What is the largest island on earth?

There are hundreds of thousands of islands on our planet. They arise in the midst of rivers, lakes, seas, oceans, and are surrounded on all sides by water. They could easily be compared with the continents, but the main difference between the islands is the size. All of them are much smaller than continents. What is the largest island on earth? Where is he located?

The largest islands of the Earth

Some islands are very tiny. For example, Pontikonisi in Greece or Visovac in Croatia do not exceed 200 meters in length. Others are stretched for hundreds of kilometers, accommodating on themselves numerous cities and towns.

Islands are found in any water bodies. In rivers, they most often arise from accumulations that cause currents. In the seas and oceans, they are formed due to volcanoes or the vital activity of corals. In addition, they may be part of the continental crust that rises above the surface of the water.

Mainland origin has the largest island on Earth - Greenland. It covers an area of ​​2.130 million kilometers and is home to 56 thousand people.Geologically and geographically, it belongs to North America, but administratively belongs to Denmark.

Of the largest islands of the planet Greenland is located north of all. You can find the rest of the world record holders in the table:



A country

New Guinea

790 000

Papua New Guinea, Indonesia


737 500

Indonesia, Brunei, Malaysia


587 041


Baffin Land

507 451



425 000


United Kingdom

229 946

United Kingdom


227 414


"Green Country"

In Greenlandic, the name of the largest island on Earth sounds like “Kalaalit Nunaat”, or “land of people”. But another name has taken root in the world - Greenland, or the “green country” that Eirik Red gave it. Why the island, covered with ice, the navigator called green, just no one knows. However, there are several versions to this effect.

Eirik Auburn is considered the discoverer of the largest island of the Earth. He went there in 980, after he was expelled from Norway and Iceland for committing several murders. He landed on the southwest coast of the island, which in summer is covered with flowering vegetation.Seeing a lot of greenery on the seemingly icy land, the navigator came up with the appropriate name.

According to another version, Eirik liked the island so much that when he returned from exile, he began to recruit Icelanders there. To be more convincing, he gave him the name Greenland. Anyway, volunteers for the development of the island were found. Under the leadership of Eirik Ryzhy near modern Kassiarsuk, they founded the first European settlement.

the largest island of the earth


The largest island of the Earth is only three times smaller than Australia and almost 50 times larger than Denmark. It is located between Iceland and Canada, washed by the Arctic and Atlantic oceans.

Most of Greenland is in the Arctic Circle - it is a zone of permafrost and permanent snow. Only 137 days a year, the usual change of day and night takes place here, during the rest of the time you can observe the polar night or the polar day.

which island is the largest on earth

It had to be called “icy land”, because the ice here covers 84% ​​of the territory. Non-melting cover reaches several kilometers in thickness. If it melted, the level of the World Ocean would rise by 6-7 meters. The largest glacier - Jacobshavn.With a speed of 7 kilometers per year, it is the fastest moving in the world.

Despite the abundance of ice, Greenland is not devoid of life. The island is inhabited by many butterflies, spiders, beetles, partridges, gulls and eider live, deer, musk oxen, lemmings, polar wolves and polar bears live. Fish, shrimps, whales, seals and walruses are found in the surrounding waters.


The lands of the largest island in the world are covered with vegetation just off the coast. It is very poor and is represented by dwarf trees, mosses, lichens, heather and tundra grasses. This is not surprising, because in Greenland there are arctic and subarctic climate types. For the most part it is harsh, continental, off the coast - softer, marine.

On the coasts, the weather is very unstable, blizzards are often formed and winds blow, precipitation falls. The most favorable conditions in the southwest of the island. There, average temperatures range from -7 ° C in January to +10 ° C in July, and fogs often occur in summer. The coldest on the eastern and northern shores, where the temperature drops to -35 ° C.

The closer to the center of the island and further north, the rainfall is less.In the central area of ​​the ice sheet, temperatures do not rise above zero, in winter they can drop to -65 ° C. Usually there are strong stock winds blowing at a speed of 70 m / s.

 Greenland is the largest island on earth.


Greenland is one of the few countries in the world where the majority of the population is represented by indigenous people. About 90% of the population accounts for Eskimos (Inuit), and only 10% - for the Danes and other Europeans.

The ancestors of the modern Greenland Eskimos arrived on the island around the XIII century. Prior to this, it was inhabited by peoples close to the Aleuts and Chukchas, as well as the Vikings. But all of them for some reason disappeared. Perhaps because of the inability to adapt to a rapidly deteriorating climate (it is assumed that in the early Middle Ages it was much warmer).

Greenland culture is a mixture of Inuit and European traditions. Eskimos still believe in spirits, and build homes from ice blocks, needles. Folk clothing is now considered festive. Sealskin capes have long replaced sports jackets, but many wear national shoes.

Europeans brought writing with them by teaching local Inuit. They built cities on the island, brought with them medicine, education and Christianity.With their arrival, some of the traditional activities of the Eskimos disappeared, but fishing and breeding of musk oxen remained. Many Inuit work in industry, transport and services.

the largest island of the land

Life in Greenland

The country covers not only the territory of the largest island of the Earth, but also the adjacent islands: Imer, Holm, Kun, Klaverin, Eggers and others. Autonomy as part of Denmark, she received back in 1979. After the referendum in 2009, she received even more rights and opportunities for self-government. The official language is Greenland, but all citizens must learn Danish. As a currency here goes the Danish krone.

On the largest island of the Earth there are no railways, there are no roads between cities. From one point to another can be reached by plane or ship. There are other options, such as snowmobiles or dog sledding.

All settlements on the island are located on the southern and western coasts, on a narrow strip between the eternal ice and the ocean. The largest of them - the capital Nuuk, in which there are 16,500 people.

Greenland is considered the most sparsely populated country.But this does not prevent her from being one of the world suicide leaders. An attempt to settle accounts with life makes about every fourth inhabitant of the country.

 the name of the largest island on earth


Infinite ice of fancy shapes, winding fjords and drifting icebergs. If this is not enough - do not worry, Greenland still have something to brag about. On the largest island of the Earth is the largest national park in the world. Its area is 970,000 km2.

Explore the local fjords and see how icebergs are “born”, they are offered to tourists on passenger ships, and for extreme lovers there are always kayaks. All year round in Greenland there are skiing and snowboarding, sledding trips and climbing ice mountains. On the island you can watch the northern lights. The best time for this comes in December and January, when the polar night falls to Greenland.

 the world's largest island of the earth

After enjoying all the natural beauty of the island, you should go to the city of Nuuk. In the capital, you can see the typical Greenlandic architecture, visit museums, and most importantly, meet Santa Claus himself. Here, on the shores of the cold sea of ​​Baffin is his home.

Related news

What is the largest island on Earth image, picture, imagery

What is the largest island on Earth 49

What is the largest island on Earth 57

What is the largest island on Earth 86

What is the largest island on Earth 43

What is the largest island on Earth 55

What is the largest island on Earth 37

What is the largest island on Earth 73

What is the largest island on Earth 37

What is the largest island on Earth 28