Beyond the Size

Size Matters: Countries That Are Larger Than You Think

Do you ever look at a map or globe and feel surprised by the size of certain countries? Maybe you thought

India was the same size as the United States, or that

Indonesia was just a small island.

It’s common to have misconceptions about the size of countries, and this article aims to provide a clearer understanding of just how expansive some of these nations are. Countries that are larger than people think:


Indonesia is an archipelago nation made up of 17,500 islands. Despite being known for its tropical beaches and Bali tourism, it is the fourth most populous country in the world, home to around 140 million people.

The island of Java accounts for the majority of the population and is where its capital city, Jakarta, is located.


Many may think of

Vietnam as a small country, but it has a landmass similar to that of Japan.

Vietnam is uniquely shaped, stretching over 3,200 km long while being only up to 50 km wide at its narrowest points.

It is also home to 392 rivers and is a significant exporter of cashews and black pepper.


The largest country in Africa,

Algeria, is also one of the world’s most massive countries, ranking 10th in total land area. The Sahara Desert makes up a large portion of the country, but the northern coastal areas have a more moderate climate.

Algeria has a diverse linguistic culture, with Arabic and Berber being the predominant languages and French being the second most commonly spoken language. Its wildlife is unique, with the Fennec fox and Saharan cheetah calling this country home.


India is often thought of as one of the world’s most populous countries, but its size is not always given proper consideration. While it may be only one-third of the size of the United States, it still has a landmass of roughly 3.3 million km and is the seventh-largest country in the world.

India’s sacred cow phenomenon is a defining aspect of its culture, and its people speak 22 different languages.


Located on the border of South America,

Chile has a vast land area that can be surprising to some. Its length narrows further from north to south, stretching over 4,300 km from its border with Peru to Cape Horn.

Chile is a hotspot for earthquakes, with roughly 8,000 earthquakes occurring each day, and 18 major earthquakes happening each year.


The country located on the Indo-Chinese peninsula also has a more significant landmass than people usually expect. While it is similar in size to Sweden, it has a population of over 69 million people and is distinguished by its cultural and religious practices; over 95% of its citizens practice Buddhism, and the Thai alphabet consists of 76 letters.

The Philippines

Composed of 7,641 islands, the Philippines is comparable in size to Italy or Arizona. Despite being a small nation, it has over 176 languages and dialects, including the fifth-largest English-speaking population in the world.

Comparison of country sizes on a world map:


Russia is the world’s largest country, spanning over two continents, Europe and Asia. Its total land area is roughly 17.1 million km, approximately 11% of the earth’s total land area.

Russia is also the ninth most populous country in the world, with over 144 million people living there.

Other countries that seem small on a world map

Many countries do not receive the recognition they deserve regarding their landmass. For instance, the small island nation of Madagascar, located off the coast of Africa, has a land area approximating that of France.

Pakistan has a landmass almost the size of Italy, with a population of over 213 million people. Nigeria is another example of a nation that is not frequently considered as being expansive, but it offers a landmass similar to that of Venezuela and a population of over 200 million.

Final Thoughts

It is no secret that maps can be misleading, and the size of countries can often take us by surprise. Although size may not matter, it is still fascinating to understand the different scales and land masses that exist around the world.

Countries such as


Algeria, and

Vietnam are prime examples of nations that may appear small on a globe, but their actual land masses hold great significance. It is essential for us to broaden our perspectives and broaden our horizons by learning about such exciting facts.

When it comes to the world we live in, there are always new and exciting facts to discover. From different cultures and beliefs to natural occurrences and geography, the diversity present in our world is fascinating.

In this article, we will delve into miscellaneous facts about select countries, as well as general information about the world map itself. Cow Protection in


Cows are regarded as sacred in

India, a belief that stems from the country’s Hindu and Buddhist religions.


India recognizes cows as protected animals, and it is a punishable crime to harm or kill them. The cow remains an integral part of

Indian culture, and it is common for Hindus to consume dairy products sourced from cows.

Earthquakes in


Chile is one of the world’s most seismically active locations, registering up to 8,000 earthquakes each day. It is situated where the Nazca and South American tectonic plates meet, making it a natural hotspot for earthquakes.

Though most earthquakes are small and go unnoticed,

Chile experiences about 18 major ones each year. The most potent earthquake on record occurred in 1960, registering at 9.5 magnitude.

Languages in the Philippines

The Philippines has a vast linguistically diverse population, with over 176 dialects spread across its 7,641 islands. About two-thirds of the nation’s population speaks one language: Tagalog.

English is also widely spoken, with more than 96% of Filipinos having some understanding of the language. In fact, the Philippines is the fifth largest English-speaking nation in the world.

Total Number of Countries in the World

There are 195 countries in the world, each with its unique history, culture, and geography. These countries vary greatly in population, with the most populous being China and

India and the least populous being Vatican City.

Many of these countries have their own currency, government, and laws, making them distinct entities with their own unique identities.

Largest and Smallest Countries by Land Area

The largest country in the world is Russia, covering an expansive territory of approximately 17,098,242 km. In contrast, the smallest country is Vatican City, with an area covering just 0.49 km.

Vatican City is also home to some of the most famous and historically significant religious monuments, including St. Peter’s Basilica.

Discrepancy Between Perceived Size and Actual Size of Countries on a World Map

Many people do not realize the significant discrepancy between the perceived size of countries and their actual size. For example, Greenland appears to be as large as Africa on many world maps, but in reality, Africa is fourteen times larger.

Similarly, Alaska may seem small compared to the United States on a map, but it is actually over twice the size of Texas. These inaccuracies can lead to misunderstandings and misconceptions about a nation’s geography and culture.


Our world is full of surprises, and there is always something new to learn and discover. From the protective laws of cows in

India to the linguistically diverse population of the Philippines and the seismically active location of

Chile, these miscellaneous facts provide a fascinating glimpse into different cultures and geographies.

Our maps, too, can be misleading, and we must look beyond their surface level to gain a better understanding of the true size and identity of countries. In conclusion, we have explored various countries, their sizes, unique cultural practices, and seismically active locations, as well as general information about the world’s geography.

These facts may challenge our perceptions and expand our knowledge on a wide range of topics. Understanding the diversity of our world is crucial to our growth and development as global citizens, and we must continue to learn and appreciate the unique identities of each nation.


Q: Why are cows sacred in

India? A: Cows are considered sacred in

India due to their religious significance in Hinduism and Buddhism.

Q: How many earthquakes occur in

Chile every year? A:

Chile experiences about 18 major earthquakes each year, in addition to up to 8,000 smaller ones that go unnoticed.

Q: What is the total number of countries in the world? A: There are 195 countries in the world, each with their own unique culture and history.

Q: Which is the largest country in the world? A:

Russia is the largest country in the world, covering an area of approximately 17,098,242 km.

Q: Why do some countries appear larger or smaller than their actual size on a world map? A: The perception of size can be misleading on world maps due to the distortion created by the map’s projection, which causes some countries to appear larger or smaller than they actually are.

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