HOW STUFF WORKS
QUIZZES

FOLLOW US
How Much Do You Know About Geography of the Western Hemisphere?
by Isadora Teich

The Western Hemisphere is everything that, on your globe, appears on the left of the Greenwich Meridian. That means it's the western part of western Europe, plus both Americas, and of course an awful lot of island nations and territories in both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The topography of these two-and-a-half continents includes high mountains, deep valleys, and the biggest crater on the planet (currently filled with ocean).

The Western Hemisphere includes 8% of Earth's total surface area, but 28.4% of its land area. However thanks to its large oceans, it is far less populated than its eastern counterpart, with only 18% of humanity living there. Still, that 18% has to contend with some of the greatest variety in climates and topography anywhere on Earth, with the north-south axis of the landmasses requiring a more adaptable culture that had to change its farming techniques to cope with every time it sought a new place to live. 

From the Panama Canal to the Rockies to the Amazon rainforest to some of the driest farmland on the planet, the Western Hemisphere is full of challenges and opportunities. What this means is that the history of the hemisphere has been shaped by, well, its literal shape - and that in turn means that knowing the geography is key to understanding it. Let's see how you fare in a Western Hemisphere geographic challenge!


Read More
Scroll to Begin Quiz

ABOUT HOWSTUFFWORKS

How much do you know about how car engines work? And how much do you know about how the English language works? And what about how guns work? How much do you know? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks is about more than providing great answers about how the world works. We are also here to bring joy to your day with fun quizzes, compelling photography and fascinating listicles. Some of our content is about how stuff works. Some is about how much you know about how stuff works. And some is just for fun! Because, well, did you know that having fun is an important part of how your brain works? Well, it is! So keep reading!