Americans Confess They Have No Idea How Big Australia Is

by : Julia Banim on : 07 Jan 2020 11:40
Americans Confess They Had No Idea How Big Australia Is@Sci_Phile/Twitter

Australia is the sixth largest country on the planet after Russia, Canada, China, the US and Brazil.

However, although you can’t exactly miss it on the map, the colossal size of the largest island on Earth appears to have eluded many Americans – until now.


The recent horror of the Australian bushfire crisis has led to the country being a global talking point. And some Americans have been left surprised by just how massive it is.

Australia WildfiresPA Images

Science Editor Kyle Hill – who hosts popular YouTube channel Because Science – left many American fans baffled after sharing an image illustrating the size of Australia.

The image shows the shape of Australia overlaid on a map of the US, revealing how the two countries were indeed comparable in size.


Hill tweeted:

If you overlaid what’s happening in Australia right now on the US

The visual was intended to demonstrate the extent of the bushfires in Australia, with fire icons spread across the map. The effect was truly alarming, revealing how much of the land has been engulfed by flames.


But for many commenters, it was the size of Australia rather than the prevalence of the flames they found truly shocking.

One individual exclaimed:

I didn’t realize Australia was so large! Is this to scale?

Another said:


Australia is as large as the US? Didn’t know that. And good lord what is happening, the whole continent truly is burning.

The visual appears to have put the catastrophe in perspective for many people, who have found it effective to imagine how such an inferno would have affected iconic US locations.

Australia BushfiresShutterstock

With so much pop culture and news stories centred around US current affairs, Americans could perhaps be forgiven for imagining their country to be 10 times larger than any other.


However, the reality is Australia is a considerably large country, with a land mass of 7,692,024 sq. km according to the Australian Government website.

To put this into perspective, travelling from Sydney to Perth (east coast to west coast) adds up to approximately the same journey as travelling from New York to Los Angeles, as per About Australia.

You can donate to the Victorian Bushfire Appeal here, with all funds raised going towards giving immediate support for those whose lives have been greatly affected by the blaze.

Queensland residents can formally register as a volunteer in the ongoing bushfire effort at Emergency Volunteering or by calling Volunteering Queensland on 1800 994 100.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]

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Julia Banim

Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.

Topics: News, Americans, Australia, Bushfires


@Sci_Phile/Twitter and 2 others
  1. @Sci_Phile/Twitter


  2. Australian Government

    Australia's Size Compared

  3. About Australia

    Australia's Size Compared