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  • The geography of South America is pretty strange.

  • It's home to 14 countries, including the very famous South American countries of the Netherlands and France.

  • But wait, hang on those countries air in Europe.

  • Alas, that might largely be true.

  • But do tell me which country just France share her longest border with.

  • You probably want to say something like Germany or Belgium or perhaps even Spain.

  • But if you measure them all up, the answer that you're going to end up getting is delightfully Brazil.

  • You see, there's a chunk of France in South America that's marked on maps as French Guiana, but it's not an independent country.

  • It's literally 100% fully part of France and the European Union, the same way that Alaska is part of the United States.

  • So because of this goofy little geographic quirk, the largest national park in the European Union is actually not located anywhere in Europe, but in South America.

  • Inside of French Guyana, the Guyana Amazonian park, right next door to France.

  • Here is surname, and despite surname and Brazil sharing a fairly long border between them, there isn't a single road that connects them together, meaning that right now the only way free to drive from Brazil into surname or vice versa is either drive through Guyana first or France.

  • And speaking of Brazil, it's important for me to show you exactly how huge a country Brazil actually is.

  • This is the northernmost point of Brazil, and this down here is the southernmost point of Brazil.

  • How many other countries do you think the northernmost point is closer to than it is to the southernmost point?

  • Obviously, places like Venezuela, Guyana and the now not so unexpected France.

  • But if you measure all of the distances out in straight great circle lines, you'll find that the northernmost point is closer to Colombia, Argentina, Ecuador, Mexico and even the United States than it is to Brazil southernmost point.

  • But it can't be closer to Canada to can.

  • It's well, if you measured out again, you'll actually see that Yep, most unexpectedly, Brazil's northernmost point is even closer to Canada to than it is to Brazil's southernmost point, Brazil's northernmost point, is in fact closer to every single other country in the Americas than it is to Brazil's southernmost Point affect.

  • That defies most appeals to common sense.

  • But even more shocking than that is this.

  • What geographic location do you believe is closer to Brazil, Miami or Africa?

  • Starting again at the same northernmost point of Brazil?

  • The straight shot distance over to Miami is 2898 kilometers, as the crow flies.

  • But Brazil's easternmost point over here is only 2883 kilometers away from Sierra Leone across the mid Atlantic, which means that Brazil is located a very narrow 15 kilometers closer to Africa than it is to Miami, meaning that you can factually say that Miami is further away from Brazil than Africa.

  • The biggest reason for why this may come as a surprise to you is because most of us in the Northern Hemisphere have a weird misunderstanding of where exactly, South America is located.

  • Geographically, we all know that South America is, of course, south of North America, but it's easy to forget or simply not know that South America isn't directly south of North America.

  • If you're in the United States and look south and you draw a straight line down from your gaze, it's unlikely that that line will ever actually hit South America.

  • This is because if you start in Jacksonville, Florida, and draw lines straight down across the globe, you'll discover that the entire South American continent lies just to the east of this line.

  • South America is so far East that the entire continent is significantly east of Detroit and therefore most of the United States.

  • South America is much further east than most of us believe it to be in our heads.

  • And because of that, there's some other interesting geographic implications.

  • Despite not being strictly located in South America, the Panama Canal is close.

  • Enoughto warrants a mention here.

  • The canal enables ships to travel between the Western Pacific Ocean and the eastern Atlantic Ocean quickly without having to sail all the way around South America.

  • But if you zoom in closer to the canal itself, you discover that ships travel through it in a rather unexpected direction.

  • If you're starting in the eastern Atlantic Ocean and you're going across the canal to the Western Pacific Ocean.

  • You actually begin in the north and generally travel southeast to reach the Pacific.

  • To further complicate your confusion, the Atlantic side of the canal is actually further to the West.

  • In the Pacific side is which means that to travel from the Atlantic to the Pacific, you actually end up traveling east.

  • South America is so far southeast that it's actually on the exact opposite side of the world from Asia.

  • If you began anywhere in South America and dug a hole straight down to the other side, here is a map showing you where you'd end up popping out at If you began in Argentina or Chile, you'd end up somewhere in Siberia, Mongolia or China.

  • Paraguay would get you into Taiwan.

  • Peru would cause you to wind up in Vietnam, Cambodia or Malaysia.

  • Brazil would get you into the Philippines or Indonesia, while Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana surname and French Guiana would all end up putting you across the various islands of Indonesia.

  • So, yeah, South America's geography is probably a little weirder than you might have thought.

  • It waas.

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Why South America's Geography is Way Weirder Than You Think

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/10/24
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