Officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Neighbouring countries include Indonesia, East Timor and Papua New Guinea to the north, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and New Caledonia to the northeast and New Zealand to the southeast. Australia has three time zones; Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST = GMT +10), Central (ACST = GMT +9 ½) and Western (AWST = GMT +8). The Eastern seaboard of Australia is ten hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT +10) from early April to early October (autumn, winter and Early Spring months). The national capital of Australia is Canberra. There are six states; Queensland (QLD), New South Wales (NSW), Victoria (VIC), Tasmania (TAS), South Australia (SA) and Western Australia (WA). The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) is now self administrating with it's own legislature. The Northern Territory (NT), despite being self administering, can still have it's state laws overturned by the Federal Government.
Brisbane is the capital and most populous city in the Australian state of Queensland and the third most populous city in Australia. Brisbane's metropolitan area has an approximate population of 2 million. A resident of Brisbane is commonly known as a "Brisbanite". Brisbane is named after the river on which it sits which, in turn, was named after Sir Thomas Brisbane, the Governor of New South Wales from 1821 to 1825. The first European settlement in Queensland was a penal colony at Redcliffe, 28 kilometres north of the Brisbane central business district, in 1824. That settlement was soon abandoned and moved to North Quay in 1825. Free settlers were permitted from 1842. Brisbane was chosen as the capital when Queensland was proclaimed a separate colony from New South Wales in 1859.