Area: 1,068,302 sq mi (2,766,890 sq km) / WorldRank: 9
Location: Southern and Western Hemispheres, in the southern region of the South American continent;
bordered by Bolivia and Paraguay on the north; Brazil, Uruguay, and the South Atlantic Ocean on the east; and Chile on the south and west.
Coordinates: 34°00′S, 64°00′W
Borders: 6,006 mi (9,665 km) / Bolivia, 517 mi (832km); Brazil, 761 mi (1,224 km); Chile, 3,200 mi (5,150
km); Paraguay, 1,168 mi (1,880 km); Uruguay, 360 mil (579 km)
Coastline: 3,100 mi (4,989 km)
Territorial Seas: 12 NM
Highest Point: Cerro Aconcagua, 22,835 ft (6,960 m)
Lowest Point: Salinas Chicas, 131 ft (40 m) below see level
Longest Distances: 2,268 mi (3,650 km) N-S; 889 mil(1,430 km) E-W
Longest River: Paraná, 3,060 mi (4,900 km)
Largest Lake: Lago Buenos Aires, 860 sq mi (2,240 sq km)
Natural Hazards: Earthquakes, violent windstorms known as pamperos, periodic heavy flooding, volcanic activity
Population: 37,384,816 (July 2001 est.) / World Rank:31
Capital City: Buenos Aires, on the northernmost point of the Atlantic coast
Largest City: Buenos Aires, population 12,955,300 (2002 est.)
The region of Patagonia takes it name from the word pantagon, “big feet.” This name referred to the Tehuelche Indians who first entered the fertile plains wearing oversized boots.
Argentina is the eighth largest country in the world. The terrain varies dramatically across the country’s different regions, as both altitude and latitude play a major role in Argentina’s geography. The country’s four major physiographic provinces are the Andean region, the lowland North, the central Pampas, and Patagonia. Patagonia includes Tierra del Fuego, the southernmost point of the South American continent, shared by Argentina and Chile.
The Andean region makes up 30 percent of Argentina. Home to the Western Hemisphere’s highest point, Cerro Aconcagua, the Andes Mountains are broad and lofty in the north, and narrower and progressively lower in the south. This area also contains half of the Lake District (the other half is in Chile)
THE COAST, ISLANDS, AND THE OCEAN
Oceans and Seas
The Atlantic Ocean comprises Argentina’s eastern border. Argentina has one of the largest ports on the Atlantic Ocean in Buenos Aires. The area of the South Atlantic around the Valdés Peninsula is home to one of the world’s largest concentrations of the Atlantic Right Whale (Eubalaena glacialis). The Argentine coast is also known for being home to the Magellanic Penguins.
Argentina shares the offshore island territory of Tierra del Fuego with Chile, and also owns Isla de los Estados, separated from Tierra del Fuego by the Strait of Le Maire. Argentina claims the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), a large archipelago to the southeast of the country that is under the control of the United Kingdom.
CLIMATE AND VEGETATION
Argentina’s climate ranges from subtropical in thenorth to humid in the central regions, to subantarctic in the south. The average temperatures for the summer months—January, February, and March—are highs of 75° to 95°F (24° to 35°C) and lows of 60° to 75°F (16° to 24°C), with January being the warmest month. The winter months, May through August, are the driest period of the year, and the coldest months are June and July. The average winter temperatures are highs of 58° to 65°F (15° to 8°C) and lows of 47° to 53°F (8° to 12°C). Climate variations are due the country’s range in altitude as well as latitude.