Scientific topics Landforms

Last updated:27 June 2014

book cover
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.

Shaping a Nation: A Geology of Australia Learn more
Aerial view of Snowy Hydro pipelines
Largest Waterbodies

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

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As per caption
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.

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Sunrise on Main Range peaks - Kosciuszko National Park. Credit: Artefotograf, Wikimedia Commons.
Highest Mountains

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

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The Three Sisters, Echo Point, Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia

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.

Elevations Learn more
An overhead view of a mangrove ecosystem in the Great Sandy Region near Tin Can Bay, Australia
Longest rivers

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

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The islands at the end of the Dampier Peninsula into the Buccaneer Archipelago

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

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Wallaman Falls
Significant Waterfalls

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

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South Australian outback Landscape at sunset
Areas of Australian and territory deserts

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

Areas of Australian and territory deserts Learn more
Colorful Polished Banded Iron Formation (BIF) Rock
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.

Australian Landforms and their History Learn more
Landsat-8 image provided by Geoscience Australia courtesy of the U.S. Geological Survey.
Landforms from Space

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

Landforms from Space Learn more