Christmas Island is a dot in the Indian Ocean 2,600 kilometres north west of Perth. The cultural background is diverse, with settlers having come from Malaysian, Chinese, Indonesian and European backgrounds. The society works as a harmonious blend of cultures, accepting and inclusive of each other’s beliefs and practices.
The island is the peak of a submarine mountain, its 80 kilometre coastline of mostly sheer cliff broken by occasional small bays or inlets. 63 per cent of the island is comprised of national park, populated by many species unique to the island.
This tiny horseshoe shaped island is 2750 kilometres north west of Perth and 900 kilometres south west of Christmas Island. Cocos Island also represents a melding of the cultural backgrounds of the settlers arriving on the island from all points of the globe. However the culture and religion practised here is predominantly Muslim and the prevalent language is a dialect of Malaysian called Cocos-Malay.
The island comprises two coral atolls and is home to a stunning diversity of bird and marine life.
The climate in this region is equatorial, with temperatures reaching a maximum of around 28 degrees celsius year round, but high rainfall in the wet season of December to April and prone to occasional cyclonic activity.