If You Know 28/35 of These World Geography Fun Facts, You May Be a Genius!

Zoe Samuel

Image: shutterstock.

About This Quiz

There are all sorts of strange places in the world, from mountains so high that humans can barely survive at the peak, to caves so vast you could fit skyscrapers inside them; from deserts so dry that no person can survive them without some very major planning, to jungles where it rains almost constantly; from empty wildernesses where nobody ever goes to vibrant cities that teem with people. Across all of these places, there are a variety of climates and cultures and people of every stripe.

We all have to study these things in geography class in school, but not all of us pay too much attention. It's certainly possible to go through life without having much sense of the majesty and variety of this wonderful planet of course, and even to travel somewhat without really noticing all the splendor of the landscapes through which one might pass. Still, that would mean missing out on an awful lot of fascinating and delightful facts, figures, and sights.

This quiz is for all the people who are paying attention, even if they weren't back in grade school. If you're someone who devours information about this beautiful world of ours, this is your chance to show it off. Let's see how you do!

What is the lowest place on earth that isn't covered by water?

The Bentley Subglacial Trench is in Antarctica and very far inland. It is over 7000 feet below sea level, making it by far the lowest non-watery place on the planet.

What is the driest place on earth?

The Atacama is the driest. Antarctica is technically also a desert too!

What is the biggest organism on earth?

The honey fungus is not an animal or a vegetable, but that guy is huge. It's the biggest living thing on the planet, clocking in at 2,200 acres.

What is the fastest bird in the world?

The peregrine falcon is one heck of a badass. It goes horizontal at a paltry 50mph but it can dive up to 200mph.

Which country is the most densely populated?

Monaco is only a few square blocks but there are a lot of people in them!

Which country has the highest rainfall?

As a densely jungle-covered nation, Colombia enjoys many feet of rainfall per year.

What is special about Lake Hillier, Australia?

Lake Hillier is pink. Really pink. Bottle the water and it's still pink. It's not just half-assed pink, either - it's bubblegum pink. It might be because of special salt, it might be bacteria, but either way, that is one pink lake.

How fast do the continents move?

The continents move an inch per year. If they were going much faster, it would get very complicated to build anything!

Where is the world's highest cliff, measured as a single continuous drop?

Mt. Thor on Baffin Island has the highest single drop. There are higher cliffs with breaks in them, but this one is 4000 feet straight down, with a total drop of over 5500 feet.

In what sort of body of water is Vulcan Island in the Philippines?

It's actually an island in a lake, in an island, in a lake! Picture a donut with another donut inside it.

What is the deepest lake in the world?

At over 5300 feet deep, Lake Baikal in Russia is the big daddy of all lakes. It's more than a mile deep!

How many time zones are there in Russia?

Yep, Russia literally goes almost halfway around the world. It's that big.

Which is the smallest country in the world?

Vatican City is just a few blocks. It's teeny tiny!

Which is further west, Reno or Los Angeles?

It's hard to imagine but yes, Reno is actually entirely west of LA. Seriously, look at a map.

Which African country is the closest to the USA?

This will blow your mind: the state that is the shortest distance to Africa is Maine.

Two countries are doubly landlocked: That is, they are landlocked countries where every nation they border is also landlocked. One is Liechtenstein. Which is the other?

Uzbekistan is in Central Asia - that is, central Central Asia.

By what other name is the Darvaza gas crater known?

It's a collapsed natural gas mine in Derweze, Turkmenistan that truly does look like Hell is underneath it and trying to get out.

Which American state has a portion in the eastern hemisphere?

Longitude lines converge at the top of the planet so Alaska's very northerly position mean it actually reaches into the eastern hemisphere.

Which is the longest canal in the world?

The Beijing-Hangzhou Canal is 1104 miles long! It's also really old in places, dating back to the 5th century. It is a tourist attraction as it is very beautiful.

What city covers the biggest landmass?

Hulunbuir doesn't have the most people, by any stretch, but it's really spread out.

What percentage of people live in the northern hemisphere?

It contains most of the land, but even more importantly, it contains the vast majority of the fertile land. Hence, most of the people live there!

How many countries have a population higher than 250m?

They are: China, the USA, India, and Indonesia. The next biggest is Brazil, around 200m.

How many countries have "Guinea" as part of their name?

There's Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau and Papua New Guinea. That's a lot of guineas!

Which of these is not a type of rock?

Rocks are either sedimentary, metamorphic or igneous, but they do not include alloys - those are mixes of metals.

Where is the famous Cave of Crystals?

The cave was flooded once but due to pumping in the Naica Mine, now it can be visited, though it's nearly maximum humidity and over 90F, so it's not very nice in there and you can only spend short periods inside without protective gear. It's in Naica, Chihuahua, Mexico and is full of selenite crystals so vast that a human is dwarfed by them.

What is the biggest type of tree, by volume?

The biggest tree is General Sherman, a very mighty giant sequoia. By volume, it is about 50% bigger than the nearest competition.

What is the highest bridge in the world?

Bridge height is measured from deck to ground below, not structure height. At 1854 feet from the deck to the ground, the Duge Bridge in China is the highest. Eight of the world's highest bridges are in China.

How wide is the Channel separating the UK and France, at the narrowest point?

The Channel is 22 miles wide from Dover to Calais. It is a famously tough swim as the current is very strong because of the narrowing, and the cold water from the North Sea is very harrowing on the body. Some people have swum it many times, though!

Is the world round?

The world is not a perfect sphere. It is slightly squashed. That means you are further from the core when you are on the equator than at the North Pole, even if you are at sea level.

How many countries share a border with China?

China is very big, and has many neighbors: 14, to be precise.

Which continent has the highest fraction of the Earth's fresh water?

90% of the fresh water on the planet is in Antarctica.

Which has a longer coastline, Australia or Canada?

It's Canada! Australia is bigger, but it has a less "wiggly" shape so the coast is shorter.

What fraction of the fresh lakes in the world are in Canada?

Yes, Canada is big, and yes, it has a LOT of lakes. More than half of them, to be precise.

What point on Earth is closest to the moon?

Since the planet is not actually round, Everest isn't the highest point. Mount Chimborazo in Ecuador is higher.

Which is further north, Maine or London?

People think of Maine as very far north, but it isn't. London's mild climate - its winters never see snow that is typical to Maine annually - is thanks to oceanic currents.

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