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“If a man be gracious and courteous to strangers, it shows he is a citizen of the world, and that his heart is no island cut off from other lands but a continent that joins to them.”

Francis Bacon

The Oceania geographic region is surrounded by the Indian, Southern and Pacific Oceans and includes the Australian mainland, which occupies 86% of the region’s area. New Zealand, Tasmania, New Guinea and other smaller tropical islands that are scattered throughout the South Pacific also comprise the Oceania region, for a total of 14 independent countries and 11 dependent overseas territories.The countries that are included in the Oceania region are: Australia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru , New Zealand, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa , Solomon Islands, Tonga , Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.

The following overseas territories within Oceania are: American Samoa (USA), Cook Islands (New Zealand), French Polynesia (France), Guam (USA), New Caledonia (France), Niue (New Zealand), Norfolk Island (Australia) , Northern Mariana Islands (USA), Pitcairn Islands (UK), Tokelau (New Zealand), Wallis and Futuna (France).

Despite the small composition of the Oceania region there are hundreds of different tribal groups throughout that have shaped the cultural heritage of the various island nations and territories. For example, many present-day Oceania nations were populated by Polynesian, Melanesian and Micronesian peoples for thousands of years until European colonization. But on Papua New Guinea alone, there are over 700 different tribal groups within the population of 5 million residents.


Adopt a Backpacker: Seeking Refuge During the COVID-19 Crisis

By Ann-Marie Cahill

For many long-term backpackers, it has been a new adventure in survival and endurance as their usual fallback job opportunities have also been affected by the shut-down.   Read more

Oceania Backpacking & Camping
China Travel Ban - China coronavirus alert

Australian PM Issues Extended Ban On China Travel

China is not happy with Australia after its prime minister extended its travel ban of foreign nationals leaving the country for seven additional days in the wake of a deepening Coronavirus crisis. There will be a weekly review of the China Travel ban, and its decision is the result of … Read more   Read more

Asia Oceania
bushfire ravaged bush land regrowing after the fire

Is it safe to travel to Australia after the bushfires?

By Ann-Marie Cahill

The Australian bushfire season for 2019/2020 has been the worst on record. Globally, news reports have tried to capture the enormity of the situation, often falling short. Red, orange, and black smother the traditional Australian green-and-gold. And yet, from the ashes, there is a sprout of new growth; as a … Read more   Read more

Oceania Social Responsibility
Koala bear in Australia

Australia Wildfires Have Implications Worldwide

As Australia’s wildfires continue to rage on, the massive blaze may have an impact on the entire world.  While the rainfall the area received was celebrated, NASA expects the fires’ smoke will make a complete circle around the world. It’s already being seen in the New Zealand region, turning the … Read more   Read more

Oceania Preservation
Australia 's wildfires

Deaths Climb and State of Emergency Issued in New South Wales

With the wildfires still raging something fierce, Australia’s New South Wales (NSW) government declared a week-long emergency with the region ravaged by the bushfires and the number of deaths still climbing. And, the dangerous conditions will persist into the weekend with strong winds, low humidity and high temperatures expected. The … Read more   Read more

Ayers Rock, Uluru, Australia

Australia Enforces 3-Year-Old Climbing Ban On Uluru

A climbing ban on the sacred Uluru rocks in Australia brought hundreds of people to get in one last climb before enforcement takes effect. The ban, which was passed in 2017, recently went into effect after the Anangu aboriginal people claimed it was a sacred place for many thousands of … Read more   Read more

Oceania Social Responsibility Sustainability
Wellington, New Zealand

New Zealand Implements New Fee For Travelers; Goes Into Effect In October

For people planning to visit New Zealand, there are some extra hoops to jump through before one can be approved to enter the country. The New Zealand government said in March that it would be implementing a new tourism entry approval system called Electronic Travel Authority (ETA, for short). Beginning … Read more   Read more

Ayers Rock, Uluru, Australia

Uluru: Why Climbing is Bad for Australia’s Heart

By Ann-Marie Cahill

Uluru is not just the geographical heart of Australia; it is considered by Indigenous Australians to be the spiritual heart as well.   Read more

Oceania Preservation
The 2019 Sydney Festival (SydFest) celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing. Photo: Ann-Marie Cahill

Sydney Festival 2019: Out of This World

By Ann-Marie Cahill

Sydney comes to life in summer. It is a glorious city, no matter what time of year but in the summer, we have long days, warm nights, hot beaches, and the biggest party in all of Australia: The Sydney Festival.   Read more

Oceania Family Travel Events & Festivals
Australia | Australian flag on a kangaroo

3 “Must See” Australian Sporting Events

When someone mentions Australia as a holiday destination, some of the things that spring to mind are sun, sand and maybe the odd Kangaroo. While it’s true that there are plenty of opportunities to top up your tan when you’re on the other side of the world, Australia is also … Read more   Read more

Oceania Sports
Kakadu National Park. Darwin, Australia

Diversity is one of the many Faces of Darwin, Australia

By Jackie Jones

Darwin, the capital of Australian Northern Territory, is one of those places where people come for a visit and often decide to stay. Its diversity is fascinating and local atmosphere seems to always cheer up.   Read more

Oceania Adventure Off the Beaten Path History Social Responsibility
Large saltwater crocodile in Australia

Near Decade-long search for mammoth crocodile in Australia ends

After an 8-year search, Australian rangers finally caught the massive 15.5 foot-long, 1,300 pound saltwater crocodile that was first seen in 2010. The reptile was captured after being spotted near a boat ramp in Katherine River in Australia’s Northern Territory.  It is estimated to be 60 years old and is … Read more   Read more

Galapagos Island turtles

Touring the Galápagos Islands

By JenLyn Fitz

The Galápagos Islands are considered to be part of Ecuador and these islands are along the equator in the Pacific Ocean.  The Islands consist of eighteen main islands, three smaller islands and one hundred and seven rocks and islets and together they form the Province of Ecuador, the Galápagos National … Read more   Read more

Oceania Adventure
Australia clam.

Australia makes strides to protect its marine life

By Jackie Jones

On November 16, 2012, the Australian government pledged that a series of marine parks would be constructed around its coast, in order to protect the vast, and eclectic marine life.   Read more

Oceania Conservation
John F. Kennedy aith crew of PT-109

TODAY IN HISTORY: The sinking of PT-109 (Aug 2, 1943)

The United States PT-109 was a World War II-era boat used in the Pacific Theater. It was commanded by 26-year-old skipper John F. Kennedy. A Japanese destroyer patrolling on a moonless night smashed into PT-109, killing several crewmen and sending the survivors into the water. Kennedy, an excellent swimmer, towed injured … Read more   Read more

Oceania History