Victoria, Australia, is the second smallest state in the country. The capital of Victoria is Melbourne and has a very European style with trams, Victorian style buildings and outdoor cafes and pubs. Victoria, itself, is only about the size of the British Isles and is located along the southern tip of the east coast of Australia. It makes up about 3% of the total area of the country and has about 28% of the population.
Victoria has a wealth of attractions for its visitors, such as national parks, wildlife, and wineries. The abundance of mountains and lakes makes it possible to enjoy a multitude of sports. Mountain climbing, water skiing and swimming are possible. Some of the highest mountain peaks in the country are found in Victoria.
The principal river in Australia, the Murray River, forms most of the northern boundary. The northern part of the state is mostly flat plains. The southern region has hills and plains. The most important inlet in Victoria is Port Philip Bay and this is where Melbourne is located.
Victoria features a range of climates. In the south, it has a mostly temperate marine climate with temperatures averaging about 65° in summer and 50° in winter. The northern part of the state is usually warmer and drier. The annual precipitation on the eastern mountain slopes is less more than 60 inches, but in the extreme northwest it is less than 12 inches.
Melbourne is the main industrial region with factories producing vehicles, machinery, clothing chemicals, foods and wood products. Farming is very important in Victoria, with wheat being the most important crop. About half of the irrigated farmland in the country is in the Murray basin of Victoria. Grazing sheep and dairy cattle are common sights as are fields of fruits and vegetables.
The transportation system in Victoria consists of railways and paved roads. All the rails and roads lead to Melbourne, which is the site of an international airport and an international seaport. Besides Melbourne, other important cities include Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo.
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