Which Countries Span More Than One Continent?

Turkey is an example of a transcontinental nation.

Transcontinental nations are countries which are located on more than one continent. They are also known as intercontinental states. The transcontinental countries are known to be part of a particular continent but a portion of or its overseas territories lie in another continent. While several countries with non-contiguous overseas boundaries are considered transcontinental countries, only a few countries have territories crossing overland continental boundaries, especially the boundary line between Asia and Europe. The boundary between the two continents is purely conventional resulting in several countries finding themselves almost entirely on one of the continents.


The Republic of Egypt is one of the most ancient places on earth. Most of the country’s territory lie in North Africa but the northeastern part of the country lies in the Middle East, which is in Asia. The portion lies entirely on the Asian peninsula with the portion including the Ismailia Governorate which is equally divided by the Suez Canal. The Suez Governorate also lies in Asia and is conterminous with the transcontinental city of Suez.


Turkey is located at the junction of Asia and Europe and bordered by eight countries forming the two continents. The larger portion of Turkey is located in Western Asia while the remaining portion is located in South Eastern Europe. The city of Istanbul lies on both sides of one of the Turkish Strait (Bosporus) hence making it a transcontinental city. Canakkale City in Turkey also situated in two continents, Europe and Asia.


Russia is the largest country in the world covering over 12% of the earth’s land area. Russia forms part of the Eurasia countries with its territory lying in Europe and Asia. It shares borders with a4 European and Asian countries. Its regions’ borders follow the continental divide. The Orenburg City on the Ural River is a transcontinental city.


Kazakhstan is a Central Asian country with a smaller part in Europe. Its provincial borders do not follow the Ural River. Two of its provinces are transcontinental, Atyrau and West Kazakhstan Provinces. The capital of Atyrau Province is split by the Ural and is an intercontinental city with most of it in Asia. Two of districts in Atyrau are entirely in Europe while three districts are entirely in Asia. The remaining two districts, Inderskiy and Makhambetskiy, are transcontinental. One district of the Western Kazakhstan is transcontinental while five districts lie in Europe and the other five in Asia.


Azerbaijan is one of the six independent Turkic States. The territory of Azerbaijan lies in both Europe and Asia with the northeastern district borders running along the Caucasus watershed. Five of the districts are entirely in Europe while the transcontinental district of Khizi is equally divided on the two sides of the watershed. The other 53 districts of Azerbaijan are in Asia although the country is a member of the Council of Europe.

The Non-Contiguous Transcontinental Nations

Several countries have their overseas territories in other continents. The territory of Greece includes several islands off the coast, Asia Minor. Greenland is a territory of Denmark although it is located on the North American tectonic plate. France has several overseas departments and collectivities in other continents including Guadeloupe in North America, French Guiana in South America, and Mayote in Africa among others. Other countries with overseas territories include Italy, the US, Portugal, Colombia, and Venezuela. Several countries including Chile and Argentina claim ownership of portions of the continent of Antarctica.


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