Top 10 Largest Archipelagos In The World – You must have heard the word Archipelago before and you don’t know what it means, seeing this topic will definitely get you excited as you are about to learn about something new. The question still stands, what is Archipelago? An Archipelago is a chain of Islands, sometimes it’s a sea containing a scattered group of islands. These Islands may either be found near a large landmass or in the middle of an Ocean.
Archipelagos are often found during Volcanic eruption which is formed by subduction zones or hotspot, most times they are also caused by erosion, land elevation. Islands that form Archipelago are referred to like three things they are either called Continental Fragments, Continental Islands, and Oceanic Islands.
An archipelago is formed from the Italian word Archi, meaning chief or principal, and the Greek word Pelagius, meaning gulf, pool, or pond. Continental Archipelago are sets of Islands which are formed close to the coast of a continent and they are known as Continental Archipelago when they form part of the continental shelf, while in the case of Oceanic Island they are mainly of volcanic origin and they are widely separated from any adjacent continent; Continental Fragments are land masses which have separated from a continental mass due to tectonic displacement. This article we are going to give you information about the Top 10 largest Archipelago in the world, trust me when I say you will enjoy reading this.
Top 10 Largest Archipelagos In The World 2020
The Norwegian Archipelago is located in Norway and it’s the largest Archipelago in the world. This Archipelago which has at least 240,000 Islands amazing right. The Norwegian Archipelago has many activities to offer like sailing, kayaking, bird watching, whale safaris, and many others. In this group of the Norwegian Archipelago is the Svalbard archipelago, this is located roughly in the midway point between Norway and the North Pole, in the Arctic Ocean. The Islands in this group ranges from 74° to 81° north latitude, and from 10° to 35° east longitude.
The largest island is Spitsbergen, followed by Nordaustlandet and Edgeøya, you should know that this archipelago is not part of the Norwegian county but forms an unincorporated area, this area is administered by a Governor which is appointed by the Norwegian government. The Islands were first used as a Whaling base for the Danish empire as the Dano Norwegians travelled north in the 17th and 18th century in search of whale fat.
In the 20th century, they abandoned the search for whale fat and coal mining began which allowed several permanent communities to be established. Svalbard is located north of the arctic circle, the island experiences midnight sun in summer and polar night in winter, At 74° north, the midnight sun lasts 99 days and polar night 84 days while at 81° the midnight sun lasts for 141 days while the Polar nights last for 128 days. 30% of Svalbard is a barren rock, 10% is vegetated while 60% is glacial ice.
Svalbard has a little population of about 2,267 people, houses are being built and the majority of the people there are Christians, there are churches for worship over there, which is the Catholic Church, there are few Muslims over there but there is no mosque. Longyearbyen is the largest settlement on the Archipelago which is the seat of the governor and the only town to be incorporated. This town has a hospital, schools, secondary and primary with a university education, market places, cinemas, bus stations, libraries, culture centres, hotels, and even a bank. This town has a newspaper that is being published weekly and only a small fraction of mining is being done over there.
This is the second-largest archipelago in the world with 40,000 islands and islets. This Archipelago is located in Finland in the Baltic Sea, this is the midway point between the Gulf of Finland and the Gulf of Bothnia.
Many of the islands in the Archipelago sea are very small the largest are the Aland island, this island is connected by ferries and bridges for easy movement to and fro. The total surface area of the Archipelago sea is 8,300 square kilometres which 2,000 square kilometers is made up of land, the archipelago sea is divided into the inner and outer archipelago.
Like we said the Aland is the largest island on the Archipelago sea which roughly makes it having 27,000 inhabitants while the rest lives on the other island. Throughout the history of the Archipelago Sea, the island population has been on the increase and decrease.
The Archipelago sea having a smaller island which was not inhabitable by humans, in the 16th century the population of the island increased but after that period war came, pestilence and there was a declining rate in population, during the 19th century, the population increased again and people went about developing new fishing methods for their survival due to rapid urbanization in the 20th century the population declined again and many smaller islands became completely uninhabited.
3. Canadian Arctic Archipelago
Making the 3rd largest on the list is the Canadian Arctic archipelago, it is located in the Northern region of Canada and it consists of 36,563. Most of these Islands make up a province called the Nunavut Province and a smaller area of the Northwest Territories. This island has 14,000 inhabitants and the largest settlement is the Nunavut with a population figure of 6,184.
The Canadian Arctic archipelago covers an area of 1,424,500 km2, 94 of the islands in this archipelago are being referred to as major islands as they cover more than 130km2, the climate of the islands is arctic and the terrain consists of tundra except in areas where there are high mountains. Some of these Islands are closer to Greenland than Canada, are surrounded by the Hudson Bay, Arctic Ocean, and the Beaufort Sea.
The Stockholm Archipelago consists of 28,945 islands is the largest archipelago in Sweden and the second largest in the Baltic sea. This archipelago is a joint valley landscape that has been shaped, the island rises about three millimeters each year, in the year 1719 the archipelago had an estimated population of 2,900, but presently today is among one of the most visited archipelagoes in the world and also a sight for tourist attractions and holiday ground.
In the early days, the inhabitants of the archipelago were mostly fishermen and farmers, many fishermen lived in the outer islands for a long time because of the long distance to their houses from that point. Fishing and farming lasted for about 1950–1955 before the war broke out and people moved into the cities to look for jobs and stay over there.
This Archipelago is located between the Indian and Pacific Oceans, it has 18,306 islands as reported by the National Institute of Aeronautics. This archipelago spans almost 2 million square kilometers between Asia and Australia and many of its islands are still inhabited. Some of the islands are used for recreational activities.
The Smaland archipelago is located in Sweden, it consists of 12,740 islands. This archipelago does not have many inhabitants, but it has been designed for the holiday or sports activities, oftentimes it is referred to as a small kingdom, pork, barley, and potato sausage with pickled beetroot and dilled potatoes is a classic Småland dish.
In Smaland they have the kingdom of crustal and the kingdom of furniture, they have been making famous glass in that part of Småland since 1742 and this kingdom spreads across four municipalities, 13 glassworks and studios, some 20 hotels and all of it revolves around the glass.
This archipelago is located in Sweden, you should know that Sweden has lots of archipelago due to its land types and sizes. Located in the Baltic Sea and it consists of 9, 722 islands. This Archie is a must to visit, it is one of the largest and one of the most beautiful sets of Islands together.
8. Ostergotland Archipelago
Located in Sweden it contains 8,888 islands. This island measures more than 60 kilometers from the North to South and Five kilometers from West to East, with regular schedule boats they move around in the islands.
9. Philippine Archipelago
The Philippine Archipelago which consists of 7,641 islands is among the top 10 largest archipelagos in the world. This archipelago is having a total land area of 300,000 square kilometers and it is divided into three islands group which are Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
The Kvarken Archipelago consists of 6,500 islands, it is the narrow region in the Gulf of Bothnia separating the Bothnia bay. In the year 2006, part of the Kvarken Archipelago was added as an extension to the World Heritage Site of the High Coast.
BRITISH ISLES: The British Isles contains 6,289 islands, have a total area of about 315,159 km, and a population of 72 million people which includes two sovereign states. The oldest rocks on this island are in the northwest of Scotland, Ireland, and North Wales and are 2.7 billion years old.
11. Sodermanland Archipelago
This Archipelago contains 5,371 islands, located in Sweden in the Baltic Sea and it is connected to the Stockholm Archipelago in the north and to the Ostergothland Archipelago in the south.
This article has given you information about the largest archipelago in the world, these places should be a must to visit whenever you are travelling to any of these countries.
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