North America

Map of North America with country flags

North America is a continent in the northern and western hemispheres. It’s the third-largest continent in the world (after Asia and Africa) and measures over 24.7 million km² (9.5 million square miles). There are 23 countries in North America, the largest of which are the United States and Canada

The Arctic Ocean borders it to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Caribbean Sea to the southeast, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south. South America lies to the southeast and is connected to North America via a narrow bridge called the Isthmus of Panama in Panama. This is also what separates the Pacific Ocean from the Atlantic Ocean. 

When combined, the subregions of Northern America, the Caribbean and Central America form North America according to the UN geoscheme. While many people mean the United States, Canada, and Mexico when they talk about North American countries, the term can also be used to describe countries in Central America (such as Belize, Costa Rica, and El Salvador). This region is a subregion of the Americas and is officially considered part of North America.

Most of North America has a mild continental climate, with hot summers and cold winters. However, due to the size of the continent, the climate varies dramatically from region to region. The climate in southern US states such as Florida and Louisiana is humid and subtropical, while Alaska, central and northern Canada have subarctic and Arctic climates. 

Some of the most famous landmarks in North America include the Statue of Liberty in the US, the CN Tower in Toronto, and Chichen Itza in Mexico. Popular natural landmarks include Niagara Falls in both the US and Canada and the Grand Canyon in Arizona, US. 

English is the most widely spoken language on the continent. It’s predominately spoken in the US, Canada, Bermuda, Belize, and the Cayman Islands. Spanish is largely spoken in Mexico and most Central American countries (bar Belize), as well as the US. French is the third most popular language in North America and is one of Canada’s two official languages. 

Countries of North America

CountryFlagPopulationWorld %UN SubregionCapital City
Antigua and Barbuda
Flag of Antigua and Barbuda
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Bahamas
Flag of The Bahamas
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Barbados
Flag of Barbados
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Belize
Flag of Belize
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Canada
Flag of Canada
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Costa Rica
Flag of Costa Rica
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Cuba
Flag of Cuba
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Dominica
Flag of Dominica
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Dominican Republic
Flag of Dominican Republic
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El Salvador
Flag of El Salvador
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Grenada
Flag of Grenada
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Guatemala
Flag of Guatemala
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Haiti
Flag of Haiti
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Honduras
Flag of Honduras
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Jamaica
Flag of Jamaica
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Mexico
Flag of Mexico
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Nicaragua
Flag of Nicaragua
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Panama
Flag of Panama
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Saint Kitts and Nevis
Flag of Saint Kitts and Nevis
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Saint Lucia
Flag of Saint Lucia
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Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Flag of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
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Trinidad and Tobago
Flag of Trinidad and Tobago
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United States
Flag of United States
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Facts about North America

Sovereign CountriesPopulationLand Area (km²)Population Density (/km²)World %
North America23604,182,52021,330,000287.51%

Largest Country

The largest country in North America is Canada, which covers a total area of 9,984,670 km² (3,855,103 square miles).
 

Smallest Country

The smallest country in North America is Saint Kitts and Nevis, which covers a land area of just 261 km² (101 sq mi). 

Largest Island

The smallest island in North America is Greenland, an autonomous territory of Denmark. It has a land area of 2,130,800 km² (822,706 sq mi). Baffin Island, in the Canadian territory of Nunavut, is the second-largest island in North America and has a land area of 507,451 km² (195,928 sq mi). 
 

Longest River

North America’s longest river is the Mississippi River system, which is also the fourth-longest river in the world. The river system (the Mississippi, Missouri, and Jefferson Rivers) measures 6,270 kilometers (3,896 mi), although the Mississippi River is just 3,766 kilometers long. 
 

Highest Point

The highest point in North America is Denali, a mountain in Alaska, which stands 6,190 meters (20,310 ft) tall. Denali is also the world’s tallest mountain on land when measured from base to peak. 
 

Largest Lake

North America’s largest lake is Lake Superior, which stretches from Michigan in the United States to Ontario in Canada. The lake’s total length is 560 kilometers (350 mi), and its total area is 82,100 km² (31,700 sq mi). The volume of Lake Superior is 12,070 km³ (2,900 cu mi), and the maximum depth is 406 meters (1,332 ft). 
 

Country with the Longest Coastline

Canada has the longest coastline in North America and the world. It measures 202,080 kilometers (125,567 mi), which includes the mainland coast and coasts of offshore islands. 
 

Tallest Building

North America’s tallest building is the One World Trade Center in New York City, United States. It measures 541 meters (1,776 ft) and has 94 floors. 
 

Most Visited Country

In 2022, the most visited country in North America was the US, which had over 50.8 million visitors. In the same year, Mexico was the second-most visited country with 38.3 million visitors, while Canada came in third place with 12.8 million visitors. 

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