World Facts

The 7 Continents of the World Ranked By Population

Asia is the world's largest continent by land area and population.

The world today is evolving in all aspects and the population is also growing. Over six billion people live in the world on different continents and the number is growing as the years roll by. Some continents host huge numbers while some have a paltry number. In this article, the order is listed from the largest to the lowest.

7. Asia - 4,436,224,000

Asia is both the world's largest continent by land area and population, accounting for 30% of Earth's total land area and approximately 60% of the global population. It is considered to be the birthplace of today’s mainstream religions like Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Taoism, as well as many other religions. Being such a large continent, Asia experiences diverse climates, with deserts in the Middle East and places covered in snow in the North. Russia is the biggest country by landmass; this country has a small part of it in Europe where the capital is and the rest of it stretches to the far east to the Pacific. Despite the fact that this continent has active conflicts taking place, it has not slowed down the population growth. China and India host the largest number of the total population.

6. Africa - 1,216,130,000

Africa comes in at number two in our list. Out of the world’s total population, the population of Africa accounts for 16%. The population has diverse languages spread across its fifty-four countries. Islam is practiced mainly in the north while Christianity is practiced to the south and central regions. Political instability still disturbs the population in some parts of Africa i.e. the civil war in South Sudan, illiteracy, unemployment, and epidemic outbreaks. Due to its colonial past, there are Arabic, Portuguese, English, French and Spanish speakers in the continent. Nigeria has the largest population while Seychelles has the smallest population.

5. Europe - 738,849,000

Europe has the third largest population, accounting for almost 10% of the global population, although a century ago, Europe accounted for approximately 1/4 of the world's total population. The continent accounts for almost 7% of Earth's total land area, and includes 47 countries. Europe is second only to Asia in terms of population density, with Monaco being not only the most densely populated country in Europe, but also in the world. There are several languages spoken by the population with English being among the dominant languages, as well as Italian, Spanish, German, French, and Russian, among others. The slow birth rate and an aging population are affecting the population growth. The continent is also facing a bitter debate over the quota of immigrants that the European states should take.

4. North America - 579,024,000

The continent comes the fourth in this list in terms of population size, accounting for approximately 8% of the global population although it encompasses 16.5% of Earth's total land area. The United States has the largest population, followed by Mexico and Canada. English, Spanish, and French account for the most spoken languages, although the US and Canada's diverse ethic population means that many languages are accounted for. Indigenous tribes are also accounted for among the population. Christianity is the largest religion, with smaller populations of Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, and Rastafarians.

3. South America - 422,535,000

South America comes fifth on this list, accounting for almost 6% of the global population. Brazil has the lion’s share of the population, followed by Colombia. Portuguese and Spanish are the dominant languages here owing to colonization by Portugal and Spain, others are French, Dutch, and native languages. The majority of the population, about 90% are Christians. The Amazon has a rich tropical climate that serves as a home for indigenous tribes. Their population has a mixture of several races including Africans due to the past slave trade that brought them.

2. Oceania - 39,901,000

Oceania, the smallest continent, comprises less than 1% of the global population. Oceania includes the regions of Australasia, Micronesia, Melanesia, and Polynesia. The country of Australia holds the largest territory and population in Oceania. Papua New Guinea and New Zealand also have large populations. Christianity is the largest religion in Oceania. English, French, Japanese, and Spanish are spoken, as well as the many indigenous languages.

1. Antarctica - 1,106

It isn’t surprising that only a few people live in this cold continent. The whole place is covered in ice and the temperatures are quite freezing. The population is largely comprised of research teams from other continents who have pitched tents here to do some research. The place, however, is protected by a treaty that forbids mining activities and dumping of nuclear waste as well as testing of nuclear bombs on the vast uninhabited continent. This has not convinced people to start moving in as permanent residences.

The 7 Continents of the World Ranked By Population

RankContinentPopulation (2016)% of Global Population
1Asia4,436,224,00059.69%
2Africa1,216,130,00016.36%
3Europe738,849,0009.94%
4North America579,024,0007.79%
5South America422,535,0005.68%
6Oceania39,901,0000.54%
7Antarctica1,1060%

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