The 7 Continents Ranked By Size

The 7 Continents Ranked By Size

From the vast expanses of Asia to the remote icy landscapes of Antarctica, discover how our world's continents measure up in terms of land area.

1/7 Asia


Asia is the largest and most populous continent on the Earth. It is also the most diverse continent, with a wide range of cultures, languages, and religions. Spanning nearly 44.6 million square kilometers, Asia covers around 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area and 29.5% of the total land area. It is the second-largest continent after Africa. Asia is home to some of the world's most populous countries, including China, India, Indonesia, and Japan. It is also home to the world's largest population, with around 4.6 billion people, representing over 60% of the world's population. The continent is divided into several regions, including East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, and West Asia. East Asia is the most populous region and includes China, Japan, and Korea. South Asia includes India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. Southeast Asia includes Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines. Central Asia includes Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. West Asia includes the Middle East, such as Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. Asia is also home to some of the world's most iconic landmarks, such as the Great Wall of China, and the Taj Mahal. The continent is also home to some of the world's most impressive mountain ranges, such as the Himalayas, the Karakoram, and the Hindu Kush. Asia is also home to some of the world's longest rivers, such as the Yangtze and the Ganges. Asia is also home to some of the world's most extreme climates, from the subarctic tundra of Siberia to the scorching deserts of the Middle East. The continent is also home to some of the world's most spectacular wildlife, such as the Bengal tiger, the Komodo dragon, and the giant panda.

2/7 Africa


Africa is the second largest continent in the world and covers about 30.2 million km2 (11.7 million sq mi). It covers 6% of the total surface area of the Earth and 20.4% of the total land area. With an estimated population of over 1.2 billion people, Africa is the second most populous continent, after Asia. Africa is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, the Red Sea to the northeast, the Indian Ocean to the southeast, and the Atlantic Ocean to the west. Its northernmost point is Ras ben Sakka in Tunisia, and its southernmost point is Cape Agulhas in South Africa. Africa is divided into a number of regions, including the Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western regions. It is also divided into 54 sovereign countries and seven other territories. Its largest country is Algeria, while its smallest is the Seychelles. Africa is home to a diverse range of landscapes, wildlife, and cultures. It has some of the world’s oldest landscapes, some of its harshest deserts, as well as lush rainforests, grasslands, and wetlands. Its varied wildlife includes lions, elephants, giraffes, cheetahs, and gorillas.

3/7 North America

North America

North America is the third-largest continent in the world, covering an area of 24,230,000 square kilometers. It is the fourth most populous continent, with a population of 579 million people. North America is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Pacific Ocean to the west, and the Caribbean Sea and Central America to the south. North America is a large continent, with a total land area of 9,540,000 square miles or 24,230,000 square kilometers. The continent is composed of 23 countries and several overseas territories. The countries of North America are the United States, Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Cuba, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Puerto Rico, and the Bahamas. The continent of North America is divided into three regions: the United States and Canada in the north, and Central America and the Caribbean in the south. The United States and Canada together form the largest landmass in North America. These two countries are both highly developed and advanced in terms of technology and infrastructure. Central America and the Caribbean are generally less developed than the US and Canada. These countries are mostly comprised of tropical islands and have a much smaller population. The Caribbean region is made up of many small island nations, each with its own unique culture and history. North America is home to some of the world’s most iconic landmarks and natural wonders, including the Grand Canyon, Niagara Falls, the Rocky Mountains, and the Great Lakes. It is also home to a wide variety of wildlife, from grizzly bears to whales. North America is a large and diverse continent, with a rich and vibrant culture. 

4/7 South America

South America

South America is the fourth largest continent in the world and the fifth most populous continent on Earth. It is located in the Western Hemisphere, in the southern region of the Americas. It occupies an area of 17,840,000 square kilometers and its population is around 422 million people. South America is divided into 12 independent countries and three dependent territories. The countries are Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Its dependent territories are the Falkland Islands, French Guiana, and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands. South America's physical geography is dominated by the Andes mountain range that runs along the entire western coast of the continent. The continent also has several large rivers, including the Amazon, the Orinoco, the Paraná and the Paraguay. South America's climate is tropical in the north, temperate in the south, and arid or semi-arid in the interior. South America is home to a variety of flora and fauna, including many species of mammals, reptiles, birds, and insects. The Amazon rainforest is the largest rainforest in the world and is home to an incredible variety of plant and animal species. South America has a long and rich history, beginning with the arrival of early humans in the region more than 11,000 years ago. The continent was home to a number of indigenous cultures before the arrival of Europeans in the 15th century. 

5/7 Antarctica


Antarctica is the fifth largest continent in the world, and the most southern, located almost entirely within the Antarctic Circle. It is the only continent on Earth that is completely surrounded by ocean. Antarctica is covered by an ice sheet that averages 1.6 kilometers (1 mile) in thickness and is the highest, driest, coldest, windiest, and most inhospitable continent on the Earth. The total area of Antarctica is estimated at 14 million square kilometres (5.4 million square miles), including its islands and the waters it contains. Its land mass is roughly twice the size of Australia, making it the fifth largest continent. Antarctica is also the most remote and isolated continent on the planet, being almost 7,000 kilometres (4,300 miles) from the nearest landmass. The majority of Antarctica is covered by the Antarctic ice sheet, which is estimated to contain about 90 percent of the world's fresh water. The average thickness of the ice sheet is 1.6 kilometres (1 mile), with the highest point being 4,776 metres (15,694 ft) above sea level at Vinson Massif. The ice sheet covers an area of 14 million square kilometres (5.4 million square miles). The continent is largely uninhabited, with only a few thousand research personnel living there during the summer months. Most of the continent is classified as a desert, with average temperatures ranging from -20°C (-4°F) to -80°C (-112°F). The climate of the continent is extremely harsh, and the winds can reach speeds of up to 320 kilometres per hour (200 mph). In addition to the ice sheet, Antarctica is also home to numerous glaciers, mountains, valleys, and rivers. The Antarctic Peninsula is the most biologically active region of the continent, with a wide variety of cold-adapted plants, birds, and mammals.

6/7 Europe


Europe is the second smallest continent in the world, covering just over 10 million square kilometers. It is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, and the Black Sea, the Caucasus Mountains and the Ural Mountains to the east. Europe is divided into four major geographical regions: the British Isles, the Iberian Peninsula, Scandinavia, and the Balkans. The British Isles include the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Iceland. The Iberian Peninsula includes Spain, Portugal, and Andorra. Scandinavia includes Norway, Sweden, and Finland. The Balkans includes Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, and Turkey. The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of 28 countries that are located primarily in Europe. It is also the wealthiest continent, with a combined GDP of $18.7 trillion in 2020. Europe is home to some of the world’s most famous cities, including London, Paris, Rome, Berlin, Madrid, and Amsterdam. It also has many world-class cultural and historical sites, such as the Acropolis of Athens, the Grand Canal of Venice, Stonehenge, and the Colosseum of Rome. Europe is a diverse continent, with a variety of climates and landscapes. The northernmost part of the continent is the Arctic tundra, while the southernmost part is the Mediterranean climate. In between, there are mountains, plains, and forests. 

7/7 Australia


Australia is the world’s smallest (or the seventh largest) continent, covering an area of 8.6 million square kilometers. It is the smallest of all the continents, but it is still larger than the country of India. The continent of Australia includes mainland Australia, Tasmania, the Aru Islands, the island of New Guinea, the Ashmore and Cartier Islands, several Coral Sea Islands, and some other nearby islands. The mainland Australia is surrounded by the Indian and Pacific oceans. Australia is situated in the Southern Hemisphere, between the Indian and Pacific oceans, and the Tasman Sea. It is located south of Indonesia and Papua New Guinea, east of East Timor and the Solomon Islands, north of New Zealand, and west of the Pacific Ocean. Australia is considered a continent rather than an island because it shares a continental shelf with the neighboring countries. The Australian continent has a wide range of climates, ranging from tropical in the north to temperate in the south. 

More Like This