Coordinates: 23°0′S 143°0′E / 23°S 143°E / -23; 143 Queensland (abbreviated as Qld) is the second-largest and third-most populous state in Australia. Situated in the northeast of the country, it is bordered by the Northern Territory, South Australia and New South Wales to the west, southwest and south respectively. To the east, Queensland is bordered by the Coral Sea and Pacific Ocean. Queensland has a population of 4,580,700, concentrated along the coast and particularly in the state's South East. The state is the world's sixth largest subnational entity, with an area of 1,852,642 km2. The capital and largest city in the state is Brisbane, Australia's third largest city. Referred to as the 'Sunshine State', Queensland is home to 10 of Australia's 30 largest cities and is the nation's third largest economy.
Queensland was first occupied by Indigenous Australians and Torres Strait Islanders, who arrived at least 40,000 years ago. The first European to land in Queensland was Dutch navigator Willem Janszoon in 1607. In 1770, Lieutenant James Cook claimed the east coast of Australia for the Kingdom of Great Britain. The colony of New South Wales was founded in 1788 by Governor Arthur Phillip at Sydney; New South Wales at that time included all of what is now Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania. Queensland was explored in subsequent decades until the establishment of a penal colony at Brisbane in 1824 by John Oxley. Penal transportation ceased in 1839 and free settlement permitted in 1842. Queensland was separated from New South Wales, forming a self-governing colony, on 6 June 1859, a date now celebrated state-wide as Queensland Day. Queensland achieved statehood with the Federation of Australia on 1 January 1901.
Queensland's Governor is Penelope Wensley, and the Premier is Campbell Newman of the Liberal National Party of Queensland. The state was named in honour of Queen Victoria, who on 6 June 1859 signed Letters Patent separating the colony from New South Wales. Queen Victoria, who went on to become Britain's longest reigning monarch, chose an eponymous name for the colony over Cooksland, which had been suggested by the influential local Presbyterian minister John Dunmore Lang in honour of navigator James Cook.