Australia (the true size of places)


Thanks to Carl, who sent Geography this brilliant postcard of Australia. As you can see a map of (most of) Europe fits right in on top of Australia, and that Europe has a surface area of 3.5m square kiliometres, less than half that of Australia at 7.7m.

You can compare the sizes of anywhere by using a website called The True Size of…


true size



This lets you grab the outline of a country or continent, and drag it over another. In this example I’ve dragged the outline of Colombia over Spain and Portugal:




Have a go yourself, and be amazed!

Here’s a second postcard which is almost the same, also from Australia. This one is from Anne. Geography Cat send you his furry thanks Anne:





Why do countries appear to be different sizes when you look at a variety of maps?



3 Replies to “Australia (the true size of places)”

  1. The true size of different countries and continents is an interesting question. I believe that the reason that depending on which map you look at, countries can appear to be different sizes is to do with the projection used. Representing something large and round on a small, flat piece of paper does require some compromises. The traditional Mercator projection apparently makes Africa look significantly smaller compared to Europe in order to fit it all in, Also the true size of the Oceans is underrepresented especially the Pacific.

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