By definition, this region covers Central and Northern America, including the Caribbean. The variations in this northern part of the Western Hemisphere are enormous. As a result, we have a very fascinating part of the world to travel in. Unfortunately, I have paid very few visits to North America. I have in fact only been to three of 23 independent countries: Canada, United States and Cuba.
In addition, my visits were concentrated in time and space. One week in New York City and four days in the big cities in eastern Canada. The big exception was my tour of Cuba. Sure, I did get many impressions from, say, New York, but the Big Apple is far from average North America. Most of my impressions of the United States and Canada are prejudiced, based on meeting Americans abroad, and not least reading about the countries, watching movies and so on. The rest of the Caribbean is a recurring element on my annual bucket lists.
There are 23 independent countries in this world region, of which I have visited the three listed above. Click the links to access all posts from each country.
The rest are, in addition to Mexico in the north, situated in two sub-regions – continental Central America (seven countries) and the Caribbean island states (12).
I have not been to Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Costa Rica, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago.
There are also 27 dependencies and other areas, ranging in size from Greenland to tiny islands like Sint Eustatius.
Map of North America. Sandalsand has been to countries marked with a green colour, and not the yellow countries. (Map source: Wikimedia Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported (user Bosonic dressing))
Posts from North America
This is a collection of pictures from Canada, the result of a trip in 2016 to the major cities in the eastern part of the country. Consult the map...
The capital of Canada attracts all visitors with splendid architecture, a beautiful river, world-class museums, a World Heritage Site, and the...
A canal built with the primary purpose of keeping the United States out of Canada. The UNESCO World Heritage List includes more than a thousand...
There's an almost royal view of the mighty Saint Lawrence when you stand on the terrace in front of the Chateau Frontenac. The lower town, the upper...
Québec City is so French, in architecture, language and traditions that you feel you have arrived in Europe. The UNESCO World Heritage List includes...
Combining colonial architectural heritage with modern high-rises is not always easy. Montreal succeeds in offering visitors a lot of sights and...
My only picture gallery from the United States is from a visit to New York. Check out all United States entries. You will find this picture gallery...
On a sunny morning we had a great walk on Manhattan, parallel to the Hudson River. Join us for this walk on the abandoned elevated railway line...
A walk in Central Park is good meditation and can also be good exercise. There is much to see and enjoy, like the video clips and still images in...
A short video from a great walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, direction Manhattan. The walk across the bridge was part of a much longer walk that...
A short video from a ride with the Statue Cruises ferry to Liberty Island, a walk around and up inside the statue. The statue is a World Heritage...
What a pleasant surprise. Once a ghetto, yet with historical monuments, profound religious expressions and a jazzy atmosphere. ...
Traveling in Europe made me understand that America has an island mentality: No one exists except us. There’s a whole other world out there, but most Americans – all they know is America, the marketing plan. (will.i.am)
A fact sheet
Its first human populations reached North America during the last glacial period, via crossing the Bering land bridge approximately 40,000 to 17,000 years ago. This is Wikipedia’s introduction to this region.
Map and numbers
- Area: 24,709,000 km2
- Population: 579,024,000 (2016)
- Population density: 22.9/km2
- Nominal GDP: $21.2 trillion (2016)
- PPP GDP: $24.4 trillion (2016)
- Per capita GDP: $41,830 (2016)
- Countries: 23 sovereign states
- Dependencies: 23 non-sovereign territories
North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all within the Western Hemisphere. Some considers it to be the northern subcontinent of the Americas. It borders to the north the Arctic Ocean, to the east the Atlantic Ocean, to the west and south the Pacific Ocean, and to the southeast South America and the Caribbean Sea.
North America covers an area of about 24,709,000 square kilometers (9,540,000 square miles), about 16.5% of the earth’s land area and about 4.8% of its total surface. This is the third largest continent by area, after Asia and Africa, and the fourth by population after Asia, Africa, and Europe. In 2013, its population was estimated at nearly 565 million people in 23 independent states, or about 7.5% of the world’s population, if nearby islands (most notably the Caribbean) are included.
Its first human populations reached North America during the last glacial period, via crossing the Bering land bridge approximately 40,000 to 17,000 years ago. The so-called Paleo-Indian period lasted until about 10,000 years ago (the beginning of the Archaic or Meso-Indian period). The Classic stage spans roughly the 6th to 13th centuries. What is called the Pre-Columbian era ended in 1492, and the transatlantic migrations—the arrival of European settlers during the Age of Discovery and the Early Modern period. Present-day cultural and ethnic patterns reflect different kinds of interactions between European colonists, indigenous peoples, African slaves and their descendants.
European influences are strongest in the northern parts of the continent while indigenous and African influences are relatively stronger in the south. Because of the history of colonialism, most North Americans speak English, Spanish or French and societies and states commonly reflect Western traditions.