OCEANIA

Oceania (sometimes Oceanica) is a geographical, and often geopolitical, region consisting of numerous lands—mostly islands in the Pacific Ocean and vicinity. The term “Oceania” was coined in 1831 by French explorer Dumont d’Urville. The term is also sometimes used to denote a continent comprising Australia and proximate Pacific islands, and is one of eight terrestrial ecozones.

The boundaries of Oceania are defined in a number of ways. Most definitions include Australia, New Zealand, and New Guinea, and all or part of the Malay Archipelago. Ethnologically, the islands that are included in Oceania are divided into the subregions of Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia.

Extent

Oceania is traditionally understood as being composed of three regions: Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia. As with any region, however, interpretations vary; increasingly, geographers and scientists divide Oceania into Near Oceania and Remote Oceania.

Most of Oceania consists of island nations comprising thousands of coral atolls and volcanic islands, with small human populations. Australia is the only continental country but Indonesia has land borders with Papua New Guinea, East Timor, and Malaysia. If the Australia-New Guinea continent is included then the highest point is Puncak Jaya in Papua at 4,884 m (16,024 ft) and the lowest point is Lake Eyre, Australia at 16 m (52 ft) below sea level.

Territories and regions

Descriptions of the regions and constituents of Oceania vary according to source. The table below shows the subregions and countries of Oceania as broadly categorised according to the scheme for geographic subregions used by the United Nations.  These territories and regions are subject to various additional categorisations, of course, depending on the source and purpose of each description.

Name of region, followed by countries
and their flags
Area
(km²)
Population Population density
(per km²)
Capital  
Australasia
 Australia 7,686,850 22,028,000 2.7 Canberra  
 New Zealand 268,680 4,108,037 14.5 Wellington  
Dependencies/Territories of Australia:
 Christmas Island 135 1,493 3.5 Flying Fish Cove  
 Cocos (Keeling) Islands 14 632 45.1 West Island  
Australia Coral Sea Islands 3        
 Norfolk Island 35 1,866 53.3 Kingston  
Melanesia
 Fiji 18,270 856,346 46.9 Suva  
 Indonesia (Oceanian part only) 499,852 4,211,532 8.4 Jakarta  
 New Caledonia (France) 19,060 240,390 12.6 Nouméa  
 Papua New Guinea 462,840 5,172,033 11.2 Port Moresby  
 Solomon Islands 28,450 494,786 17.4 Honiara  
 Vanuatu 12,200 240,000 19.7 Port Vila  
Micronesia
 Federated States of Micronesia 702 135,869 193.5 Palikir  
 Guam (USA) 549 160,796 292.9 Hagåtña  
 Kiribati 811 96,335 118.8 South Tarawa  
 Marshall Islands 181 73,630 406.8 Majuro  
 Nauru 21 12,329 587.1 Yaren  
 Northern Mariana Islands (USA) 477 77,311 162.1 Saipan  
 Palau 458 19,409 42.4 Melekeok  
United States Wake Island (USA) 2     Wake Island  
Polynesia
 American Samoa (USA) 199 68,688 345.2 Pago Pago, Fagatogo  
 Cook Islands (NZ) 240 20,811 86.7 Avarua  
 Easter Island (Chile) 163.6 3,791 23.1 Hanga Roa  
 French Polynesia (France) 3,961 257,847 61.9 Papeete  
 Hawaii (USA) 28,311 1,283,388 72.8 Honolulu  
 Niue (NZ) 260 2,134 8.2 Alofi  
 Pitcairn Islands (UK) 5 47 10 Adamstown  
 Samoa 2,944 179,000 63.2 Apia  
 Tokelau (NZ) 10 1,431 143.1  
 Tonga 748 106,137 141.9 Nukuʻalofa  
 Tuvalu 26 11,146 428.7 Funafuti  
 Wallis and Futuna (France) 274 15,585 56.9 Mata-Utu  
Total 9,037,695 38,894,851 4.3  
Total minus mainland Australia 1,350,845 17,844,851 13.2

 -Enjoy the following videos about Oceania!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMOZ2j21VZo 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lE1eT-zaa4g

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