- Dili; 49,000
- 14,609 square kilometers (5,640 square miles)
- Tetum, Portuguese, Bahasa Indonesia, English
- Christian (mostly Roman Catholic)
- U.S. dollar
- Life Expectancy:
- GDP per Capita:
- U.S. $500
- Literacy Percent:
Timor-Leste (East Timor) Facts Flag
The first new nation of the 21st century is located in Southeast Asia, just north of Australia. A Portuguese colony from the 17th century until 1975, Timor-Leste (the Portuguese name for East Timor) shares the island of Timor with Indonesia. When the Portuguese left in 1975, Indonesia invaded and annexed East Timor. The United Nations condemned Indonesia's occupation, and in 1999 a UN-organized referendum showed that most East Timorese wanted independence. Militias caused damage after the vote, but the UN guided East Timor to independence on May 20, 2002. The new country is the poorest in Asia, but oil in the Timor Sea promises future revenue.
- Industry: Printing, soap manufacturing, handicrafts, woven cloth
- Agriculture: Coffee, rice, maize, cassava
- Exports: Coffee, sandalwood, marble
—Text From National Geographic Atlas of the World, Eighth Edition
For New Guinea's birds of paradise, attracting a mate is a performing art.
New Zealand marine reserves are a model for the world.
Scattered about the world's largest ocean, the legendary islands of the South Pacific are a wonder to travelers, full of beautiful sights and fascinating cultures.
Travel Photos From Your Shot
Browse Stunning Images of These Natural Marvels
Shop National Geographic
Special Ad Section
Watch as Nat Geo photographers reveal what drives them to create iconic images.