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and the wonders they hold

AFRICA Africa is the second largest continent and home to the longest river (Nile) and largest desert (Sahara) in the world. The equator passes through the middle of Africa, so it receives direct sunlight throughout the year. The world's hottest country, Ethiopia, is found in this continent. 95% of the world's diamonds and over 50% of its gold comes from Africa along with 66% of our favorite export--chocolate!

ASIA Asia is the largest continent, covering one-third of earth’s surface. It also has the highest population; half of the world population lives here, thanks in no small part to the inclusion of the two most populous countries, China & India. It is the birth place of many religions including Hinduism, Islam and Buddhism. The worlds biggest cave can be found in Asia: Hang Son Doong (Mountain River Cave) in Vietnam.

EUROPE It is believed that Europe was originally named after ‘Europa’, a Phoenician Princess from Greek Mythology. The piano and guitar were both invented in Europe. Europe is home to the world's smallest country: Vatican City. Most of the countries of Europe use the same currency, the Euro.

SOUTH AMERICA The Andes Mountains in South America form the Second Highest Mountain System on earth next to the Himalayas. Mt. Aconcagua is the Highest Peak (7,021 m) of The Andes Mountain system. The highest waterfall can be found in South America, Angel Falls. South America is home to the largest river by water volume, the Amazon River. The name Amazon comes from Native American name for the river Amazunu meaning “Big Wave.” Both of the world’s highest volcanoes are found in South America – Mt. Chimborazo and Mt.Cotopaxi. The world’s highest lake and the largest in South America, Lake Titicaca, is also located in South America. It can be found at a height of over 3800 meters.

ANTARCTICA Up until 1840, the Antarctic was called Terra Australis Incognita (meaning the unknown southern land). Antarctica is approximately 14.2 million square kilometers in summer. During the winter months it nearly doubles in size due to the large amount of sea ice that forms along its periphery. Antarctica contains nearly 75% of the ice on earth, with some of its ice estimated to be as much as 4 km thick! The continent also contains about 70% of the world’s fresh water. The coldest natural temperature ever recorded on earth was in Antarctica: –89.2°C (–129°F).

OCEANIA Oceania is also the smallest continent in the world, covering only 3 million square miles. That’s tiny compared to Asia’s 17.2 million square miles. Australia, it's largest country, is home to the Great Barrier Reef and less famously, a fence that is as long as the drive from Seattle to Miami. At 16,024 feet (4,884 meters), Puncak Jaya on the island of New Guinea is the tallest mountain in Oceania, making it one of Earth’s Seven Summits. It is also the tallest island mountain in the world, and interestingly, it is also the highest point between the Himalayas and the Andes.

NORTH AMERICA North America was named after the explorer Americo Vespucci. It's the only continent that has every kind of climate – Tropical, Dry, Continental, Moderate, and Polar. There are a total of five time zones in North America. Lake Superior, one of the Great Lakes, is the largest fresh water lake in the world. It is located on the border between the United States and Canada. North America has the highest average income per person as compared to any other continent and average food intake per person is also greater than that of any other continents.

Explore the map to learn about each continent