Shaping a Nation: A Geology of Australia

Exploring the geology, resources and landscapes of Australia, the book reveals how these have helped to shape this nation's society, environment and wealth.

Largest Waterbodies

Australia's highly variable rainfall and an absence of plentiful natural lakes has necessitated the construction of large capacity reservoirs.

Satellite image of Uluru Northern Territory. Copyright Geoscience Australia. Click to go to Largest Monolith page

Significant Rock Features

Australia has some of the most recognisable rock formations in the world including Uluru in Central Australia which was laid down in an inland sea about 500 million years ago.

Ice covered mountains. Click to go to Highest Mountains page

Highest Mountains

Australia's ten highest mountains are all located within six kilometres of one another.

Mount Beauty and Tawonga South at the foot of Mount Bogong. (Copyright: Nucolorvue Productions). Click to go to Elevations page


Australia has some impressive 'high country' but it is in fact the lowest continent in the world with an average elevation of just 330 metres.

Murray River. Click to go to Longest Rivers page

Longest Rivers

The mighty Murray River is Australia's longest but the Darling River and its upper tributaries is fractionally longer.

Aerial Photo of an Island. Click to go to Islands page


Australia is surrounded literally by thousands of islands, amongst them the world's largest sand island.

Minnamurra Falls. Click to go to Waterfalls page

Significant Waterfalls

Spectacular waterfalls plunge hundreds of metres from Australia's mountain ranges and escarpments.

Aerial shot of a desert


Ten deserts make up nearly 20 per cent of Australia and contribute to it being the second driest continent in the world.

Australian Landforms and their History

Australia's landscape is very distinctive and unique. But it took many millions of years and some amazing climatic and geological processes to produce what we see today.

Landsat image of the Snowy Mountains. Click to go to Landforms from Space page

Landforms from Space

Satellite imagery can reveal distinctive patterns of land cover and land use over a wide area.