The Discovery of Australia

  • Aug 8, 1400

    Chinese explorers visit Australia

  • Dutch explorer Willem Jansz came to Australia

    Jansz charted part of Cape York Peninsula in his ship Duyfken (meaning little dove in Dutch). Aborigines killed one of his sailors and Jansz reported that the land was not suitable for settlement.
  • Dirk Hartog lands in Australia

    Hartog landed his ship Eendracht on some small islands off Australia's west coast. He named one of them "Dirk Hartog Island" and erected a pewter plate as a record of his landing.
  • End of Hartog's voyage to Australia

  • Houtman comes to Australia

    Frederick de Houtman explores the west coast of Australia.
  • Abel Tasman discovers Tasmania and New Zealand.

    Van Diemen's Land is now changed to Tasmania after Abel Tasman's discovery.
  • Captain Cook sights the south-east corner of Australia.

    Captain James Cook sights the south-east corner when returning from Tahiti after a scientific expedition there. He explored and mapped the east coast in his ship Endeavour.
  • George Bass and Matthew Flinders discovered Bass Strait

    Bass and Flinders discovered a strait which was then named after Bass. They also realized that Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) was an island, not joined to Australia.
  • Start of Flinders' circumnavigation expedition.

    Flinders starts his circumnavigation expedition in his boat Investigator. The trip started in 1801 and ended in 1803.
  • End of Flinders' circumnavigation expedition.