Mexico, located in the southern part of North America, spans an area of 1,972,550 sq. km (761,610 sq. mi) and exhibits a diverse array of geographical features. The country borders the United States to the north, Guatemala and Belize to the southeast, the Pacific Ocean to the west, and the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea to the east.
Mountain Ranges: The country's terrain is dominated by several mountain ranges, including the Sierra Madre Occidental, extending from the Sonora-Arizona border southeast through various regions until it converges with the Sierra Madre del Sur and the Transverse Volcanic Axis in Central Mexico. Characterized by steep peaks and deep canyons, including Copper Canyon which is the deepest in North America, the highest point is Cero Mohinora, reaching 10,662 ft (3,250m). The Sierra Madre del Sur, another significant range, stretches 1,000km from southern Michoacan through Guerrero to eastern Oaxaca.
Coastal Regions: The coastal geography of Mexico is distinguished by the Gulf Coastal Plain on the east, adjacent to the Sierra Madre Occidental and bordering the Gulf of Mexico. The Pacific Ocean coastline features a narrow, rapidly rising coastal plain that ascends into the foothills of the mountains. In contrast, the coastlines along the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean are broader and ascend gradually into the interior.
Plateaus: The Central Mexican Plateau spans much of Northern and Central Mexico, bordered by the USA in the north and the Cordillera Neovolcanica in the south. The plateau is flanked by the Sierra Madre Occidental to the west and the Sierra Madre Oriental to the east, standing at an average elevation of 5,988 ft (1,825m) above sea level. It is largely covered by deserts and xeric shrublands.
Volcanic Activity: Mexico hosts a series of ancient volcanoes, many still active, stretching from the Pacific Ocean (north of Guadalajara) to the Gulf of Mexico, south of Veracruz. The most notable among these is the Pico de Orizaba Volcano, the third-highest mountain in North America and the highest point in Mexico, at a height of 5,636 m (18,491 ft).
Peninsulas: The geography of Mexico also includes the Baja Peninsula, a mountainous region extending 750 miles (1,200km) south from the U.S. border, and the Yucatan Peninsula, characterized by its limestone composition and thick tropical jungles. The Yucatan Peninsula, situated east of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, separates the Caribbean Sea from the Gulf of Mexico.
Water Bodies: Approximately 150 rivers flow through Mexico, the majority of which are small, unnavigable, and drain into the Pacific Ocean. Some of the more significant rivers include the Balsas, Conchos, Grijalva, Panuco, Papaloapan, and Usumacinta. The Rio Grande, originating from the San Juan Mountains in Colorado, forms a large portion of Mexico’s northern border with the United States. Furthermore, approximately 70% of Mexico's rivers drain into the Pacific Ocean. The country's two largest lakes are Lake Chapala and Lake Cuitzeo.
Mexico (officially, the United Mexican States) is divided into 32 federal entities, comprising of 31 states (estados, sing. estado) and 1 capital city. In alphabetical order, the states are: Aguascalientes, Baja California, Baja California Sur, Campeche, Chiapas, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Colima, Durango, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Mexico, Michoacan, Morelos, Nayarit, Nuevo Leon, Oaxaca, Puebla, Queretaro, Quintana Rao, San Luis Potosi, Sinaloa, Sonora, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Tlaxcala, Veracruz, Yucatan and Zacatecas. Mexico City is the capital city. The states are further subdivided into a total of 2,448 municipalities (municipios).
Covering an area of 1,972,550 sq. km, it is the 13th largest country in the world and the 3rd largest country in Latin America. Mexico is also the 10th most populous country and the most populous Spanish-speaking country in the world. Mexico City is the 2nd largest metropolitan area in the Western hemisphere.
Located in the Valley of Mexico in the center of the country is Mexico City – the capital and the largest city in Mexico. It is the administrative, cultural, educational and economic center of the country. It is also the most populous city and an important financial center in North America.
Mexico is a country located in the southern part of North America. The country is dissected by the Tropic of Cancer and is positioned in the Northern and Western hemispheres of the Earth. Mexico shares land borders with the United States of America to the north and with Guatemala and Belize to the southeast. It is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean to the south and west; by the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea to the east. Mexico shares its maritime borders with Cuba and Honduras.
Regional Maps: Map of North America
|United Mexican States
|Mexico City (Ciudad de Mexico)
|19 26 N, 99 08 W
|Mexican pesos (MXN)
|GDP Per Capita
This page was last updated on July 25, 2023