The earth is home to a variety of landforms, including mountains, valleys, plateaus, and islands.
Islands are a unique type of landform that are surrounded by water on all sides. They come in different shapes and sizes, and are found all over the world.
Some islands are so big that they are considered continents, while others are so small that they are barely visible on a map.
In this article, we will explore the topic of the biggest island on earth.
Table of Contents
An island is a piece of land surrounded by water. It can be located in an ocean, sea, river, or lake.
Islands can vary in size, from small islets to large landmasses like Greenland, which is the largest island on earth.
Islands can form in different ways. Some are the result of volcanic activity, while others are formed by the movement of tectonic plates.
Islands can also be created by the erosion of land, or by the deposition of sediment.
Archipelagos are groups of islands that are located close to each other. They can be found in oceans and seas around the world.
The largest archipelago on earth is Indonesia, which is made up of over 17,000 islands.
Islands are home to a wide variety of plants and animals, many of which are unique to a particular island or group of islands.
Some islands have been inhabited by humans for thousands of years, and have developed their own distinct cultures and ways of life.
It is important to remember that while islands may seem isolated, they are still connected to the larger world through the water that surrounds them.
The health of the oceans and seas is crucial to the survival of the plants, animals, and people that call islands home.
The Largest Island: Greenland
Greenland, the largest island on Earth, is located in the Arctic region and is part of the Arctic Archipelago.
It is situated between the North Atlantic and Arctic oceans and is geographically considered a part of North America.
The island has an area of approximately 2,166,086 square kilometers, making it the largest island in the world.
Greenland is mostly covered by ice, with the Greenland Ice Sheet covering nearly 80% of its land area.
The ice sheet is the second-largest body of ice in the world, after the Antarctic Ice Sheet.
The island’s glaciers are also a significant feature, covering approximately 15% of its land area.
The island has a population of around 56,000 people, most of whom are Inuit.
The Inuit have a long history of living in Greenland and have adapted to the island’s harsh environment.
They have traditionally relied on hunting and fishing for their livelihoods and have developed a unique culture that is closely tied to the natural environment.
Greenland is also home to a diverse range of wildlife, including polar bears, arctic foxes, and various species of whales and seals.
The island’s waters are rich in fish and other marine life, making it an important area for commercial fishing.
Despite its remote location and harsh climate, Greenland has a strategic importance due to its location in the Arctic Circle.
The island has been a point of interest for various nations throughout history, including Denmark, which currently governs the island, and the United States, which has maintained a military presence on the island since 1941.
Continent vs Island: The Australia Debate
Australia is often referred to as the world’s largest island, but is it really an island or a continent?
This question has sparked a debate among geographers and scientists for many years.
Some argue that Australia is a continent because it sits on its own tectonic plate, while others argue that it should be classified as an island because of its size and isolation.
Geographically, Australia is located in Oceania, surrounded by the Indian and Pacific oceans.
It is the sixth-largest country in the world by land area, covering approximately 7.7 million square kilometers.
However, its status as an island or a continent is still a topic of debate.
Those who argue that Australia is a continent point to its unique geological features. The continent sits on its own tectonic plate, which separates it from the rest of Asia.
Additionally, Australia has a diverse range of landscapes, including deserts, mountains, and rainforests, which are not typically found on islands.
On the other hand, those who argue that Australia is an island point to its isolation.
The continent is surrounded by water on all sides and is not connected to any other landmass.
This isolation has led to the evolution of unique flora and fauna, including the famous marsupials like kangaroos and wallabies.
The debate over whether Australia is a continent or an island is not likely to be resolved anytime soon.
However, it is important to note that the classification of Australia as an island or a continent does not change its significance.
Regardless of its classification, Australia remains a unique and important part of the world’s geography and biodiversity.
Geographical Features and Climate
The Earth is home to numerous islands, each with unique geographical features and climates.
The biggest island on Earth is Greenland, with an area of over 2.16 million square kilometers. Greenland is located in the North Atlantic Ocean and is part of the North American continent.
Greenland’s geographical features include ice caps, glaciers, mountains, and fjords.
The island is covered by an ice sheet that is up to 3 kilometers thick in some places, making it the largest ice sheet in the Northern Hemisphere.
The ice sheet covers about 80% of Greenland’s land area, and is responsible for the island’s unique climate.
Greenland’s climate is characterized by long, cold winters and short, cool summers.
The island’s proximity to the Arctic Circle means that it experiences long periods of darkness during the winter months, and long periods of daylight during the summer months.
The average temperature on the island ranges from -30°C in winter to 10°C in summer.
Despite its harsh climate, Greenland is home to a diverse range of wildlife and flora. The island’s waters are home to a variety of marine life, including whales, seals, and fish.
On land, animals such as musk oxen, reindeer, and arctic foxes can be found. The island’s flora includes mosses, lichens, and a variety of wildflowers.
Greenland’s forests are limited due to its harsh climate and the presence of the ice sheet. However, the island does have some areas of tundra vegetation, which includes low-growing shrubs, grasses, and mosses.
The island’s mountains and volcanoes are also limited, with most of the island’s topography consisting of ice and snow.
Greenland’s unique geographical features and climate make it an important site for biodiversity research.
Scientists are studying the island’s flora and fauna to better understand how they have adapted to the island’s extreme conditions.
Size, Area, and Population
The biggest island on Earth is Greenland, located in the northern part of the Atlantic Ocean.
With an area of approximately 2.16 million square kilometers, it is the world’s largest island by land area.
Greenland is also the 13th largest country in the world, with a land area that is three times the size of Texas.
Despite its massive size, Greenland has a relatively small population of around 56,000 people, making it the least densely populated country in the world.
The majority of the population lives in the capital city of Nuuk, which is also the largest city in Greenland.
Compared to other large countries, Greenland’s population is tiny. For example, the United States has a population of over 328 million people, while Russia has a population of over 144 million people.
Even Canada, which is geographically similar to Greenland, has a population of over 38 million people.
Greenland’s massive size and small population have made it a unique destination for adventurers and explorers.
Its rugged terrain and harsh climate have also made it a challenging place to live for the few people who call it home.
However, despite its challenges, Greenland remains one of the most fascinating and awe-inspiring places on Earth.
Islands and Continents
Islands and continents are two distinct types of landforms on Earth. Continents are large, continuous land masses that are separated from each other by oceans or seas.
There are seven continents on Earth: North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and Antarctica.
Together, these continents make up approximately 29% of the Earth’s surface area.
In contrast, islands are smaller land masses that are surrounded by water.
Islands can be found in oceans, seas, lakes, and rivers, and can be formed by a variety of geological processes such as volcanic eruptions, tectonic plate movements, or erosion.
Islands can be classified into different categories based on their location, size, and geology.
Oceania is the largest group of islands on Earth, encompassing the entire Pacific Ocean.
The largest island in the world is Greenland, which is located in the North Atlantic Ocean and is considered part of the continent of North America.
Other large islands include New Guinea, Borneo, Madagascar, and Sumatra.
Continental landmasses are much larger than islands and are typically home to a greater variety of flora and fauna.
They also have a greater impact on the Earth’s climate, weather patterns, and ocean currents.
For example, the Sahara Desert in Africa and the Himalayan Mountains in Asia both have significant effects on global weather patterns.
The Earth’s surface is covered by around 71% of water, and it contains numerous islands that vary in size, shape, and location.
When it comes to the biggest island on Earth, it depends on how the term “island” is defined.
If we consider the definition of an island as a piece of land surrounded by water, then Australia is the largest island on Earth.
However, if we consider the definition of a continent as a large landmass surrounded by water, then Australia is considered as a continent instead of an island.
Geographically, the biggest island on Earth is Greenland, which is located in the northern hemisphere and is a part of North America.
It is the world’s largest non-continental island, with an area of approximately 2,166,086 square kilometers.
Greenland is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Arctic Ocean to the north, and the Greenland Sea to the west.
It is also located near the North Pole, making it a part of the Arctic region.
Another significant island on Earth is New Guinea, which is located in the southwestern Pacific Ocean.
It is the second-largest island on Earth, with an area of approximately 785,753 square kilometers.
New Guinea is divided into two parts, with the western part belonging to Indonesia and the eastern part belonging to Papua New Guinea.
It is surrounded by the Arafura Sea to the south, the Bismarck Sea to the northeast, and the Solomon Sea to the southeast.
Other notable islands on Earth include Borneo, which is the third-largest island, located in Southeast Asia and shared by three countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, and Brunei.
It is surrounded by the South China Sea to the north and northwest, the Sulu Sea to the northeast, and the Celebes Sea to the east.
Madagascar, which is the fourth-largest island, is located off the east coast of Africa and is surrounded by the Indian Ocean.
Islands and Their Capitals
Islands are fascinating landforms that come in various sizes and shapes.
Some of them are so big that they can house multiple cities, while others are so small that they can barely accommodate a single village.
Regardless of their size, many islands have a capital city that serves as the center of government, commerce, and culture.
The capital city of an island is usually the largest and most important city on the island. It is where the government offices, businesses, and cultural institutions are located.
The capital city is also where most of the island’s population lives. In some cases, the capital city is located on the coast, while in others, it is located inland.
One example of an island with a capital city is Japan. Japan is an archipelago that consists of four main islands and many smaller ones.
The capital city of Japan is Tokyo, which is located on the island of Honshu.
Tokyo is the largest city in Japan and one of the largest cities in the world. It is the center of government, commerce, and culture in Japan.
Another example of an island with a capital city is Iceland. Iceland is a volcanic island located in the North Atlantic Ocean.
The capital city of Iceland is Reykjavik, which is located on the southwestern coast of the island.
Reykjavik is the largest city in Iceland and the center of government, commerce, and culture.
In some cases, an island may have multiple capital cities. For example, Cyprus, an island located in the eastern Mediterranean, has three capital cities: Nicosia, Limassol, and Larnaca. Each of these cities serves a different purpose and has its own unique character.
Islands in the Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia is a region that comprises a group of countries located between the Indian and Pacific Oceans.
The region is known for its vast archipelagos that consist of thousands of islands.
The largest archipelago in the world, the Malay Archipelago, is located in Southeast Asia and is composed of more than 25,000 islands.
Indonesia is the largest archipelagic country in the world, with over 17,000 islands. The country is located in Southeast Asia and Oceania, and it is home to some of the world’s largest islands, including Java, Sumatra, Borneo, and Papua.
The country’s geography and climate have made it a biodiversity hotspot, with a vast array of flora and fauna found nowhere else on earth.
Malaysia is another Southeast Asian country that is home to several islands, including the famous Langkawi archipelago.
The archipelago is located in the Andaman Sea and is composed of 99 islands, with the largest being Pulau Langkawi.
The islands are known for their stunning natural beauty, with pristine beaches and crystal-clear waters that attract tourists from all over the world.
The Philippines is an archipelagic country located in the western Pacific Ocean.
The country is composed of more than 7,000 islands, with the largest being Luzon, Mindanao, and Samar.
The islands are known for their natural beauty, with stunning beaches, coral reefs, and lush rainforests.
Brunei is a small country located on the island of Borneo in Southeast Asia.
The country is composed of two main parts, with the largest part being the mainland, and the other part being a cluster of islands.
The country’s largest island is Pulau Muara Besar, which is located in Brunei Bay and is home to a large industrial park.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the largest island on Earth?
The largest island on Earth is Greenland, which is located between the Arctic and Atlantic oceans. It covers an area of approximately 836,330 square miles (2,166,086 square kilometers).
What are the top 5 largest islands in the world?
The top 5 largest islands in the world are:
- Greenland – 836,330 square miles (2,166,086 square kilometers)
- New Guinea – 303,381 square miles (785,753 square kilometers)
- Borneo – 288,869 square miles (748,168 square kilometers)
- Madagascar – 226,917 square miles (587,713 square kilometers)
- Baffin Island – 195,928 square miles (507,451 square kilometers)
What is the smallest island in the world?
The smallest island in the world is Bishop Rock, which is located off the coast of the Isles of Scilly in the United Kingdom. It covers an area of just 0.008 square miles (0.02 square kilometers).
Which country has the most islands?
Indonesia has the most islands of any country in the world, with over 17,000 islands within its borders.
What is the largest river island in the world?
Majuli Island, located in the Brahmaputra River in India, is considered the largest river island in the world. It covers an area of approximately 136 square miles (352 square kilometers).
Is Australia considered an island or a continent?
Australia is considered both an island and a continent. It is the world’s largest island and smallest continent, covering an area of approximately 2.97 million square miles (7.68 million square kilometers).