What Countries Are Transcontinental?

What Countries Are Transcontinental?

When it comes to geography, people tend to like answers that are definitive and clear cut. Unfortunately, that is not often the case in this particular field. Most can’t even agree on a definition of what is a continent. This complicates any effort to decide what countries are transcontinental, leading people to argue about what should and should not count.

In this post, we’ll try to shed some light on the topic. We’ll provide a list of transcontinental countries, breaking them down into groups based on a what makes them transcontinental.

What Countries Are Transcontinental?

While many countries have land on other continents, two stand out as definitively falling into two continents.

Russia

Russia spans across the northern portion of Eurasia. It is considered both a country of Europe, and a country of Asia.

Further reading: Is Russia in Europe or Asia?

Turkey

Like Russia, Turkey is also a country of Europe and Asia. Traditionally, Turkey has been viewed as a crossroads between the two continents.

Further reading: Is Turkey in Europe or Asia?

Other Countries on More Than One Continent

Countries on More Than One Continent.

In addition to Russia and Turkey, there are other countries that are definitely transcontinental. However, the countries included in this list are typically only considered countries of one continent.

Egypt

Egypt is considered a country of Africa only, but they do have land that spans into the Middle East (Asia) via the Sinai Peninsula.

Further reading: Is Egypt Part of Africa or Asia?

France

France has many overseas regions that are considered integral parts of the country. Among them are French Guiana, in South America, Guadeloupe and Martinique in the Caribbean (North America), and Mayotte and Réunion in the Indian Ocean (Africa).

Further reading: What Countries Border France?

Indonesia

The majority of Indonesia is in Asia, but the country does have two provinces on the Island of New Guinea, which is part of Oceania.

Further reading: What Continent is Indonesia In?

United States

All 50 U.S. states are in North America, except for one. Hawaii, which is located way out there in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, is typically considered part of Oceania.

Border Dependent Transcontinental Countries

Transcontinental Countries.

Now things start to get a little tricky. Remember that continents, and continental borders, are largely cultural constructs. There is no one, definitive border between Europe and Asia, for example – different sources will draw it at different points. Arguments can be made for each of the following countries as being transcontinental, though whether or not they are depends on where the borders between continents are drawn.

Armenia

Considered part of Asia, but may span into Europe.

Further reading: Where Is Armenia?

Azerbaijan

Considered part of Asia, but may span into Europe.

Colombia

Considered part of South America, but may span into North America.

Cyprus

Considered part of Europe, but may span into Asia.

Further reading: Is Cyprus in Europe or Asia?

Georgia

Considered part of Asia, but may span into Europe.

Iceland

Considered part of Europe, but may span into North America

Kazakhstan

Considered part of Asia, but may span into Europe.

Further reading: Is Kazakhstan Part of Asia or Europe?

Panama

Considered part of North America, but may span into South America.

Further reading: Where Is Panama?

Countries With Overseas Territories on Different Continents

Territories on Different Continents.

Lastly, we come to countries that have overseas territories that fall into other continents. Unless the territory is an integral part of the country (like French Guiana is to France or Hawaii is to the U.S.), they usually are not enough to classify a country as “transcontinental”. However, much like with border disputed transcontinental countries, arguments could also be made for these countries as well.

Chile

Easter Island belongs to Chile, and is in Oceania.

Denmark

Greenland is in North America.

Further reading: What Is Greenland?

Norway

Norway has territories off Antarctica.

Greece

The Dodecanese Islands are in Asia.

Italy

Italy’s Pelagie Islands are in Africa.

Japan

The Bonin Islands are controlled by Japan, and are in Oceania.

Netherlands

Sint Maarten, Curaçao, and Aruba are in the Caribbean between North and South America.

Portugal

Madeira is in Africa, and the Azores are sometimes considered part of North America.

Further reading: What Is Portugal?

Spain

Ceuta, Melilla, the Canary Islands, and other territories are in Africa.

United Kingdom

The UK has many dependent territories throughout the world.

Further reading: What Is the United Kingdom?

Venezuela

Venezuela’s Isla Aves are in North America.

Further reading: What Is Venezuela?

Yemen

The island of Socotra is sometimes considered part of Africa.

This wraps up our list of transcontinental countries. While there are few definitive answers here, hopefully this list at least clarified the question a bit more.


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Mark Heald
About Mark Heald 175 Articles
Mark Heald is the Managing Editor of Sporcle.com. He enjoys spending time with his family, traveling, and bemoaning the fact the Sonics left Seattle.