state of Queensland does not observe Daylight Saving Time.
Australia Daylight Saving Time
Summer Time (Daylight Saving Time) is observed in New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania from the first Sunday in October through to the first Sunday in April.
Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia do not observe Daylight Saving Time during the summer months.
Read more about schedules, rules and exceptions on Australian government's website.
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