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Oceania Countries & Capitals

Instructor: Artem Cheprasov
Oceania is a land composed of a continent, thousands of islands, a country with no capital, and the only Pacific monarchy. Read about these and other intriguing tid-bits as you learn the names of the capitals and countries of Oceania.

Where Is Oceania?

Where can you find a place in this world that includes an island as big as a continent and some islands only as big as a house? It's Oceania, a region of the planet consisting of well over 10,000 islands in the Pacific Ocean, one that is located south of Asia, east of Africa, and West of South America. The biggest island in Oceania is actually considered to be a continent and a country at the same time, one called Australia. There are plenty of other sovereign countries in Oceania, however, so why don't we learn their names and capitals?

Australia, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea

The biggest sovereign nations, by continuous land mass, located in Oceania are Australia, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea. As mentioned before, Australia is a country, a continent, and one really big island all at the same time. Australia was populated by people around 40,000 years ago but it wasn't until the last few hundred years that Western settlers began to colonize this land. Can you guess Australia's capital?

Is it:

Sydney

Melbourne

Brisbane

Perth

If you guessed any of the above, you'd be wrong. Although those answer choices are far more famous cities to those living outside Australia, the capital of this nation is actually Canberra.

Australia and its capital of Canberra.
Australia

Located to the east of Australia is New Zealand. This land is home to the Maori people and it is composed largely of two islands called the South Island and the North Island. Its capital is Wellington.

Another large nation located in Oceania is Papua New Guinea. This island nation was once home to many uncontacted Stone Age tribes, some of which were known to be cannibals up until modern times. The capital of Papua New Guinea is Port Moresby.

Other Countries of Oceania

While the three we just went over are the largest Oceanic states, there are plenty other sovereign nations located here, some of which are composed of many islands spread out over vast distances.

One of these is the Marshall Islands, composed of over 1,200 islands and atolls. One of these atolls, the Bikini atoll, was used as a testing ground for atomic explosions in the mid-20th century. The capital of the Marshall Islands is called Majuro.

The Federated States of Micronesia, with its capital at Palikir, is another Oceanic state. This nation's economy is largely composed of farming and fishing and has English as its official language. While English is also an official language of the Solomon Islands, virtually no one speaks any of it there. Instead, people speak Melanesia pidgin. This nation experienced a lot of fighting during World War II. Its capital is Honiara.

During World War I, New Zealand occupied what is now the nation of Samoa. Samoa became the first Polynesian country to become independent in the 20th century. Its capital is Apia. The capital of the nation of Tuvalu is officially Funafuti. However, the administrative offices of this country's government are actually located in Vaiaku Village. If you've ever seen the web domain extension '.tv', that actually has nothing to do with television. This nation contracted out its country's domain name ('.tv') in exchange for royalties.

Speaking of royalty, the British crown used to control the nation of Fiji. But in 1970 this country became independent. Fiji is one of the most developed nations in Oceania and is a popular tourist destination. Its capital is Suva.

The nation of Fiji and its capital.
Fiji

Only 8 years after Fiji became independent, Palau became a sovereign state as well. At one point the U.S. paid about $700 million to Palau in exchange for use of its land and waterways for strategic concerns. Palau has its capital based in Melekeok.

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