Top Ten Common Geography Mistakes

The Top Ten
1 Africa is a country

This confuses me. Africa is obviously a continent, but when I saw this my brain stopped working.

I have an Ethiopian classmate and she didn't know South Africa was a country.

I don't understand why people think this but sadly a lot of people do.

South Africa is the country at the south of Africa, the continent.

2 Greenland is as big as Africa

This is just a mistake that happens with the warped maps. Stop trying to convert a globe into a rectangle!

An effect of the Mercator projection, this is by no means accurate. Africa is really 14 times larger than Greenland.

2D Maps can trick you, but if you look on a globe, Greenland is a lot smaller than Africa.

No. Africa is 14 times as large as Greenland, not 14 times later than Greenland.

3 England and the United Kingdom are the same thing

England is one of 4 nations that make up the UK. I hope it stays that was. England is the main political and economic part of the country, but I cannot imagine it without Wales, Scotland and NI. Lots of the greatest figures from 'England' are actually from other nations in the UK. I hope that Brexit does not end the UK, because although England doesn't seem to give much credit, those other 3 vital nations have done a lot. Call the Titanic English if you want, but it was made in Belfast. Sure, Wellington did well at Waterloo - but he was actually Scottish. What are we going to call the heir to the throne if Wales wasn't part of the UK - we couldn't call the the Prince/Princess of Wales anymore

England is not the UK and I want it to stay that way.

The UK - Nothern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England
Great Britain - Scotland, Wales, England
England - The constituent country with the largest population out of the 4 nations.

England is part of the UK, it's like saying Washington and USA are the same thing.

England is the biggest part of the United Kingdom, other countries in there are Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

4 Toronto is the capital of Canada

Toronto is the capital of Ontario, whereas Ottawa is the national capital of Canada.

It's actually Ottawa, but to be fair, both cities are in the same province.

Toronto is the biggest Canadian city but the capital is Ottawa.

The capital is Ottawa

5 America is a country

The Americas or America comprises of many different countries including The United States Of America, which is a country in North America, one of the region Americas.

Sometimes when you talk about America you're referring to the United States Of America.

It is the United States of America, America is a large geographical region.

Welp, sometimes even some U.S people refer their country as that.

6 Holland is a country

Even most Dutchmen hate it when their country was labeled "Holland".

The sad truth is that in Bulgarian language, the Netherlands is called "Holland".

Holland is just a small coastal area of the Netherlands which doesn't refer to the entire country. I believe people think it's the same thing, since in other languages a form similar to Holland is used.

I thought that because when I went to the Netherlands everyone was saying Holland instead of the Netherlands so I assumed Holland was another name for the Netherlands.

Many Americans refer to the Netherlands as Holland, but really, Holland is just a large area of the Netherlands. Important cities are in Holland, including Amsterdam and The Hague.

7 Deserts always have high temperatures

While many deserts around 30 degrees latitude can reach significantly high temperatures (Sahara, Mojave, etc. ), there can be some cold deserts, A desert refers to any area with less than 10 inches of rain a year. This includes Antarctica and the Gobi Desert

The definition of a desert is not "a place with lots of sand and very high temperatures", it's "an area with rainfall less than 10 inches per year". So Antartica, technically, is a desert.

They are dry, which means in the daytime they are very hot, but at night you could freeze to death.

They temperatures are dry.

8 Moscow is in Asia

Moscow, the capital of Russia, is in Europe. You need to know that Russia lies on 2 continents, Asia & Europe.

I don't know anyone who thinks this..

It's actually located in the European part of Russia, so technically it's in Europe

9 Colorado is a perfect square
10 Charleston is the capital of South Carolina

Charleston is a major city in South Carolina, but the capital is Columbia. West Virginia's capital is Charleston, so basically, two cities have the same name.

I commonly make this mistake. I'm into birds and a lot of bird history took place in Charleston, so often this is the only SC city I can remember.

The Newcomers

? Korea is the capital of Japan
The Contenders
11 Central American countries are in South America

Those are two different continents, although you could argue that the whole of America could count as one continent, eh anyway you get my point

12 The Statue of Liberty is in New York

Actually, NO. I love geography and liberty island is split between New York and new jersey. this is due to a complicated process, but while the gift shop, museum and food court are in New Jersey, The statue of liberty is, in fact, in new york. now, liberty island is on New Jerseys half of the water, but NJ and NY agreed long ago that all original land was NY any land that came out of the water and on to the island was NJ. therefore, since lady liberty was there in the first place, she is in NY.

I didn't know that but that's not necessarily dumb. Like do you know which Indian state the Taj Mahal is? Pretty much the same thing.

Geographically, the Statue of Liberty falls under New Jersey's borders.

This is one I didn't know, wow.

13 Maine is the easternmost U.S. state

While yes, Maine is the Easternmost of the lower 48, it isn't the Easternmost of the whole US. Alaska leans so far west actually passes the prime meridian and is partly in the Eastern Hemisphere.

It depends on how you interpret the International Date Line.

14 Rangoon is the capital of Myanmar

Rangoon isn't the capital of Myanmar ( I think it's a major city).
The capital is Naypiydaw.

Naypyidaw is the capital, Rangoon is just the biggest city, and while it used to be a capital it isn't anymore since 2006

15 Europe is a country

Really? UK, France, Sweden, Western Russia, Lithuania and many more are one united country?

European here, every European country are different from each other.

Again, it's a continent.

16 Shanghai is the capital of China

Biggest city, but not the capital.

17 Australia is an island

Technically it consists of a few islands, so that technically makes it an archipelago. The continent it's located in is Oceania

18 Jamaica is in Africa

Why do you think that it looks like it's in Africa?

19 The Philippines is part of Oceania/Australia

The Philippines is officially part of Southeast Asia, and is about 500 miles off the coast of China. Indonesia, however, is partially in Oceania/Australia because it takes up half of New Guinea.

Indonesia is more closer to Australia than Philippines...

20 The Las Vegas Strip is in Las Vegas
21 Rio de Janeiro is the capital of Brazil
22 Sydney is the capital of Australia

Sydney is the largest city of Australia, but Canberra is the capital city of Australia.

This should be much higher. It's a very common misconception.

It's actually pretty annoying when someone says this...

Bro like google it

23 Austria and Australia are the same

It's funny because the accents from these two countries couldn't be more different.

Vienna isn't the capital of Australia.
Canberra isn't the capital of Austria.

Austria =/=Australia

People get confused by this.

I bet Australia just copied and pasted Austria's name but added a few letters so nobody would know

24 Japan is the capital of China

I know this sounds stupid, but I actually knew someone who legitimately thought this.
It was in Year 8.
And she would have been 12 or 13.

When I was little, I thought it was the other way around (I thought China was the capital of Japan).

The Japanese and Chinese would get mad at you.

Beijing is China's capital.

25 England, Britain, and the UK are the same

Definitely not. The UK is United Kingdom between countries like Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland AND England. Britain is just the island that consists of Scotland, Wales and England.

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