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The Earth is divided into seven continents. These include Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Europe, Australia, and Antarctica.
Map of Continents
These seven continents are believed to have once formed the supercontinent Pangaea, a landmass that existed on earth 250 million years ago. Pangaea was surrounded by one ocean, known as Panthalassa. Because of movements of the underlying tectonic plates, the landmass broke up and the continents separated and moved apart, and eventually to the positions they are in now. This process took around one million years to complete.

Continent Facts
ContinentTotal Area (square kilometers)Total landmass percentagePopulation (approx 2008)
North America244900000.165542056000
South America178400000.12392555000
Australia and Oceania90380000.059378000000

The total land area of the all the continents is around 148,647,000 sq km or 29.1% of the total surface of the earth.

Physical Features
The earth's land areas are concentrated in the Northern Hemisphere. The largest continent is Asia which is adjacent to Europe. Sometimes both these are referred as a single continent, Eurasia. The following table gives the details of the highest and lowest points on each of the continents.

The following table gives the details of the highest and lowest points in the continents.
ContinentHighest PointHeight (meters)Lowest PointHeight (meters)
AsiaMount Everest8848Dead Sea-408
EuropeMount Elbrus5633Caspian Sea-28
AfricaMount Kilimanjaro5895Lake Assal-155
North AmericaMount McKinley6198Death Valley-86
South AmericaAconcagua6960Laguna del Carbon-105
AustraliaPuncak Jaya4884Lake Eyre-15
AntarcticaVinson Massif4892Bentley Subglacial Trench-2540

Asia is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Pacific Ocean to the east, the Indian Ocean to the south and the Mediterranean and Europe to the west. On the western part of the Eurasian landmass, Europe borders the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west,
the Mediterranean Sea, the Black Sea, and the Caspian Sea to the south and the Ural Mountains to the east.

The northern boundary of South America faces the Caribbean Sea. The Atlantic Ocean lies to the east, the Pacific Ocean is to the west and the continent of Antarctica is in the far south. North America is the third largest continent on Earth, bounded by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Caribbean Sea to the south. The narrow Isthmus of Panama connects North and South America.

Australia is the smallest continent in the world. Located in the Southern Hemisphere, Australia is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean and the Indian Ocean.

Antarctica is the most remote continent on Earth, located in the South Pole. Antarctica is covered by ice throughout the year, and does not have permanent inhabitants.

Clic here for more information about 7 Continents and 7 Wonders.


Last Updated On : January 22, 2013

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