A coastline is where land meets the sea-and most of the countries in the world have coastlines, with only one fifth being landlocked. Having direct access to sea brings tons of advantages for a country-beaches, ports, shipping, and easy access to trade. Compared to the rest of the world's countries who are landlocked-meaning they are devoid of coastlines, such countries do not have to rely on other countries to bring them in direct contact to the oceans of the world. Here are the top 10 countries with the largest coastlines.
This list is based on the length of the countries' coastlines in kilometers.
Number Ten on the list is China, with its formal name as People's Republic of China. It has about five thousand islands and its coastlines has a total of 14,500 kilometers. China is located on the eastern part of Asia, west of the Pacific Ocean. It is the world's most populated country with 1.3 billion in population, and is the world's second largest country, based on land area. Even though it boasts of having one of the longest coastlines in the world, most Chinese people live inland.
9 New Zealand
Number Nine on the list is New Zealand, whose coastline length has a total of 15,134 kilometers. New Zealand is an island country in the southwestern part of the Pacific Ocean. It is an archipelago, or group of islands, located in Oceania. It has an Exclusive Economic Zone of 1.3 million square nautical miles and fishing accounts for 5% of its export products.
8 United States
Number Eight on the list is U.S. It is the world's third largest country, based on total area and has the world's biggest economy. The United States of America has the most diverse culture and multiethnic populations. Even if most of its states are landlocked, the U.S. also boasts of having the best beaches in the world, specifically the beaches of Hawaii and the US Virgin Islands.
Number Seven on the list is Norway. Its total coastline is 25, 148 kilometers. It is located in northern Europe and its coastlines face the Atlantic Ocean and the Barents Sea. Norway is known for its deeply indented coastlines or fjords-long and narrow arms of the sea with steep cliffs surrounding it. Most of its important cities and harbors are situated on fjords. Although the weather in this country is not very ideal for long swimming, the beaches in Oslo are also a good tourist destination.
Number Six on the list is Australia, officially called the Commonwealth of Australia. Its coastline length has a total of 25, 760 kilometers. This nation is the world's 6th largest country in terms of land area, and is the 12th largest economy in the world. Australia is home to the Great Barrier Reef, which is the largest reef in the world containing the world's most diverse range of sea creatures. Its coastline boasts of more than ten thousand beaches, with its most famous one, the Bondi Beach-Australia's mecca for surfers, tourists, and sun bathers. About eighty five percent of Australia's population live just about an hour away from the coastline.
The fifth country with the largest coastline is Japan. Its coastline length is 29, 751 kilometers. Japan is an island nation in East Asia-an archipelago consisting of 6,852 islands. It is the world's 3rd largest economy, just after China and the United States of America.
The fourth country with the largest coastline is the Philippines, also known as the Republic of the Philippines. Its coastline length has a total of 36, 280 kilometers. Its location is at the western part of the Pacific Ocean and is a state in Southeast Asia. The Philippines is an archipelago of more than 7,000 islands and has a diverse range of sea creatures in its waters. Fish is the primary source of protein among Filipinos, making fishing a very large industry in this country, with most of its inhabitants living just a few minutes away from their coastlines. One of its famous beaches, Boracay, was named the best island in the entire world in 2012, by Travel + Leisure-an international travel magazine based the US. Many of its beaches are famous the world over and its tourism industry brings the country enormous economic advantages.
Number Three on the list of the world's largest coastline is Russia, with a total coastline length of 37, 653 kilometers. Russia is, by far, the world's largest country based on territory. Its coastline is along the Arctic and the Pacific Oceans. The coastlines along the north and east of Russia are covered in ice.
Taking second place for the top 10 countries with the largest coastlines in Indonesia, or also known as the Republic of Indonesia. Its coastline length has a total of 54, 716 kilometers. It is an archipelago located in Southeast Asia, which boasts of over 17,000 islands. Because of its access to land and sea, it has been an important trade region in the area. They are the world's 16th largest country and has the second highest level of biodiversity, just next to Brazil. Its north coastline consists of low and swampy areas of mangrove forests but the southern coasts, like Java and Bali are exposed to the swells of the Indian Ocean. Bali, is definitely one of theworld's most visited tourist destinations and has become one of the country's wealthiest regions.
And Number One on the list of the top ten countries with the largest coastlines is Canada, which has a total coastline length of 202,080 kilometers-four times bigger than Indonesia. It has 52,455 islands and ranks second in the world's largest country by total area. Canada borders on three oceans: the Atlantic, Arctic and Pacific Oceans. If your walked the shorelines of Canada with an average speed of 20 kilometers a day, it would take you thirty three years to complete-it's that big. Nearly a fourth of the world's fresh water is in this country.
So these are the top ten countries with the largest coastlines in the world. Greenland, which has a total coastline length of 44,087 kilometers, is not on the list since it is not a country per say, but an autonomous division of Denmark. If Greenland were to be included, it would be number three on the list.