The other day whilst looking at the collections of vintage maps on Pictureboxblue, I realized that there were no maps of Australasia. This collection is to remedy that omission.
Strictly speaking, Australasia is not a continent. The Australian continent is distinguished from the country of Australia, by the landmasses, which sit on Australia’s continental plate. These are mainland Australia, Tasmania and the island of New Guinea.
However, the term Australasia also includes the Islands of New Zealand. Which are included in this collection of maps of Australasia.
New Zealanders feel they sometimes get missed off world maps. I once made a world map pillow out of denim and in the comments, many New Zealanders, thanked me for making sure that their Islands were included in the design.
Australasia is part of Oceania. Oceania is a geographic region that spans the Eastern and Western Hemispheres. It also includes Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia.
Facts About Australasia
- Australasia is the smallest continental region in the world and the second least populated after Antarctica.
- According to the Britannica Encyclopedia, Australia is not considered an Island because it’s already a continent. Apparently, it can’t be both!
- The highest point in Australasia is Mount Wilhelm (4509 m) in Papua New Guinea.
- The longest river is the Darling River (2,739 km) in Australia.
- Australasia is the flattest continent, with much of Australia being desert.
- The plant life of Australasia is wide and varied, and in some cases unique to the continent. The tropical island regions are home to dense forests, with coconut palms and mangroves growing nearer the shorelines.
- The continent is home to the world’s largest coral reef, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. At 2000km, the coral reef is the largest ecosystem in the world.
The Vintage Maps of Australasia
All the maps of Australasia in this collection are in the Public Domain. To download the map that you want, click on the title above that map. A higher resolution map will open as a new window in your browser.
If you right-click on that map with your mouse, you will have the menu option to save that Australasian map to your hard drive.
This is A. J. Johnson’s 1870 map of Australia, the East Indies, and Southeast Asia. Covers from Modern-day Thailand and Vietnam south to include all of the East Indies, the Philippines, New Guinea, and the continent of Australia. The map offers superb detail, with numerous islands, states, cities, and geographical areas labeled and color-coded.
The map shows an advanced state of Australian exploration, noting the explorations of Burke, Wills, Stuart, and Gregory. An inset in the lower-left quadrant details New Zealand. Text in the lower quadrants notes counties in each province of Australia.
This fascinating hand-colored 1818 map by Edinburgh cartographer John Pinkerton depicts Australia (as New Holland with Van Diemen’s land no longer attached), New Zealand (depicts only two islands), and parts of Micronesia and Polynesia (nothing is in quite the right place). Without a doubt, one of the finest and most important maps of Australia to appear in the 19th century.
New Holland is a historical European name for mainland Australia. The name was first applied to Australia in 1644 by the Dutch seafarer Abel Tasman.
This map of Oceania is from the book “Australia in 1897” by Petherick, Edward Augustus.
Map from the book “The commonwealth of Australia; federal handbook“, 1914.
A lovely colorful map from the 1907 edition of “The Catholic Encyclopedia“.
A chart of Australasia showing the depth of the sea.
The Port of Hobart the finest deep-water port in Australasia – a map of sea lanes into the harbor and statistical information. With local advertising around the border.
The Mercator projection is a cylindrical map projection presented by the Flemish geographer and cartographer Gerardus Mercator in 1569. It became the standard map projection for navigation because it is unique in representing north as up and south as down everywhere while preserving local directions and shapes.
Johann Matthias Christoph Reinecke’s map of the Western Pacific Ocean, Australia, Southeast Asia, etc.
Australasia has some colorful unique wildlife, flora and fauna. And on this site, there are some stunning illustrations of the coral reef of the Great Barrier reef and the amazing parrot paintings of Edward Lear.