Countries with the Longest Coastlines

We compiled a list of the 20 countries with the longest coastlines. How many can you name?
Full list, based on original research by the Quizmaster
Includes overseas regions, dependencies, and autonomous areas
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: April 19, 2019
First submittedAugust 16, 2010
Times taken207,404
Rating4.89
4:00
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Kilometers
Country
137,000
Canada
73,100
Russia
69,500
United States
52,500
Indonesia
48,800
Denmark
(includes Greenland)
34,100
Australia
31,300
Chile
Kilometers
Country
27,400
Norway
18,700
Brazil
17,300
Philippines
16,800
China
16,700
United Kingdom
15,600
Mexico
15,500
Japan
Kilometers
Country
12,200
France
11,200
Papua New Guinea
11,000
India
10,300
New Zealand
9,480
Greece
6,520
Sweden
+16
Level ∞
Apr 18, 2019
Throughout the years, many people pointed out inaccuracies in our original source. I finally decided to calculate the coastline myself. It is now my belief that the CIA World Factbook data is deeply flawed, and that my new original source is the most accurate compilation of country coastlines available anywhere.
+3
Level 82
Apr 18, 2019
great quiz. well done quizmaster. From the alternative source (wiki) it looks like Denmark would just about make the top 20 even without Greenland. Is the same true on your list?
+1
Level 77
Apr 19, 2019
No, Denmark proper has 5,100 (see European coastlines quiz)
+2
Level 51
Aug 28, 2020
Tbh, because of the coastline paradox, all coastline measurements are 'flawed', since it always becomes infinite in the end.
+1
Level 51
Oct 12, 2020
Exactly, xenobiologista! It's all a matter of scale.
+5
Level 75
Apr 23, 2019
Bravo! Thank you for your diligence on this. Agreed about that "Factbook." It should come with a decoder ring and box of cereal :P
+2
Level 49
May 13, 2019
Thanks for the perseverance in creating this! Great quiz.
+4
Level 56
Dec 18, 2019
Given the coastline paradox, I don't think there is such a thing as 'most accurate'.
+2
Level 54
Apr 27, 2020
Although you can never be completely accurate, some estimates are certainly more accurate than others (e.g. if I say the coastline of Canada is 1 mile that is very inaccurate) so there must be a most accurate measure.
+1
Level 23
Oct 2, 2020
If you measure all the countries the same, you can give a valid measurement. You can't say "the coastline is xkm long" but you can say "the coastline of x is larger than the coastline of y", providing you use the same measurement factors.
+2
Level 29
Mar 13, 2020
Wait, in your calculation, Cuba has more coastline then Madagascar. So Cuba is bigger than Madagascar ??
+8
Level 35
Mar 17, 2020
that is absolutely not what that means
+4
Level 24
Jun 30, 2020
why argentina is not included
+1
Level 21
Oct 26, 2020
Canada has a coastline equal to more than 3 times the circumference of the Earth?? Is this accurate?
+1
Level 23
Oct 28, 2020
Canada has, like, a lot of islands, man
+5
Level 80
Apr 19, 2019
Italy and Croatia both not included in the new source? and wasn't Turkey on here before, too?
+1
Level 34
Jan 5, 2020
Italy needs to be included the coastline is long
+1
Level 62
May 1, 2020
Italy is 22nd, so it doesn't make it.
+1
Level 72
Apr 27, 2019
That's a remarkably low estimate for New Zealand. Where did that come from?
+7
Level 34
May 13, 2019
Madagascar?
+2
Level 28
May 13, 2019
apparently not when its bigger than the uk and has lots of islands
+1
Level 21
Oct 26, 2020
The U.K. has overseas possessions that are islands is probably why.
+1
Level 28
May 13, 2019
good quiz. i got them all, but i didnt get denmark till the very end.
+6
Level 37
May 13, 2019
The coastline paradox makes it virtually impossible to accurately measure a country's coastline.
+2
Level 67
May 24, 2019
how is it impossible to measure a coastline?? you just follow the edges, the coastline...
+6
Level 59
Jun 4, 2019
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFjq8PX6F7I
+1
Level 56
Mar 11, 2020
I would have recommended the same video if I was earlier than you. Great explanation by RLL.
+5
Level 45
May 13, 2019
I only missed Papua New Guinea.
+2
Level 43
May 26, 2019
Same here
+2
Level 29
May 13, 2019
the uk, france, philippines, and greece make sence uk and france have a bunch of islands and a large part of greece is islands so is the philippines.
+3
Level 56
May 13, 2019
PNG for the win
+1
Level 43
May 15, 2019
why is australia's coastline so small. Greeland has a quarter of the area but a much bigger coastline; wtf?
+3
Level 67
May 24, 2019
coastline isnt as the crow flies, but the actual coastline, so every inlet and tiny island is measured.
+2
Level 56
Mar 11, 2020
Fjords and Coastline Paradox
+5
Level 67
May 24, 2019
How is greece the lowest guessed in a quiz about coastlines??
+1
Level 43
May 26, 2019
Idk
+1
Level 78
Oct 31, 2019
I skipped right over it. Thought of Italy, gave Greece a miss, and went straight to Turkey. :-( Only one I missed.
+2
Level 61
Jun 6, 2019
Thought some more of the islands nations would appear like Micronesia, Solomon Islands or Marshall Islands. Still got them all, but took some thinking.
+1
Level 50
Jun 11, 2019
Got 5 points on my first go. Quite easy, if I say so myself :P
+1
Level 56
Jul 14, 2019
Forgot France😀
+2
Level 44
Jul 19, 2019
Woaw How can Sweden beat Argentina
+6
Level 65
Jul 23, 2019
Argentina isn’t on the list?
+1
Level 32
Oct 15, 2020
same
+4
Level 42
Oct 6, 2019
No Madagascar?
+1
Level 47
Oct 11, 2019
The wikipedia article https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_length_of_coastline is very interesting with its two lists from different sources. the numbers are totally different. For example, Finland is 70th on one list with 1700 km and 10th on the other with 30000+.
+3
Level 56
Dec 29, 2019
My guess (based on being a Finnish person, not an online source). The first one, with 1700km, is calculating only the coastline of the mainland, and possibly even that one by cutting some corners. The 30000+ includes coasts of all the islands, of which there are a LOT.
+1
Level 50
Oct 29, 2019
Italy??
+1
Level 54
Dec 21, 2019
I got 19 and forgot Russia I got Papua New Guinea and Philippines but forgot Russia. How could I forget it's the biggest country in the world.
+2
Level 48
Feb 25, 2020
There is no accurate way to measure coastline arbitrarily well from a map. Because of that, many paradoxes will be inevitable. How is Madagascar absent, when Papua New Guinea is present, for example? One would think Argentina or South Africa surely have as much coastline as Sweden, but it's a weird thing, measuring length of a curve that doesn't have statically defined position or curvature. Anyway, fun quiz nonetheless.
+1
Level 52
Apr 2, 2020
Missed Sweden! Got Norway, tried Finland, didn't get anything, decided not to try Sweden, and then I was stuck with 19/20.
+1
Level 39
Apr 21, 2020
That Norway should have not just more coastline than Brazil but SO MUCH more is really surprising. Very interesting quiz!
+1
Level 31
Apr 24, 2020
Someone please explain how I got all of them lol. I mean I guess i’m Filipino but oh well
+1
Level 56
May 14, 2020
Really suspect Sweden being in this list!
+1
Level 50
Jul 19, 2020
Forgot India and I live here 😦
+1
Level 25
Sep 23, 2020
Surprised to see that turkey is not in list but Greece is
+1
Level 43
Oct 24, 2020
I got every single country except the USA and I live in the country right beside it. Help me lol
+1
Level 21
Oct 26, 2020
Quite amazing what a difference having many islands makes to ‘distance’ of a coastline. Countries that are apparently pretty small have huge coastlines while much larger nations like Saudi Arabia, which despite bordering both the Red and Arabian seas has a smaller coastline even though it looks pretty big on a map.