Melbourne is the capital city of Victoria, and the second largest city in Australia. Melbourne has a large population of approximately 3 million people. Melbourne is a very busy and densely populated city. Even though Victoria is Australia's smallest state it is very crowded as about one-quarter of Australia's entire population live there.
Melbourne is a very diverse, multicultural and cosmopolitan flavoured city. In fact, Melbourne is considered to be the most multicultural state in Australia and it is a "melting pot" made up of over 60 different nationalities.
In Melbourne, there is a great diversity and noticeable contrasts amongst the people in ternis of nationalities, ethnieity's, religions, cultures, languages, occupations, wealth, political/social views, sporting/entertainment preferences and general lifestyles.
Melbourne's population is predominately white and mainly made up of Anglo-Saxons and
Europeans, followed by Asians, Middle Easterns, Aborigines and other nationalities. About
40 percent of the population are migrants or the descendants of migrants. This is due to the
high rate of immigration intakes over the last 50 years.
The Aborigines were the original inhabitants to live in Australia. It is believed that they were originally from South East Asia and that they lived in Australia for approximately 50,000 years before white man arrived. The aborigines lived in tribal groups and had their own languages, arts/crafts, traditions, cultures and religious beliefs. Basically they lived a very spiritual way of life with strong ties to the "land" and nature. Unfortunately the aboriginal population dramatically decreased when the British arrived and gained sovereignty over Australia. This is because the aborigine's lifestyle was severely disrupted as many Aborigines were killed, forced to move from their homes, and died of other causes (e.g. introduced diseases, alcohol, poor nutrition etc). Today the aborigines are a minority group and make up only a very small percentage of Australia's population.
In the late I 700s, the British settled in Australia and established colonies of convicts in New South Wales and Tasmania. Later people, other than prisoners known as "free settlers", migrated to Australia from the British Isles (England, Ireland, and Scotland). Consequently, Britain has had an incredibly strong influence in dominating and shaping Australia's history and society. For instance, Australia has adopted British customs, laws, traditions, architecture, food, institutions and the English language.