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Countries of the Americas


Gran Sabana, the Great Plain is part of the Canaima National Park in Venezuela
View of the Gran Sabana, the Great Savanna is part of the Canaima National Park in southeastern Venezuela.
Image: Inti


America

Conventionally there are four main geographical regions or subregions in the Americas.

North America The Caribbean Central AmericaSouth America

 

Some Facts about the Americas



Strictly speaking, the Americas consists of two continents, North America and South America. Central America and the Caribbean are considered part of North America.

The double continent is situated entirely in the Western Hemisphere bounded by the Pacific Ocean in the west, the Atlantic Ocean in the east, the Arctic Ocean in the north, and the Southern Ocean in the south.
Measured from the northernmost point of Greenland to the southernmost point of South America, it is 15,600 km as the crow flies, making America the most elongated landmass in the world.


Area
With an area of 42.55 million km² (16,428,000 sq mi), the Americas cover 8.3 percent of Earth's surface area and 28.5 percent of its total land area.

The largest country by area is the United States with 9,833,517 km², followed by Brazil with 8,515,770 km².
The smallest independent country in the Americas is the island nation of Saint Kitts and Nevis with 261 km².


How many countries are there in the Americas?
America is shared by 35 countries (sovereign states) and several dependent territories (see the list below).




 
Country
Pop.
(1000)
Maps
Capital/
Largest city

North America

View of the Milky Way over Echo Lake in Colorado
View of the Milky Way over Echo Lake in Colorado.
Image: Max and Dee Bernt
 
North America or Northern America is the northern landmass of the Americas. The third largest continent on Earth covers an area of 24.7 million km² (9.5 million sq mi) and is situated in Earth's western hemisphere. The United Nations geoscheme defines "North America" as consisting of three regions: Northern America, Central America, and the Caribbean.

The term Northern America refers to the northern portion of the continent. It includes the world's largest island Greenland and the sovereign states of Canada, the United States, and Mexico.

About 498 million people live in Northern America (in 2019.)

Countries of  Northern America
Canada 37,411 Map of Canada Ottawa - Toronto
Greenland (DK) 57 Map of Greenland Nuuk (Godthab)
Mexico 132,328 Map of Mexico Mexico (City)
USA 329,065 United States Map Washington - New York

The Caribbean

Petit Tabac an island in St Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean
Petit Tabac an island in St Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean.
Image: _dChris
 
The Caribbean, sometimes also referred to as the West Indies, are the islands and archipelagos in the Caribbean Sea southeast of the United States and north of South America. The Caribbean region borders the Gulf of Mexico in the west, the Florida Straits in the north and the Northern Atlantic Ocean in the east. The largest islands in the Caribbean are Cuba, Hispaniola, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, and Trinidad.

In 2019 an estimated 44 million people live in the Caribbean.
 
Anguilla (UK) 15   The Valley
Antigua and Barbuda 104   Saint John's
Aruba (NL) 106   Oranjestad
Bahamas 403 Bahamas Map Nassau
Barbados 287   Bridgetown
Bermuda (UK) 61 Bermuda Map Hamilton
British Virgin Islands (UK) 32   Road Town
Cayman Islands (UK) 63   George Town
Cuba 11,492 Cuba Map Havana
Curaçao (NL) 163   Willemstad
Dominica 75   Roseau
Dominican Republic 10,997 Dominican Rep. Map Santo Domingo
Grenada 109   Saint George's
Guadeloupe (FR) 449   Basse-Terre
Haiti 11,243 Haiti Map Port-au-Prince
Jamaica 2,906 Jamaica Map Kingston
Martinique (FR) 385   Fort-de-France
Montserrat (UK) 5   Plymouth
Puerto Rico (USA) 3,655 Puerto Rico Map San Juan
Saint Kitts and Nevis 56   Basseterre
Saint Lucia 180   Castries
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 110   Kingstown
Trinidad and Tobago 1,375   Port-of-Spain
US Virgin Islands (USA) 105 U.S. Virgin Is. Map Charlotte Amalie
 

Central America

Great Plaza of the Tikal Temple in Guatemala.
The Great Plaza of the Tikal Temple in Guatemala; it is one of the largest cities and archaeological sites of the pre-Columbian Maya civilization.
Image: Daniel Mennerich
 
The term Central America refers to the land bridge between the continents of North and South America; it borders the Pacific Ocean in the southwest and the Caribbean Sea in the northeast.
There are seven countries in Central America namely Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama.
In 2019 an estimated 182 million people live in Central Americas.
 
Belize 390 Map of Belize Belmopan
Costa Rica 4,999 Map of Costa Rica San José
El Salvador 6,445 Map of El Salvador San Salvador
Guatemala 17,578 Map of Guatemala Guatemala (City)
Honduras 9,569 Map of Honduras Tegucigalpa
Nicaragua 6,351 Map of Nicaragua Managua
Panama 4,226 Map of Panama Panama (City)
 

South America

Salvador Dalí Desert in Bolivia
The Salvador Dalí Desert is a barren valley west of the Andes in southwestern Bolivia.
Image: Diego Delso
 
South America is the southern continent of the Americas and situated in the Western Hemisphere. The fourth-largest continent is mostly south of the equator. South America borders the Pacific Ocean in the west, the Caribbean Sea in the northwest, the Atlantic Ocean in the north and east and the Southern Ocean in the south. The continent is connected to North America by a narrow strip of land known as the Isthmus of Panama.

South America's mainland is shared by twelve sovereign states and one overseas department of France (French Guiana.)

In 2019 an estimated 432 million people live in South America.
 
Argentina 45,102 Map of Argentina Buenos Aires
Bolivia 11,380 Map of Bolivia La Paz, Sucre
Brazil 212,393 Map of Brazil Brasilia - São Paulo
Chile 18,337 Map of Chile Santiago
Colombia 49,850 Map of Colombia Bogotá D.C.
Ecuador 17,100 Map of Ecuador Quito
French Guiana (FR) 297 French Guiana Map Cayenne
Guyana 787 Map of Guyana Georgetown
Paraguay 6,982 Map of Paraguay Asunción
Peru 32,934 Map of Peru Lima
Suriname 573 Map of Suriname Paramaribo
Uruguay 3,482 Map of Uruguay Montevideo
Venezuela 32,780 Map of Venezuela Caracas
 

Population source: population.un.org/wup/


Population
An estimated 998 million people live in the Americas; [1] about 13% of the world's population.
The most populous countries in America are the USA with 329 million people and Brazil with 212 million (in 2019).
(Source: UN World Population Prospects 2019)

Largest Metropolitan Areas
The largest cities in the Americas are:
São Paulo, Mexico City, New York, Buenos Aires, Los Angeles.

Highest Point:
Aconcagua  is the highest mountain in the Americas
Aconcagua in the Andes mountain range is the highest mountain in the Americas at 6,960.8 m (22,837 ft).
Image: Roberto Castillo
 
Aconcagua in Argentina is at 6,960.8 m (22,837 ft) the highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere.
Denali (also known as Mount McKinley) at 6,168 m (20,239 ft) in Alaska is the highest mountain in North America.

Largest Lake:
The largest lake in the Americas is Lake Superior. It is the largest of the Great Lakes and is shared by Canada and the US. With a surface area of 82,000 km² (32,000 sq mi), it is also the largest freshwater lake in the world.

Longest River:
The longest river in America is the Rio Amazonas (Amazon river) with a length of "at least" 6,400 km (4,000 mi). The source of the Amazon lies in the Peruvian part of the Andes mountain range.

There is much discussion about the longest river in North America, as the name of the "main river" varies.
Anyhow, the Missouri is the longest river in North America with a length of 4.087 km (2,540 mi); it rises in the Rocky Mountains of western Montana.
The Mississippi River is the second-longest river in North America with 3.766 km (2,340 mi), its source is at Lake Itasca in Minnesota, USA. [2]


Major Geographical Features of the Americas
Major physiographic regions of the Americas.

Major Subregions
North America, South America, Central America, and the Caribbean.

Mountains
The Pacific Coast Ranges, the Rocky Mountains, and the Andes are all part of the American Cordilleran mountain system, a series of mountain ranges stretching through North America, South America, and West Antarctica.

Shields and Plateaus
North America
Allegheny Plateau, the Appalachian Highlands and the Appalachian Plateau, the Intermontane Plateaus with the Colorado Plateau and the Columbia Plateau, the Coteau des Prairies, the Missouri Plateau, the Ozarks, and the Yukon Plateau.

South America
Major plateaus are the Altiplano (High Plateau) and the Atacama Plateau, the Brazilian Highlands and the Mato Grosso Plateau, the Guiana Shield and the Guiana Highlands, the Pakaraima with Mount Roraima.

Lowlands
There are several major lowlands in the Americas, as the Atlantic coastal plain along the East Coast of the United States and the Great Plains located in the US and Canada. South American lowlands are the vast Amazon basin; the Pampas, fertile plains shared by Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay; the Gran Sabana, an enormous savanna region in Venezuela, and Los Llanos, an extensive tropical grassland plain in Colombia and Venezuela.

Deserts
The Atacama Desert in Chile and Peru is one of the driest places in the world. The Patagonian Desert is the largest desert in the Americas, whereas the Great Basin is one of the largest deserts in North America. The Chihuahuan Desert extends over a large area of northern Mexico and the southern part of the USA.

Lakes
Superior, Huron, and Michigan are three of the Great Lakes of North America; they are among the largest freshwater lakes on Earth. With a surface area of 8,372 km², Lake Titicaca is the largest lake in South America.

Islands
The largest islands in the Americas are Greenland, Baffin Island, Victoria Island, Ellesmere Island, Newfoundland, Cuba, and Hispaniola.

 Languages of Americas:
Thousands of languages were spoken in the Americas before the arrival of the Europeans. The major languages spoken today in the Americas are based on Spanish, English, Portuguese, some French and French-based creole, and a few Amerindian languages.


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More about the Americas

Maps
 Map of Central America and the Caribbean
Reference Map of Central America and the Caribbean. 
 Political Map of North America
Reference Map of North America.
 Relief Map of North America
Physical Map of North America.
 Map of South America
Reference map of South America.
 Map of the United States
Map of continental USA.
 Maps of the U.S. States
Index of Reference Maps of the 50 U.S. States.

Searchable Maps of Countries and Capital Cities of the Americas

Flags
 Flags of the Americas and the Caribbean
 Flags of the 50 U.S. States
 

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