Queensland is the second largest and third most-populous state in Australia covering an area of 1,852,642 square kilometres. Queensland has a population of 4,560,059, concentrated along the coast and particularly in the state's South East region. Referred to as the "Sunshine State", Queensland is home to 10 of Australia's 30 largest cities and is the nation's third largest economy.

Queensland is less centralised than most other Australian states, with 50% of the population living outside the state capital, and 25% living outside the South East region. Queensland is home to many regional cities, the most populous being the Gold Coast, the Sunshine Coast, Townsville and Cairns.


Brisbane is the capital and most populous city in Queensland. Its metropolitan area has a population of 2.3 million, and the South East Queensland urban conurbation encompasses a population of more than 3 million.

The Brisbane central business district (CBD) lies in a curve of the Brisbane river. The CBD covers 2.2 square kilometres. The city has a density of 379 people per square kilometre, which is high for an Australian city and comparable to that of Sydney. However like many western cities, Brisbane sprawls into the greater metropolitan area.


Due to its size, there is significant variation in climate across Queensland. Low rainfall and hot humid summers are typical for the inland and west, a monsoonal "wet" season in the far north and warm, temperate conditions along the coastal strip. Elevated areas in the south-east inland can experience temperatures well below freezing in mid-winter but the climate of the coastal strip is influenced by warm ocean waters, keeping the region free from extremes of temperature and providing moisture for rainfall.

However, most of the Queensland populace experience two weather seasons: a "winter" period of rather warm temperatures and minimal rainfall, and a sultry summer period of hot, sticky temperatures and higher levels of rainfall. The coastal far north of the state is the wettest place in Australia, with Mount Bellenden Ker, south of Cairns, holding many Australian rainfall records with its annual average rainfall of over 8 metres. It is not uncommon for locations in this area to receive more rain in 24 hours during the wet season than the majority of Queensland receives in a year.


In Queensland there are currently 1234 state schools and 492 independent and catholic schools. Queensland state schools offer students a range of programs, high quality teaching and pathways to university or training.

Approved kindergarten programs help to prepare children for the Prep year. Children must be at least 4 by 31 July in the year they attend the program. Kindergarten programs are not compulsory. Prep is the first year of school. Children must be 5 by 30 June in the year they enrol.

Primary school covers Years 1 to 7 and Secondary school covers Years 8 up to 12.

Secondary schools provide educational programs to students of compulsory school age. A child is considered to be of compulsory school age from 6 years and 6 months until they turn 16, or they complete Year 10 (whichever comes first). A further two years of senior education is available for those wishing to continue formalised learning in school as their compulsory participation option. This will usually then allow students to move on to a university or TAFE college.

The state's first university, the University of Queensland was established in 1909 and apears amongst the top 100 universities in several global rankings. James Cook Unversity was set up in 1970 to become the first tertiary education institution in North Queensland, Griffith University was established in the Brisbane suburb of Nathan in 1971 and Bond University was established in 1989 as a not-for-profit university, the first of its type in Queensland. Others include the Queensland University of Technology, the Central Queensland University, the University of Southern Queensland and the University of the Sunshine Coast.


A large number of houses are in a style known as Queenslander and are primarily of timber construction and can be low or high-set, one to two stories. The term is primarily applied to residential construction, although some commercial and other types of construction are identified as Queenslander. The form of the typical Queenslander style residence distinguishes Brisbane's suburbs from other capital cities.

The Brisbane metropolitan area median property price was $844,000 in December 2014. For more market information including prices on specific suburbs (including regional areas), advice on purchasing property and properties for sale visit the Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) website.

There is also a wide range of rental options available in Brisbane – from basic units to luxury mansions, short or long term and furnished or unfurnished. The median rent for a three bedroom house in the Brisbane metropolitan area was approximately $590 per week in March 2015.

International transport links

Brisbane Airport is the primary international airport serving Brisbane and South East Queensland. It is the third busiest Australian airport by aircraft movements. The airport services 26 airlines flying to 42 national and 28 international destinations, in total amounting in more than 21.8 million passengers who travelled through the airport in 2013. Brisbane Airport's annual passenger numbers are expected to reach more than 25.6 million by 2015 and around 50 million by 2035.

Brisbane has the third highest number of domestic connections in Australia following Sydney and Melbourne. The airport has international and domestic passenger terminals and two runways. Brisbane Airport is accessible from the central business district by motorway and rail.


The ecconomy of Queensland primarily built upon mining, agriculture, tourism and financial services. Queensland's main exports are coal, metals, meat and sugar.

The tourism industry plays a key role in the economies of regional areas and supports thousands of small businesses. Queensland experiences the second highest volume of tourists after New South Wales. Foreign backpackers and students on working holiday visas make up a large proportion of international visitors. The tourism industry in Queensland employs 5.7% of the workforce, or about 119,000 people and accounts for 4.5% of the state's GSP directly generating A$$8.8 billion to the state’s economy.

Business opportunities

Queensland's 403,000 small businesses are the foundation of the state's economy, representing over 97 per cent of all businesses state-wide and employing approximately 50 per cent of all private sector workers.

The service industries in Queensland represented the largest share of small business across the state (82.6 per cent), while agriculture, forestry and fishing represented the second greatest share (10.8 per cent). Manufacturing and mining trailed behind representing 3.9 per cent and 0.4 per cent of small business in the state, respectively.

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