Australia won a certain generation’s hearts with Scott and Charlene’s wedding in Neighbours, followed by intense TV love affairs with Home and Away, Heartbreak High and personal favourite – Round The Twist. And yet there’s so much more to Australia – check out our best top 10 Aussie facts I bet you don’t know.
1. The beautifully named Honeysuckle Creek Tracking Station near Canberra shared the very first photos of the 1969 moon landing. Two other stations also received the images, but Honeysuckle’s were of a better standard. The rest, as they say, is history.
2. Despite koalas being an iconic Aussie symbol, Australia is home to more camels than koalas, in fact 10 times as many wild camels to koalas. Australia actually sell camels to Saudi Arabia to assist with their meat production.
3. In 1956 Melbourne was host to the Olympics and has never lost its reputation for sports, in fact the city is thought to be the sporting capital for the world, due to the huge amount of diverse sports which are available to the people of Melbourne.
4. Australian’s are famed for their use of the English language and creation amusing slang terms for example - for example ‘fair dinkum’ means genuine or true and ‘grommet’ is a young surfer. An unsuccessful speech ban which only managed to last 24 hours came into existence in 2005 when Canberra's Parliament House banned their security guards from calling people 'mate'.
5. The Royal Sydney Opera House’s architecture was initially inspired from segments of an orange the architect was eating and if you place the segments of the roof together, it will create an orb.
6. Are you aware that each year Brisbane is famed for hosting the world cockroach championships? No, neither was I.
7. According to Australian folklore, Canberra was hastily chosen as capital city because Sydney and Melbourne could not stop arguing as to which of them should be capital of Australia. However, according to Australian Geographic, the truth maybe entirely different, ‘The truth, however, according to contemporary historians, is that neither Melbourne nor Sydney was ever seriously considered for the role as capital. “The Sydney-Melbourne idea is nonsense, just a perpetuated myth,” says Dr David Headon, Canberra historian.’ Which although likely to be more accurate, is a bit boring and I personally prefer the original tale!
8. Apparently, the kangaroo and emu are on the Australian coat of arms as neither animal can walk backwards, symbolising Australia as a forward-thinking nation. I also had no idea that these animals cannot walk backwards – crazy
9. Somewhat depressingly, according to Lynx’s Deep Space promotional campaign, one in ten Britain’s think Australia is further from the UK than the moon. In fact, you could take 25 one-way trips from the UK to Australia as the moon is 238,000 miles from earth and Australia is only 9,443 miles from the UK.
10. Ned Kelly’s infamous revolt began when his mother, Ellen Kelly was arrested for aiding and abetting in the attempted murder of Constable Arthur Fitzpatrick. Despite Fitzpatrick’s dubious testimony and change in story recount, Ellen Kelly was sentenced to three years hard labour for assaulting the police officer. Thus setting the wheels in motion for an angry Ned Kelly to form the notorious Kelly Gang.