Impress the locals with your extensive knowledge with these 22 interesting facts about Cocos Keeling Islands!
- Cocos Islands is an archipelago and a territory of Australia, located in the Indian Ocean.
- The archipelago consists of 27 islands, although only 2 are inhabited.
- Its nearest neighbours are Maldives and Sri Lanka to the northwest, Singapore to the northeast, Christmas Island to the east and Australia to the southeast.
Flag of Cocos Keeling Islands
- If you fancy snorkelling around these beautiful islands to explore the coral and fish that live in these crystal clear waters, follow the coordinates of 12.1167° S, 96.9000°
- The islands are all fairly flat and made up of low-lying coral.
- The total land area of Cocos Islands is 5.4 square miles (14 square kilometres)…
- …that’s around 1/3 the size of Oxford.
- Cocos Islands’ population was just 544 in 2016…
- …that’s around 1/250 of the population of Oxford!
Underwater, Cocos Keeling
- In case you were wondering, residents here are known as Cocos Islanders.
- Unusually, the capital here is an island rather than a town or city. West Island covers an area of 2.4 square miles (6.2 square kilometres) and had a population of around 120 in 2014.
- West Island also happens to be the largest of the 27 islands, with 6 islands measuring less than 0.01 square miles!
- Cocos Islanders enjoy a tropical climate with high humidity and high temperatures, which are moderated by trade winds from May to September.
- Amazingly, the islands contain no native mammals! There are, however, two species of rodent, four species of reptile (including a blind snake!) and many beautiful species of bird!
- The official languages of Cocos Islands are Malay and English.
- Popping by after a trip around Australia? You can use your left over money as the Australian Dollar is the official currency here, too.
- Although the islands were discovered by Captain William Keeling in 1609, they weren’t inhabited until the 19th century!
- Unsurprisingly, most dishes of the Cocos Islands feature rice and fish, which is often fried or curried. Delicious!
- As an Australian territory, Cocos Islands has no military, although it does have a 5 person strong police force!
- Cocos Islands grows vegetables, coconuts, bananas and pawpaws (papaya).
- Its industry consists of tourism and copra (dried coconut kernels) products.
- This beautiful country exports copra.
Do you know any interesting or fun facts about Cocos Keeling Islands that we missed? Share them here in the comments section below!