Asia is the largest continent in the world by land area, covering an area of 44,579,000 squared kilometers. This area represents roughly 30% of the world's total land area. Additionally, Asia has a population size of 4.5 billion individuals, which is 60% of the world population. There are a total of 48 countries in Asia. This article highlights the top 10 largest countries in Asia in terms of area.
The 10 Largest Countries in Asia
Russia is not only the largest country in Asia, but is also the largest country in the world. It covers a total area of 17,075,200 square km (6,612,100 square miles) and is home to 144,463,451 people. The capital of Russia is Moscow. The country is so large that it stretches across 11 distinct time zones. Russia encompasses a number of geographic features, including plains, semi-desert, mountains, coastlines, and tundra. This wide variety of habitats supports a significant number of plant and animal species. To help conserve this high level of biodiversity, Russia has protected 40 areas as UNESCO biosphere reserves.
The second largest country in Asia is China, which covers an area of around 9.5 million square km (3.7 million square miles). China has a population size of just over 1.403 billion, making it the most populated country in the world. The capital of China is Beijing. Mount Everest, the tallest mountain in the world, is located in the country and forms the border between China and Nepal. Additionally, China is home to several ecosystems, including the Gobi Desert, the Tibetan Plateau, subtropical forests, and shores along the Pacific Ocean. Politically, China is divided into provinces (22), autonomous regions (5), controlled municipalities (4), and special administrative regions (2).
India is the third largest Asian nation. It covers an area of over 3.2 million square km (1.269 million square miles). Additionally, it has a population of more than 1.324 billion individuals, making it the second most populated country in the world. The country makes up the vast majority of the Indian Peninsula and has coastlines along the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean. Inland, it is home to a variety of habitats, including the Thar Desert in the west, the Himalayan mountain range in the north, and the Indo-Gangetic watershed region in the north and east.
The fourth largest country in Asia is Kazakhstan, which covers 2.7 million square km (1,052,100 square miles). Kazakhstan is located in Central Asia and shares borders with the Caspian Sea, Russia, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, and China. The country has a population size of nearly 18 million, the majority of whom are ethnic Kazakhs. Kazakhstan is the largest landlocked nation in the world and is home to the Kazakh Steppe. The arid steppe region covers 310,600 square miles, making it the largest in the world.
5. Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia is the fifth largest country in Asia and is located in the Arabian Peninsula, where it covers 2,149,690 square km (830,000 square miles). It has a total population size of approximately 33 million individuals. The country has coastlines on both the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea, and the majority of its area is characterized by dry, desert lands. Saudi Arabia is home to the second largest oil reserve in the world and relies on the petroleum industry as a large part of its economy. In fact, the country is the largest producer and exporter of oil in the world.
Iran is the sixth largest country in Asia and the second largest country in the Middle East, with a total area of 1,648,195 square km (636,372 square miles). The population of Iran is estimated at approximately 80,829,192 people. The country has a long history, and hosts the third largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Asia (22). Additionally, Iran is covered in mountain ranges, basins, and the Iranian Plateau. It has coastlines along the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, and the Caspian Sea.
Mongolia is located between China and Russia. It covers an area of 1,566,000 square km (605,000 square miles), making it the seventh largest country in Asia. Mongolia is also the second largest landlocked nation in the world. Most of the regions in Mongolia are covered in mountains and grassland steppes with the exception of the Gobi Desert, which is located in the southern area of the country. Additionally, the country's entire area sits upon the Mongolian Plateau. The population of Mongolia is estimated to be 3,081,677.
Indonesia consists of more than 17,000 islands between the Pacific and Indian Oceans. It is the eighth largest country in Asia and the largest country in southeast Asia. Together, these islands cover an area of 1,904,569 square km (735,358 square miles), which are divided between Asia and Oceania. The country has a total population size of 261,115,456, making it the fourth most populated country in the world. The three largest Indonesian islands are Sumatra, Celebes, and Java. A large percentage of the country's economy relies on agriculture, including crops like tea, coffee, rice, rubber, and palm oil.
Pakistan is located to the northwest of India, within South Asia. Additionally, it shares a border with the Gulf of Oman, the Arabian Sea, China, Afghanistan, and Iran. The country covers a total area of 881,913 square km (340,509 square miles), making it the ninth largest country in Asia. Pakistan has a population size of approximately 211,819,886 individuals. Pakistan has a high level of biodiversity, which inhabits a number of ecosystems. A large area is covered in mountain ranges. In fact, Pakistan is home to five mountain peaks greater than 8,000 meters above sea level.
The tenth largest country in Asia is Turkey, which covers a total area of 783,356 square km (302,455 square miles). It is considered a transcontinental country and a small portion of its total area lie within Europe. Turkey has a total population size of 79,814,871. Most of the country is bordered by water, including the Black Sea, the Sea of Marmara, and the Aegean Sea. Additionally, Turkey encompasses several geographic features, ranging from mountains to river valleys. The country is rich in biodiversity and is home to more than 80,000 animal species.