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Sanna Marin’s Biography

Sanna Marin has been selected as the next Prime Minister of Finland. She will be the youngest Prime Minister of the world at the age of just 34.

Sanna Marin: The youngest PM of the World
Sanna Marin: The youngest PM of the World

Personal details about Sanna Marin

Full Name: Sanna Mirella Marin

Date of Birth: 16 November 1985 (age 34)

Place of Birth: Helsinki, Finland

Political party: Social Democratic Party

Spouse(s): Markus Räikkönen

Children: 1

Education: Graduated, Bachelor of Administrative Sciences in 2012. (University of Tampere) 

Personal life of Sanna Marin

Sanna Marin is the child of same-sex parents. She is married to her long-time boyfriend Markus Räikkönen. Sanna is a mother of one child also.

sanna-with husband
(Sanna with her husband)

The Political career of Sanna Marin

Sanna Marin has completed her graduation in Bachelor of Administrative Sciences from the University of Tampere in 2012.

served as the chairperson of the City Council from 2013 to 2017. The career of Sanna got a boost in 2014 when she was elected second deputy chairperson of the Social Democratic Party.

Sanna Marin was elected to the Parliament of Finland in 2015 and repeated the same in June 2019 and became the Minister of Transport and Communications.

The current Prime Minister Antti Rinne has resigned from the post because he could not prove his majority in the parliament.

Rinne’s resignation prompted the Social Democratic party to make the next government with the help of other parties I.e. Center Party, the Greens, the Left Alliance and the Swedish People’s Party.

Finland’s Social Democrats has elected 34-year-old Sanna Marin to lead the coalition government. So she is all set to become the youngest Prime Minister of Finland. She would also be the country’s third female Prime Minister ever.

Marin would surpass the record of Ukraine’s Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk, who is currently 35.

Worth to mention that the other youngest Prime Minister/Head of the world includes; Oleksiy Honcharuk (35) of Ukraine, Kim Jong-un (35) of North Korea and Jacinda Ardern (39) of New Zealand.

So this the important information about the world’s youngest Prime Minister Sanna Marin. To read such more articles click on the link given below.

Deepest Part of the Ocean

The Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench is the deepest known location in Earth’s oceans.

Mariana Trench location map

Mariana Trench map: Map showing the geographic location of the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean. Image from the CIA Factbook.

Measuring the Greatest Ocean Depth

The Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench is the deepest known point in Earth’s oceans. In 2010 the United States Center for Coastal & Ocean Mapping measured the depth of the Challenger Deep at 10,994 meters (36,070 feet) below sea level with an estimated vertical accuracy of ± 40 meters. If Mount Everest, the highest mountain on Earth, were placed at this location it would be covered by over one mile of water.

The first depth measurements in the Mariana Trench were made by the British survey ship HMS Challenger, which was used by the Royal Navy in 1875 to conduct research in the trench. The greatest depth that they recorded at that time was 8,184 meters (26,850 feet).

In 1951, another Royal Navy vessel, also named the “HMS Challenger,” returned to the area for additional measurements. They discovered an even deeper location with a depth of 10,900 meters (35,760 feet) determined by echo sounding. The Challenger Deep was named after the Royal Navy vessel that made these measurements.

In 2009, sonar mapping done by researchers aboard the RV Kilo Moana, operated by the University of Hawaii, determined the depth to be 10,971 meters (35,994 feet) with a potential error of ± 22 meters. The most recent measurement, done in 2010, is the 10,994 meter ( ± 40 meter accuracy) depth reported at the top of this article, measured by the United States Center for Coastal & Ocean Mapping.

Map of the Challenger Deep

Challenger Deep map: Map showing the location of the Challenger Deep on the southern end of the Mariana Trench, south of Guam. NOAA image modified by Kmusser and used here under a GNU Free Document License.

Exploring the Challenger Deep

The Challenger Deep was first explored by humans when Jacques Piccard and Don Walsh descended in the Trieste bathyscaphe in 1960. They reached a depth of 10,916 meters (35,814 feet).

In 2009 researchers from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution completed the deepest dive by an unmanned robotic vehicle in the Challenger Deep. Their Nereus robotic vehicle reached a depth of 10,902 meters.

ocean trench

Why is the ocean so deep here?

The Mariana Trench is located at a convergent plate boundary. Here two converging plates of oceanic lithosphere collide with one another. At this collision point, one of the plates descends into the mantle. At the line of contact between the two plates, the downward flexure forms a trough known as an ocean trench. An example of an ocean trench is shown in the diagram. Ocean trenches form some of the deepest locations in Earth’s oceans.

map of plate movement to form the Mariana Trench

Mariana Trench earthquake: Map showing the location of the Challenger Deep, the epicenter of an April, 2016 earthquake, and the relative movement directions of the Pacific and Philippine Plates. USGS map with annotations by

underwater volcanic vent

Underwater volcanic vent: As the Pacific Plate is pushed into the mantle and heated, water in the sediment is volatilized, and gases are liberated as the basalt of the plate melts. These gases migrate to the surface to form a number of volcanic vents on the ocean floor. This photo shows gases escaping and bubbles moving towards the surface, expanding as they ascend. NOAA image.

Earthquakes in the Mariana Trench

The Mariana Trench occurs along a plate boundary between the Philippine Plate and the Pacific Plate. The Pacific Plate is on the eastern and southern side of this boundary, and the Philippine Plate is on the western and northern side of this boundary.

Both of these plates are moving in a northwesterly direction, but the Pacific Plate is moving faster than the Philippine Plate. The motion of these plates produces a convergent plate boundary because the greater speed of the Pacific Plate is causing it to collide into the Philippine Plate. This collision produces a subduction zone at the Mariana Trench as the Pacific Plate descends into the mantle and under the Philippine Plate.

This collision occurs at variable speeds along the curving boundary of the plates, but the average relative motion is in the range of tens of millimeters per year. Recurrent earthquakes occur along this plate boundary because the Pacific Plate’s descent into the mantle is not smooth and uniform. Instead, the plates are usually stuck with pressure accumulating, but with sudden slips as the plates move a few millimeters to a few meters at a time. When the plates slip, vibrations are produced, and those vibrations travel through Earth’s crust as earthquake waves.

As the Pacific Plate descends into the mantle, it is heated by friction and the geothermal gradient. At a depth of approximately 100 miles, the rocks have been heated to a point where some minerals begin to melt. This melting produces magma that rises towards the surface because of its lower density. As the magma reaches the surface, volcanic eruptions are produced. These eruptions have formed the Mariana Island Arc.

Highest Mountain in the World

Mount Everest - Highest Altitude

Highest Altitude: An altitude of 8,850 meters (29,035 feet) above sea level makes Mount Everest the mountain on Earth with the highest altitude. “Highest altitude” means that it has the highest elevation above mean sea level.

Mount Everest: Highest Altitude

Almost everyone calls Mount Everest “the highest mountain in the world,” and climbers from everywhere travel to Everest hoping to earn the distinction of climbing the “World’s Highest.”

What does “world’s highest” really mean?

Mount Everest is called the world’s highest mountain because it has the “highest elevation above sea level.” We could also say that it has the “highest altitude.”

The peak of Mount Everest is 8,850 meters (29,035 feet) above sea level. No other mountain on Earth has a higher altitude. However, some mountains might be considered “taller” (with taller being “the total vertical distance between their base and their summit”).

Mount Everest

Everest from Gokyo Ri: A clear-sky view of the Mount Everest summit through a telephoto lens from the summit of Gokyo Ri. Image copyright iStockphoto / Grazyna Niedzieska.

What does tallest mountain mean?

Tallest Mountain: The base of Mauna Kea is about 6000 meters below sea level, and the summit is about 4000 meters above sea level. The distance between the foot of the mountain and the summit is about 10,000 meters. This makes Mauna Kea the “tallest” mountain in the world.

Mauna Kea from Space

Snow in Hawaii? Satellite view of the island of Hawaii. The two snow caps are Mauna Loa (center) and Mauna Kea (to the north). Image by NASA.

Mauna Kea: Tallest Mountain

Mauna Kea has an altitude of 4,205 meters (13,796 feet) – much lower than Mount Everest. However, Mauna Kea is an island, and if the distance from the bottom of the nearby Pacific Ocean floor to the peak of the island is measured, then Mauna Kea is “taller” than Mount Everest.

Mauna Kea is over 10,000 meters tall compared to 8,850 meters for Mount Everest – making it the “world’s tallest mountain.”

Mauna Kea - Tallest Mountain

Astronomical Observatories on Mauna Kea: The summit of Mauna Kea holds other distinctions. In addition to being the summit of the world’s “tallest” mountain, it is also the home of the world’s largest astronomical observatory. At an elevation of nearly 14,000 feet above sea level, the observatory is above 40% of Earth’s atmosphere. The atmosphere above the mountain is extremely dry and almost cloud-free. This makes it an ideal location for an observatory. And, yes, that is snow on the ground in Hawaii – the altitude is high enough and cold enough to accumulate snow. Photo copyright iStockphoto / GeorgeBurba.

Highest Mountain Above Earth's Center

Highest Above Earth’s Center: The Earth does not have the shape of a perfect sphere. Instead, its diameter is greatest near the equator. In the diagram above, the gray dashed line is a perfect circle, and the solid blue line represents the shape of the earth (exaggerated a bit to make its departure from spherical obvious). Chimborazo is located near the equator where Earth’s diameter is greatest. This makes the summit of Chimborazo the highest point above the center of the Earth.

Highest Above Earth’s Center

Chimborazo in Ecuador has an altitude of 6,310 meters (20,703 feet). Mount Everest has a higher altitude, and Mauna Kea is “taller.” However, Chimborazo has the distinction of being the “highest mountain above Earth’s center.”

This is because Earth is not a sphere – it is an oblate spheroid. As an oblate spheroid, Earth is widest at its equator. Chimborazo is just one degree south of the equator. At that location, it is 6,384 kilometers (3,967 miles) above Earth’s center, or about 2 kilometers (about 1.2 miles) farther from Earth’s center than Mount Everest.

Chimborazo - Highest Mountain Above Earth's Center

Snow at the Equator? Photo of Chimborazo mountain, Ecuador. Even though the mountain is very close to the equator, it is high enough to support a year-round snow cap. Image copyright iStockphoto / ache1978.

The World’s Largest Deserts

A map showing the generalized location of Earth’s ten largest deserts and a table of over 20 major deserts.

world desert map

World desert map: This map shows the generalized location of Earth’s ten largest deserts on the basis of surface area. The table at the bottom of this page provides the names, generalized locations, and surface areas of over twenty major deserts. Base map by NOAA.

sand dunes in the Sahara Desert of Libya

Sand dunes in the Sahara Desert of Libya: Most people think of deserts as “sandy” landscapes. That is true part of the time. This is a view of sand dunes in the Sahara Desert of Libya – an area known as the Ubari (or Awbari) Sand Sea. Photo copyright iStockphoto / PatrickPoendl.

What is a Desert?

A desert is a landscape or region that receives very little precipitation – less than 250 mm per year (about ten inches). Approximately 1/3 of Earth’s land surface is a desert. There are four different types of deserts based upon their geographic situation: 1) polar deserts, 2) subtropical deserts, 3) cold winter deserts, and 4) cool coastal deserts. As shown on the map above, deserts occur on all of Earth’s continents.

The Largest Desert

The two largest deserts on Earth are in the polar areas. The Antarctic Polar Desert covers the continent of Antarctica and has a size of about 5.5 million square miles. The second-largest desert is the Arctic Polar Desert. It extends over parts of Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia. It has a surface area of about 5.4 million square miles.

McMurdo Dry Valleys

McMurdo Dry Valleys: The largest deserts on Earth are in the polar regions. This is one of the McMurdo “dry valleys” near Lake Hoare, Antarctica. The Canada Glacier is in the background. Photograph by Peter West, National Science Foundation.

Non-Polar Deserts

The rest of Earth’s deserts are outside of the polar areas. The largest is the Sahara Desert, a subtropical desert in northern Africa. It covers a surface area of about 3.5 million square miles. A list of more than twenty of the largest non-polar deserts can be found below.

Vegetation of the Sonoran Desert in Arizona: Cacti and grasses in Arizona’s Sonoran Desert. Photo copyright iStockphoto / vlynder.

The Desert Environment

When most people think of a desert, they imagine a landscape covered with sand and sand dunes. Although many deserts are sand-covered, most are not. Many desert landscapes are rocky surfaces. They are rocky because any sand-size or smaller particles on the surface are quickly blown away. Rocky deserts are barren wind-swept landscapes.

Most deserts receive so little precipitation that surface streams usually only flow immediately after rainfall – unless the stream has a source of water outside of the desert. Streams that enter a desert usually suffer major water losses before they exit. Some of the water is lost to evaporation. Some is lost to transpiration (taken up by plants and then released to the atmosphere from the plants). And, some is lost to infiltration (water soaking into the ground through the bottom of the stream channel).

Desert Fauna and Flora

The plants and animals that live in a desert must be adapted to the environment. Plants must be very tolerant to intense sun, prolonged periods without precipitation, and have an ability to prevent moisture loss to conditions of severe temperature ranges, dry winds, and low humidity.

Animals must be able to tolerate temperature extremes, temperature ranges, and have an ability to survive with very little water. Many animals adapt to desert conditions by living underground and being active at night.

Major Deserts of the World
NameType of DesertSurface AreaLocation
AntarcticPolar5.5 million mi²Antarctica
ArcticPolar5.4 million mi²Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia
SaharaSubtropical3.5 million mi²Northern Africa
ArabianSubtropical1 million mi²Arabian Peninsula
GobiCold Winter500,000 mi²China and Mongolia
PatagonianCold Winter260,000 mi²Argentina
Great VictoriaSubtropical250,000 mi²Australia
KalahariSubtropical220,000 mi²South Africa, Botswana, Namibia
Great BasinCold Winter190,000 mi²United States
SyrianSubtropical190,000 mi²Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia
ChihuahuanSubtropical175,000 mi²Mexico
Great SandySubtropical150,000 mi²Australia
Kara-KumCold Winter135,000 mi²Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan
Colorado PlateauCold Winter130,000 mi²United States
GibsonSubtropical120,000 mi²Australia
SonoranSubtropical120,000 mi²United States, Mexico
Kyzyl-KumCold Winter115,000 mi²Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan
TaklamakanCold Winter105,000 mi²China
IranianCold Winter100,000 mi²Iran
TharSubtropical75,000 mi²India, Pakistan
SimpsonSubtropical56,000 mi²Australia
MojaveSubtropical54,000 mi²United States
AtacamaCool Coastal54,000 mi²Chile
NamibCool Coastal13,000 mi²Angola, Namibia, South Africa

Biggest Forests In The World


There are numerous beautiful forests in the world, and collectively they cover about one-third of Earth’s total acreage.

These forests provide the oxygen we need to breathe as well as sequester carbon, that confounding climate change catalyst. Forests also protect our world’s water supply: When they disappear, we inevitably get deserts.

Despite these commonalities, the biggest forests in the world are impressively diverse. Each offers its own unique combinations of trees and understory plants. Each is home to a diverse array of animals, fungi, mosses, insects, and people.

These incredible forests produce all sorts of food for us to eat, and provide medicines that have healed humans for centuries.

In other words, forests are really, really cool, which is why so many of us want to explore them when we travel the world. Here’s a look at 20 of the largest forests in the world, each of which deserves a place on any nature lover’s world travel bucket list!


Miombo Woodland, Photo courtesy Graham


The Miombo woodlands cover over 900,000 square miles in central Africa. They’re home to millions of people, and spread across Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Although the region is dominated by the Miombo tree, there are over 300 other species of trees and 8500+ different types of plants. Much of this vegetation goes towards feeding an amazing array of wildlife, including Giraffes, Rhinos, Elephants, and grazing Antelope.

Impressively, much of this massive forest is still intact. But it has recently begun to suffer due to the rise in ranching, agriculture, and charcoal production.

Equally (if not more) concerning is the rise in the illegal poaching of Rhinos and Elephants for their horns and ivory tusks. Luckily, numerous conservationist and activist groups have worked to protect huge areas of these beautiful forests.

Congo Basin Forest, Photo courtesy David Holt via flickr CC 2.0


Home to around 40 million people, the largest forest in Africa covers much of the continent’s central region (approximately 1.4 million square miles of it).

Countries located within its vast basin include Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Zambia.

Widely considered to be the planet’s “second lung” (along with the Amazon), the Congo’s forest holds around 8% of the world’s forest-based carbon. The basin contains many different ecosystems, including several savanna forests, a coastal forest, three large lowland forests, and a swamp forest.

The Congo Basin Forest is home to thousands of unique species of plants and animals. The diverse array of wildlife species– including Elephants, Chimpanzees, Gorillas, Rhinos, and countless others– are beloved around the world, but increasingly endangered. There are also over 2000 species of orchids that are endemic to the basin.

Historians believe the Congo has been inhabited for over 50,000 years, and there are still indigenous tribes here that live hunter-gatherer lifestyles. The forest’s thick canopy of trees towers at around 100 feet, and is generally dense with flora.


20 Biggest Forests - Kinabala National Forest
Mount Kinabalu


On the northern part of the island of Borneo, Kinubalu National Park encompasses an area of roughly 300 square miles. Despite being one of the smaller forests on this list, it’s biodiversity and mix of habitats make it a big deal.

Kinabalu National Park is famous for its namesake mountain, which, at 13,435 feet, is the tallest one between New Guinea and the Himalayas. With elevations ranging from less than 650 feet up to Mount Kinabalu, the park boasts an extremely diverse and distinctive collection of plants and animals, including over 1000 species of orchids.

Habitats in Kinabalu vary from tropical lowlands and hill rainforest to sub-alpine forest, which has an incredible mix of plants found in the Himalayas, Australia, and China. It is a Center of Plant Diversity for Southeast Asia.

Though the park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is thus protected, industrial development has begun to threaten it more in recent years.

20 Biggest Forests - Sundarbans


The world’s biggest mangrove forest, the Sundarbans encompasses around 38,000 square miles of land and water straddling the border of Bangladesh and northern India.

The forest is named after the sundari tree, the most populous in the area. The forest itself only constitutes about 40% of the area of the Sundarbans: Around 50% of it is water, and the rest is comprised of sand dunes and mudflats.

The Sundarbans National Park was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the late 1980s, and three wildlife sanctuaries set up in the Bangladesh part of the Sundarbans were honored in 1997. The entire area is considered a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

This area is famously home to the Bengal Tiger, and is one of the last protected spaces in Bangladesh for them to live. But the mangrove boasts many other notable animal residents as well, including wild boars, Ganges river dolphins, cobras, Indian pythons, and crocodiles. It’s also home to over 250 species of birds.

Sumatra’s Rainforest, Photo courtesy Andrew H.


Sumatra’s largest rainforest is comprised of three national parks: Gunung Leuser National Park, Kerinci Seblat National Park, and Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park. Together, they are home to nearly 10,000 square miles of UNESCO-protected forest.

Sumatra’s rainforests house many rare and endangered species. Noteworthy animals found there include Tigers, Elephants, Orangutans, Clouded Leopards, Sun Bears, and quite a few others.

Additionally, the beautiful forests of Sumatra are still home to numerous nomadic rainforest people who hunt and gather.

Unfortunately, Sumatra’s Rainforest is also among the world’s most endangered forests. In fact, it represents the most rapidly deforested area in the history of the planet. Some estimates suggest that over half of it has been felled in recent years in the name of creating rubber, paper, and palm oil plantations.

Though many NGOs are fighting to save these forests, industrialization and corruption are continuing to prove formidable adversaries.

20 Biggest Forests - Xishuangbanna
Tea Garden in Xishuangbanna


Stretching around 930 square miles (over 80% of which is covered in forest) China’s Xishuangbanna National Nature Reserve has a rare tropical forest ecosystem that includes plenty of virgin forest.

The site was recognized as a UNESCO International Man and Biosphere Reserve in 1993. It has more than 50 rare plant species, and there are several endangered animal species, including Asian elephants, Indo-Chinese tigers, and gibbons.

The climate of Xishuangbanna is very humid. Because the nature reserve is surrounded by mountains, it’s protected from cold north winds and opened to maritime moisture. Annual precipitation fluctuates from 40 to 80 inches a year.

The terrain has lots of hills, with lush, verdant basins between them. It also has many river crossings, namely the Lancang River system.


Daintree Rainforest, Photo courtesy Kimberly Vardeman


The Daintree Rainforest, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is located in North Queensland, Australia– the continent where forest wildlife goes to get away from it all.

Sprawling across 450 square miles, Daintree is Australia’s oldest forest: It is believed to have survived over 100 million years.

The Daintree River, cutting through the rainforest, is replete with animals, with particular highlight given to the crocs and pythons.

While the Amazonian rainforest may technically have more diverse plant life, Daintree has the greatest number of rare flora of all the beautiful forests on this list.

Another knockout feature of visiting the Daintree Rainforest is that it has the unique characteristic of bordering another UNESCO site, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

New Guinea, Photo courtesy eGuide Travel


At just over a meager 110,000 square miles, the forests of New Guinea are the third-largest tropical forest in the world (after the Amazon and Congo basin).

These beautiful forests are home to many mammals that are completely unique to the island. Though it’s only one-tenth the size of Australia, New Guinea has just as many species of rainforest plants and animals, including the world’s tiniest parrot and largest pigeon.

New Guinea also has the highest mountains east of the Himalayas. Due to the variances in altitude, the country has a huge range of climates, including the world’s only tropical glacier. The lowland forests are the most diverse, with the tallest canopy.

New Guinea’s montane forest is home to many unusual animals, such as Scott’s Tree Kangaroo and the Cyclops Long-beaked Echidna.


Bialowieza National Park, Photo courtesy Frank Vassen via flickr & CC 2.0


Bialowieza Forest is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that straddles Belarus and Poland and claims roughly 1,191 square miles of land, with the official site occupying about half of that area.

It earned its UNESCO distinction for being a rare example of the old growth forests that once stretched across Europe, as well as a vital wildlife corridor.

In terms of animals, this beautiful forest is home to three different packs of Wolves, Bison, Wild Boar, and a variety of rare bird species. Some of the trees, which include oak, ash, spruce, etc., are over 600 years old.

A source of true pride, especially for Poland, this forest has been under protection since the 1400s. It was once declared a royal hunting ground. During the Soviet era, it was used as a retreat for elites.

However, keeping it protected has not been without challenges. The Lukoil Project (initiated by a Russian oil company) as well as timber and development/expansion have all threatened it in recent years.

Biggest Forest in the World -Taiga Forest -Siberian Autumn
Siberian Autumn in Taiga Forest by Elkwiki CC BY-SA 3.0 


Taiga is the Russian name that is used globally for the biggest forest in the world. The Tiaga Biome is a nearly continuous belt of coniferous forest that stretches through the far northern reaches of Europe, Asia, and North America.

In addition to the biggest, it is also the longest forest in the world covering over 10% of the planet.  Other than oceans, the Tiaga comprises the world’s largest biome.

Here, the winters are long and brutal, while the warmer seasons only have a maximum of 100 frost-free days. Evergreens such as spruce, fir, and pine dominate the relatively untouched landscape.

Though the world’s rainforests would seem to have more biodiversity, the Taiga also offers a host of impressive wildlife. Huge mammals such as Bears, Elk, and Moose are rampant throughout these woods, as are smaller predators such as Wolverines, Minks, and Pine Martins.

Perhaps most importantly, these boreal forests of the far north remain truly wild. And keeping this wilderness pristine will likely prove vital for us human beings to have any hope of a healthy planet in the future.

20 Biggest Forest - The Black Forest
Black Forest


Encompassing around 2,300 square miles, Germany’s Black Forest (or Schwarzwald) is only the second largest forest in Germany in terms of surface area. But its reputation is certainly the biggest on the world stage. It’s mythical woods are at once ominous and endearing, well-traveled and haunting.

The Black Forest is named for its remarkably dense canopy, which causes it to be very dark at the floor level. Even so, it is one of the most beloved tourist destinations in Germany, noted for its old world villages and stunning natural beauty.

It’s also a very frequented ski spot, and has a famous spa town called Titisee-Neustadt. Consequently, it is well protected and regarded by Germans as a national treasure.

This is where cuckoo clocks come from, as well as countless tales of witches and werewolves. The forest borders France and Switzerland, and is part of the continental divide, with watersheds draining to the Atlantic and the Black Sea.

In terms of mountains, evergreens, streams, and lakes, it doesn’t get much more forest-y than this. It’s also laden with vineyards, castles, and villages.

20 Biggest Forests - Virgin Komi Forest
Russian Taiga


The Virgin Komi Forests– the largest virgin forest in Europe– are located in Russia’s Ural Mountains, expanding across roughly 12,500 square miles.

The Virgin Komi are composed of two Russian wilderness areas, the Pechora-Ilych Nature Reserve and Yugyd Va National Park, and were protected as a UNSECO treasure in 1995. They were the first natural site in Russia ever to get the honor.

In reality, the Virgin Komi Forests are part of the Taiga, the much larger forest system that appeared earlier on this list. But, because of their United Nations designation as a site of distinction, they warrant a place all their own on the list of the world’s largest forests.

The forests are primarily a combination of Siberian spruce, fir, and larch, under which roam Reindeer, Sables, and Mink. Unfortunately, the forests have become increasingly threatened in recent years by illegal logging and gold mining.


20 Biggest Forests - GREAT LAKES - ST. LAWRENCE
St. Lawrence River


The Great Lakes–St. Lawrence forest is in Canada, south of the boreal forest. Measuring  around 45,000 square miles, it is Canada’s second biggest forest in Ontario. But it’s only a fraction of the size of the boreal forest.

Ecologically speaking, the area is considered a transition zone between the evergreens (such as spruces, hemlocks, and other conifers) of the boreal forest and the deciduous trees (such as oaks, birches, and maples) of the more southerly forests in the US.

The forest includes predator wildlife, such as Bears and Wolves. There is also plenty of big prey for them, in the form of Moose and Deer. Water-loving mammals like Beavers, Otters, and Muskrats are prevalent as well, as are some 220 species of birds.

Unfortunately, less than 5% of the original forest remains intact, due largely to agriculture and urban development. As a result, the Saint Lawrence River is considered one of the most polluted in the world, and the forest’s future remains vulnerable.

20 Biggest Forests - Lacandon Jungle
Ruins of Palenque


The Lacandon Jungle stretches east across Mexico’s southernmost state, Chiapas, into the Yucatan Peninsula and down into Guatemala. In total, it includes over 7,300 square miles of beautiful lakes, rivers, and waterfalls.

At the center of the Lacadon Jungle is the Monte Azules Biosphere Reserve in Chiapas. Much of the forest outside this reserve has been at least partially damaged. However, it is still the largest montane rainforest in North America.

Within the jungle, there are several sacred Mayan archeological sites, including Palenque and Bonampak. Nowadays, the Lacandon Maya (who have legal title to most of the reserve lands) are at odds with the Zapatistas, who would like to farm it.

The forest includes gigantic trees, such as the Ceiba (Tree of Life for the Mayan People) and Guanacaste, and huge flora, like elephant ears and palms. Macaws, Monkeys, Jaguars, and Crocodiles all call these woods their home, as do many tropical birds.

Sequoia Tree National Forest


The huge forests of the Sierra Nevada mountains have to be on this list because they’re home to Sequoias, the biggest trees on the planet. The 38 groves that comprise the Sequoia National Forest provide shade for about 1865 square miles of wilderness.

A Sequoia named General Sherman is the world’s undisputed largest tree (by volume). It is believed to be over 2000 years old, weighing more than 2.5 million pounds and stretching over 275 feet tall.

The Sequoia groves are all located in south-central California, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains. They can be visited in Yosemite, Sequoia. and King’s Canyon National Parks. Camping is available, and Black Bears are frequently spotted there.

There are coastal redwood forests (the tallest trees on the planet) in California as well. But those are located along the northern coast, starting just below the Bay Area. Sequoia and Redwood trees are often mistakenly considered the same, but they are actually distinctly different.

20 Biggest Forests - Tongass
Catch of the Day


The Tongass National Forest in southeastern Alaska is the United States’ largest national forest at 26,500 square miles. About a third of that area is managed as complete wilderness.

The biggest tourist attractions in this forest are its glaciers. This is one of the few spots where some of the 100,000 glaciers in Alaska reveal themselves as enormous ice sheets. Mendenhall Glacier, near Juneau, is easily the most visited.

That said, the Tongass also has fantastic wildlife spotting. Bears are commonplace in the region and can be seen fishing in the creeks, where the Salmon run. And, as in much of Alaska, Bald Eagles are almost always present.

Additionally, there are a lot of recreational activities, such as boating, camping, hiking, and fishing. Over 150 cabins are available for rent in The Tongass.



Located in the northern part of Nicaragua, the Bosawás Biosphere Reserve covers nearly 8,500 square miles. Protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s the largest rainforest in Central America and the second largest in the Western hemisphere.

This humid tropical forest canopies over a hilly terrain– an area that includes a biosphere nucleus and a buffer zone. Together, it accounts for about 15% of the total land in Nicaragua.

Bosawás (which was named after the Bocay River, Mount Saslaya, and Waspuk River) was one of three large reserves that resulted from the Sandinista revolution.

The forest is believed to be home to up to 200,000 types of insects. Its birds include the elusive Quetzal, Guacamayas (macaws), and Harpy Eagles. It’s also home to Central America’s two big cats, the Jaguar and Puma, as well as their favorite dinner, Tapirs.

There are two indigenous tribes who live on the reserve, the Sumos and Miskito people, who still practice subsistence farming today. Overall, the reserve has a total population of about 130,000 people.


Amazon Rainforest, Photo courtesy CIFOR


Spreading across much of Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, and Suriname, the Amazon Rainforest is the most biodiverse and largest rainforest in the world. It covers approximately 2.2 million square miles.

Collectively, there are over a million species accounted for in the dense rainforest vast basin. And who knows how many more are still waiting to be discovered? It’s also home to the world’s second longest and largest (by water flow) river.

Unfortunately, deforestation (especially in Brazil) has threatened one of the world’s most famous forests since the beginning of the 20th century. Yet the Amazon Rainforest basin still immense, stretching over 1200 miles.

The forest is as dense, hot, and potentially dangerous as it is beautiful. But it’s also a treasure trove of plants and wildlife, such as Rosewood, Jaguar, Manatee, and Brazil Nut.

20 Biggest Forests - Atlantic Forest
Atlantic Forest


Located along the coastline of Brazil, moving all the way into Paraguay and Argentina, the Atlantic Forest was once over 500,000 square miles. Unfortunately, only about 15% of the forest– roughly 75,000 square miles– remains intact today.

While that may seem like a lot of forest, the issue is that it is home to some of the rarest species in the world. It is also one of the most biodiverse places on the planet.

The Atlantic Forest has over 2,000 species of animals (not counting insects) and is home to over 60% of Brazil’s threatened animals.

That’s not even getting into the fact that 450-plus tree species– more than all of the North America’s eastern seaboard– have been identified in just 2.5 acres of the Atlantic Forest.

While it may be significantly smaller than the neighboring Amazonian rainforest, the Atlantic Forest is still amongst the world’s largest and most important forests.

Valdivian Rainforest, Photo courtesy Jason Hollinger


The Valdivian Rainforest is a temperate rainforest in the southern part of South America, between the Andes Mountains and the Pacific coast.

It’s ranked among the world’s most beautiful forests because it is considered a biogeographic island. That means it’s completely separated from other forests, oceans, and desert borders. The area is thought to have been inhabited by humans as far back as 12,000 BC.

At almost 100,000 square miles, this massive forest is full of national parks, beaches, rivers, lakes, islands, and hiking trails.

Due to its isolation, there are numerous endemic species that are exclusively found in Valdivia, such as primitive marsupials and Pudu, the world’s smallest deer.

There are also many special trees, including the Antarctic beech, Alerce (which is super tall and old), and monkey puzzle trees.

Forest Facts
Grotto Falls near The Trillium Gap Trail – Great Smoky Mountains



The Amazon is the largest rainforest in the world. It covers approximately 2.2 million square miles. The Taiga is the largest forest in the world and stretches through the far northern reaches of Europe, Asia, and North America.


The Amazon rainforest reaches across Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, and Suriname.


The definition of jungle is “an impenetrable thicket or tangled mass of tropical vegetation”. This Jungle definition is usually associated with tropical forest or rainforest, which would make the Amazon the biggest jungle in the world.


General Sherman is the world’s largest tree (by volume) and is located in the Sequoia Forest in California. It is believed to be over 2000 years old, weighing more than 2.5 million pounds and stretching over 275 feet tall.


Canada’s Boreal Forest is the biggest. The Biggest National Forest in America is Tongass which is located in Alaska.


The Sundarbans is the world’s biggest mangrove forest. It is located in Bangladesh and northern India.


The Biggest Forest in India is located in the state of Madhya Pradesh. There are 9 National Parks and 35 Wildlife sanctuaries.  The largest National Park in Madhya Pradesh is Kanha National Park.

Largest Armies In The World

China has the largest standing army in the world followed by India and the United States.

29 Largest Armies In The World
The military are there to protect their country from harm.

The world in which we live in is not perfect. This means that countries need armies and guns and they also tend to go to war with each other. Countries that face threats from within and outside their borders have to deal with different security risks. This kind of reality forces countries to raise powerful armies to protect and defend their interests. The numbers below are provided by the International Institute for Strategic Studies in their 2018 report.

Chinese People’s Liberation Army Is the Largest Standing Army In The World

When judging the largest standing armies in the world we see that there are many armies that are really big and strong. China is the country with the largest standing army and is one of the best trained. China has upped its military budgets by more than 10% a year over the last five years. This army was established way back in 1927 and was known as the China People’s Liberation Army which is made up of Ground Forces, NAVY and Artillery as well as armed police and of course a strong air force. The latest estimates about the size of this army is put at 2,035,000 personnel. Most of the personnel of this army are aged between 18 and 49 years. By law military service is compulsory in China, although the country has never enforced conscription due to the large number of volunteers from its population. Its army is divided into five main service branches: the Ground Force, the Navy, the Air Force, the Rocket Force, and the Strategic Support Force. The army is well trained and equipped and is considered to be one of the strongest in the world, although its equipment is considered to be behind the US by about 20 years.

The United States Is the Most Powerful Military In The World

When you think about largest armies in the world you will no doubt also think about the US, whose army which is considered the strongest and best equipped in the world. It also has the largest military budget of $610 billion which is far larger than its closest rival China at $216 billion and is (actually bigger than the next nine countries combined). The country’s army was formed way back in 1775 and since then the army of this country has come a long way. Today, it has about 1,358,193 active duty personnel. The US has the second-largest army in the world and it is considered one of the best-trained and most powerfully equipped armies in the world. It has by far the most aircrafts, biggest advancement in technologies like the Navy’s new rail gun, best trained human force and the world’s largest nuclear arsenal.

Other Notable Armies Across The World

Other countries with the largest armies in the world include India, which is ranked number second in size. This army is well equipped with missiles that can hit targets far away from its shores. Russia has earned an enviable reputation for having a well-trained and powerful army. Currently it is ranked fifth as far as largest armies in the world go. Its army is made up of personnel aged between 18 and 27 and it currently has 1,013,628 soldiers.

Countries like France do not enjoy a reputation for having large armies in the world but it is nevertheless a country with a budget of over 62.3 billion dollars, which is the fifth largest in the world. The report showed that the United Kingdom has more than 150,250 strong personnel in its army. This is a country with small army in terms of personnel but it has a huge budget. Iran is another country that spends significantly on military, with an army consisting of about 523,000 active personnel with a defense budget of about 30 billion dollars.

Almost every country in the world has an army that protects it against both external as well as internal forces. When comparing militaries the size of the standing army does not judge the strength of the military alone. Their military histories, budgets and current operations also have to be taken into account.

Which Country Has the Largest Army?

China has the largest active military in the world with over 2 million members. India has the second-largest military with 1.39 members and the United States has the third largest military with 1.34 million members.

29 Largest Armies In The World

RankCountryActive Military Personnel
3United States of America1,358,193
4Russian Federation1,013,628
5Democratic People’s Republic of Korea950,000
7Republic of Korea599,000
15Sri Lanka346,700
21Saudi Arabia227,000
26South Sudan185,000

The Largest Hotels In The World

The Largest Hotels in the World
The First World Hotel and Plaza has set the Guinness World Record for Largest Hotel in the World.

While many of the world’s largest hotels are found in the United States, locations such as Macau, Malaysia, Thailand, and Russia also boast very large hotels. Las Vegas, USA is an epicenter of megahotels, with many of its properties making this list. Macau, however, follows closely behind with its hospitality offerings. Below is a detailed analysis of the world’s biggest hotel properties.

Currently, a hotel is under construction in Saudi Arabia, called the Abraj Kudai. When opened, the hotel is expected to have a total of 10,000 guest rooms. This would give it the number one spot on the list of the world’s largest hotels.

The Three Largest Hotels In The World

First World Hotel – 7,351 Rooms

The First World Hotel is a three star hotel found in Genting Highlands, Malaysia. Initially, the hotel was the world’s largest until it was dethroned by an expansion of The Venetian in Las Vegas (now known as The Palazzo) which officially opened on January 1st, 2008. However, with the opening of a new block in 2015, the First World Hotel once again regained its title as the world’s biggest hotel. The First World Hotel consists of two towers with 3,164 standard rooms, 2,922 deluxe rooms, 649 triple deluxe rooms, 480 superior deluxe rooms and 136 world club rooms. This brings the hotel’s room total to 7,351.

The Venetian / Palazzo – 7,117 Rooms

The Venetian is a five diamond luxury hotel in Las Vegas. Found on the Las Vegas strip, the Venetian consists of 7,117 rooms in total. It is the second largest hotel in the world. However, the casino portion of the Venetian, is the world’s largest casino.

MGM Grand Las Vegas – 6,852 Rooms

The MGM Grand Las Vegas is a casino and hotel in Las Vegas. Formally known as the Marina and the MGM Marina, the MGM Grand is the third largest hotel in the world with 6,852 rooms. When the MGM Grand Las Vegas was officially opened in 1993 it was the world’s largest hotel complex. The hotel, which is owned and operated by MGM Resorts International, features a 30- floor building with a height of 293 feet. Inside the building sits waterfalls, a convention center, five outdoor pools, the Grand Spa, rivers and the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

Record Holders In The Hotel Industry

Throughout the years Moscow, Malaysia, and Las Vegas have exchanged the title of the largest hotel in the world. The Guinness World Records distinction has ignited a friendly competition of sorts between countries. However, the city of Las Vegas hold the title for having the biggest collection of the largest hotels in the world – it is home to 14 out of the 25 world’s largest hotels. The world’s largest hotels can be compared to mini cities due to their sizes and the facilities they have within their establishments.

What is the Biggest Hotel in the World?

The First World Hotel and Plaza in Malaysia is the world’s largest hotel location. he First World Hotel consists of two towers with 3,164 standard rooms, 2,922 deluxe rooms, 649 triple deluxe rooms, 480 superior deluxe rooms and 136 world club rooms.

Largest Hotel Locations in the World

RankHotel NameCountryCapacity
1First World HotelMalaysia7,351
2The Venetian/PalazzoUnited States7,117
3MGM Grand Las VegasUnited States6,852
4CityCenterUnited States6,790
5Sands Cotai CentralMacau6,000
6Izmailovo HotelRussia5,000
7Wynn Las VegasUnited States4,750
8Mandalay BayUnited States4,426
9Luxor Las VegasUnited States4,407
10Ambassador City JomtienThailand4,219
11Sheraton Grand MacaoMacau4,001
12Excalibur Hotel and CasinoUnited States3,981
13Caesars PalaceUnited States3,960
14Bellagio Las VegasUnited States3,950
15Circus Circus Las VegasUnited States3,773
16Shinagawa Prince HotelJapan3,680
17Flamingo Las VegasUnited States3,626
18Atlantis Paradise IslandBahamas3,414
19Hilton Hawaiian VillageHonolulu3,386
20Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside and French QuarterUnited States3,056
21The MirageUnited States3,044
22Monte Carlo Resort and CasinoUnited States3,002
23The ParisianMacau3,000
24The Venetian MacaoMacau3,000
25Cosmopolitan of Las VegasUnited States2,995

World’s Largest Recorded Earthquake

9.5 Magnitude – May 22, 1960 near Valdivia, Chile

world's largest earthquake - tsunami map

World’s largest earthquake – tsunami map: The Chilean earthquake produced a powerful tsunami that traveled at a speed of about 200 miles per hour across the Pacific Ocean. The wave killed 61 people in Hawaii, 138 in Japan, and 32 in the Philippines. The star marks the location of the epicenter, and the numbers on the contour lines are travel times in hours for the wave front. Image by NOAA. 

“The Great Chilean Earthquake”

The world’s largest earthquake with an instrumentally documented magnitude occurred on May 22, 1960 near Valdivia, in southern Chile. It was assigned a magnitude of 9.5 by the United States Geological Survey. It is referred to as the “Great Chilean Earthquake” and the “1960 Valdivia Earthquake.”

The United States Geological Survey reports this event as the “largest earthquake of the 20th Century.” Other earthquakes in recorded history may have been larger; however, this is the largest earthquake that has occurred since accurate estimates of magnitude became possible in the early 1900s.

largest earthquake - tsunami damage

Largest earthquake – tsunami damage: An aerial view of damage caused along the coast of Chile by the tsunamis. This scene shows part of a coastal community where homes were torn from their foundations and tossed about by the waves. Damage was near total in these areas. NOAA image by Pierre St. Amand.

Local Damage from Ground Motion and Tsunamis

The earthquake occurred beneath the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Chile. Ground motion from this earthquake destroyed or damaged thousands of buildings. The Chilean government estimated that about 2,000,000 people were left homeless. It was fortunate that the earthquake occurred in the middle of the afternoon and was preceded by a powerful foreshock. That foreshock frightened most people from their buildings, placing them outside when the main earthquake occurred.

Most of the damage and deaths were caused by a series of tsunamis that were generated by the earthquake. These waves swept over coastal areas moments after the earthquake occurred. They pushed buildings from their foundations and drowned many people.

There are many different casualty estimates for this earthquake. They range from a low of 490 to a high of “approximately 6000.” Most of the casualties were caused by tsunamis in Chile and from ground motion. However, people as far away as the Philippines were killed by this event.

The costs of the damage were estimated to have been between $400 and $800 million in 1960 dollars, which would be about $3 to $6 billion today, adjusted for inflation.

largest earthquake - damage at Valdivia

Earthquake damage at Valdivia: Photograph of buildings in Valdivia, Chile damaged by the earthquake. This photo shows houses located on an area underlain by fill. They slid downhill when the waterlogged soil beneath them failed. NOAA image by Pierre St. Amand.

Tsunami Damage

This is one of the few earthquakes that has killed large numbers of people at distant locations. Tsunamis generated by the earthquake traveled across the Pacific Ocean at a speed of over 200 miles per hour. Changes in sea level were noticed all around the Pacific Ocean basin.

Fifteen hours after the earthquake, a tsunami with a runup of 35 feet swept over coastal areas of Hawaii. Many shoreline facilities and buildings near coastal areas were destroyed. Near Hilo, Hawaii, 61 people were reported killed by the waves.

In California, many small boats were damaged as the waves swept through marinas. At Crescent City, a wave had a runup of about 5 feet and caused damage to shoreline structures and small boats.

Waves up to 18 feet high hit the island of Honshu, Japan about 22 hours after the earthquake. There it destroyed more than 1600 homes and left 185 people dead or missing. Another 32 people were killed in the Philippines about 24 hours after the earthquake. Damage also occurred on Easter Island and Samoa.

largest earthquake - tsunami damage at Queule

Tsunami damage at Queule: Before and after photographs of the village of Queule, Chile. This area was damaged by land subsidence and was inundated by the tsunami. Houses, boats, and uprooted trees were washed as much as a mile inland by a 13-foot-high tsunami. NOAA image by Pierre St. Amand.

Subsidence and Uplift

The United States Geological Survey reports that there was about five feet of subsidence along the Chilean coast from the south end of the Arauco Peninsula to Quellon on Chiloe Island. This left a number of buildings below water level at high tide. As much as ten feet of uplift occurred at Isla Guafo.


This was a megathrust earthquake that occurred at a depth of about 20 miles, where the Nazca Plate is subducting beneath the South American Plate. It produced a 500-mile-long rupture zone extending from Talca, Chile to the Chiloe Archipelago. Numerous large earthquakes have occurred in this area before and after the May 22, 1960 event.

World’s Twelve Largest Earthquakes
Includes all measured earthquakes since 1900
9.1Off the coast of Northern Sumatra12/26/2004
9.1Honshu, Japan03/11/2011
8.8Off the coast of Chile02/27/2010
8.8Off the coast of Ecuador01/31/1906
8.7Rat Islands, Alaska02/04/1965
8.6Off the coast of Northern Sumatra04/11/2012
8.6Northern Sumatra03/28/2005
8.6Andreanof Islands, Alaska03/09/1957
Data from the United States Geological Survey.


The earthquake was preceded by four foreshocks greater than magnitude 7.0. The largest was a magnitude 7.9 earthquake one day before that caused significant damage in the Concepcion area.

largest earthquake - tsunami damage in Hawaii

Tsunami damage in Hawaii: A photo of a tsunami-damaged area in Hilo, Hawaii. The area in the foreground was cleared of heavy machinery, mill rollers, and metal stocks that were strewn about by the wave. USGS Photo.

Global seismic moment release

Global seismic moment release: During the 100-year period between 1906 and 2005, three earthquakes accounted for nearly half of the world’s total seismic release. The 1960 Valdivia Earthquake accounted for greater than 20% of the global seismic release. The width of thin black wedge at slightly past 3:00 on the chart represents the release of the deadly San Francisco Earthquake of 1906.

Damage in Hawaii

(Quoted from: Tsunami in Hawaii. Lander, James F., and Lockridge, Patricia A., 1989, in: United States Tsunamis 1690-1988: U.S. Dept. of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.)

“A devastating earthquake (magnitude 8.6) off the coast of central Chile generated a tsunami affecting the entire Pacific Basin. In general the wave action along Hawaiian shores was quiet, resembling that of the tide, although it had a shorter period and a greater range. It killed 61 and seriously injured 43.

In Hilo Bay, however, the third wave was converted into a bore that flooded inland to the 6 m contour. Nearly 240 hectares (600 acres) inland of Hilo harbor were inundated, and all the deaths and $23.5 million of the damage occurred in this area. (The estimates of damage in Hawaii vary from $75 million in Talley and Cloud (1962), to $20 million in Wall (1960). A total of about $24 million for Hawaii is given by the Hawaiian office of Civil Defense.)

In nearly half of this area total destruction occurred. In the area of maximum destruction, only buildings of reinforced concrete or structural steel, and a few others sheltered by these buildings, remained standing–and even these were generally gutted. Frame buildings either were crushed or floated nearly to the limits of flooding. Dozens of automobiles were wrecked; a 10-metric-ton tractor in a showroom was swept away; heavy machinery, mill rollers, and metal stocks were strewn about. Rocks weighing as much as 20 metric tons were plucked from a sea wall and carried as far as 180 m inland. Damage elsewhere on the Island of Hawaii was restricted to the west and southern coasts, where about a dozen buildings, mostly of frame construction, were floated off their foundations, crushed, or flooded. There was half a million dollars of damage on the Kona coast alone. Six houses were destroyed at Napoopoo.

On Maui the damage was concentrated in the Kahului area on the north coast. A warehouse and half a dozen houses were demolished, and other warehouses, stores, offices, and houses, and their contents were damaged. A church floated 6.1 m away from its foundation. Other buildings were damaged at Paukukalo, just outside and west of the harbor.

At Spreckelsville and Paia, east of Kahului, houses were damaged, and one house at each place was demolished. Additional damage occurred at Kihei on the south coast and Lahaina on the west coast. On the island of Molokai there was some damage to houses, fish ponds, and roads, and a beachhouse was demolished on the Island of Lanai. The islands of Kauai and Oahu escaped with only minor damage. Fifty houses at Kuliouou, an eastern suburb of Honolulu, were flooded, and $250,000 in damage was done. Elsewhere on Oahu no damage was reported, even where there was inundation of areas occupied by houses. On Kauai, so far as is known, the only damage consisted of one frame building being floated off its foundation on the south coast.”

largest earthquake - tsunami damage at Corral

Tsunami damage at Corral: Tsunami damage at Corral, Chile. Buildings that used to occupy this site were pushed back against the hills by the tsunami, and some were then carried out to sea by the receding waters. NOAA image by Pierre St. Amand.

largest earthquake - subsidence damage in Quellon

Subsidence damage in Quellon: This view parallels what used to be a waterfront street in the community of Quellon, Chile. This area subsided about six feet during the earthquake, flooding houses at low elevation. NOAA image by Pierre St. Amand.

Damage in California

(Quoted from: Tsunami on West Coast of United States. Lander, James F., and Lockridge, Patricia A., 1989, in: United States Tsunamis 1690-1988: U.S. Dept. of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.)

“The largest wave height in California was measured at the Crescent City tide gage was 1.7 m. Waves of 1.5 m were observed at Stenson Beach. The amplitude was more than 1.4 m at Santa Monica. The amplitude at Port Hueneme was 1.3 m and 1.2 m at Pacifica. The tsunami was recorded widely along the Pacific coast with amplitudes less than 1 m. Two vessels valued at $30,000 were lost at Crescent City.

Major damage was reported in the Los Angeles and Long Beach harbors. An estimated 300 small craft were set adrift and about 30 sunk including a 24 m yacht which smashed into bridge piers partially disabling the bridge. The Yacht Center lost 235 boat landing slips and 110 more were destroyed at the Colonial Yacht Anchorage and Cerritos Yacht Anchorage for a loss of $300,000. A skin diver, Raymond Stuart, was missing and presumed drowned at Cabrillo Beach, but no death certificate was found. In the harbor currents estimated to be 22 km/hr snapped and washed out pilings.

Many thousands of liters of gasoline and oil spilled from the overturn of the boats prompting fears of a fire. Several buoys and navigational aids were swept away at Terminal Island. The Coast Guard landing including the tide gage was washed 5.6 km to sea but was rescued. A mess boy fell 6 m from the bridge of the first ship to attempt to leave the harbor the next day. The ship returned to harbor so his injuries could be treated at the hospital. The accident was blamed on rough seas.

At San Diego, ferry service was interrupted after one passenger-laden ferry smashed into the dock at Coronado knocking out eight pilings. A second ferry was forced 1.5 km off course and into a flotilla of anchored destroyers. More than 80 m of dock were destroyed. A 100 ton dredge rammed the concrete pilings supporting the Mission Bay bridge tearing out a 21 m section. A 45 m bait barge smashed eight slips at the Seaforth Landing before breaking in half and sinking. The currents swept 12 and 30 m floats from the San Diego Harbor Masters Pier on Shelter Island and swept away two sections of dockage at the Southwest Yacht Club at Point Loma.

At Santa Monica the water fell so low that the bottom of the breakwater was nearly exposed. Eight small craft snapped mooring lines but were taken in tow. One surge swept more than 91 m up the beach flooding a parking lot just off the Pacific coast Highway.

At Santa Barbara a drifting oil exploration barge repeatedly rammed the new dredge causing at least $10,000 in damage. An additional $10,000 was done elsewhere including damage to 40 small craft set adrift there.”

world’s first newspaper

Title page of the Relation from 1609

Johann Carolus (1575−1634) was a German publisher of the first newspaper, called Relation aller Fürnemmen und gedenckwürdigen Historien (Account of all distinguished and commemorable stories). The Relation is recognised by the World Association of Newspapers, as well as many authors, as the world’s first newspaper.

Carolus published the German-language newspaper in Strasbourg, which had the status of a free imperial city in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation.


Johann Carolus was born in 1575 in Muhlbach-sur-Munster in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. He was the son of a priest and his wife. He made an apprenticeship as a bookbinder and later worked as a bookseller, a scribe for a newspaper and as a printshop owner. Because of these professions, especially his job as scribe, he held good relationships to postmen and traders, what helped him later to create the Relation aller Fürnemmen und gedenckwürdigen Historien in 1605.


In 2005, the World Association of Newspapers accepted evidence that the Carolus pamphlet was printed beginning in 1605, not 1609 as previously thought. The Carolus petition discovered in the Strasbourg Municipal Archive during the 1980s may be regarded as the birth certificate of the newspaper:”Whereas I have hitherto been in receipt of the weekly news advice [handwritten news reports] and, in recompense for some of the expenses incurred yearly, have informed yourselves every week regarding an annual allowance; Since, however, the copying has been slow and has necessarily taken much time, and since, moreover, I have recently purchased at a high and costly price the former printing workshop of the late Thomas Jobin and placed and installed the same in my house at no little expense, albeit only for the sake of gaining time, and since for several weeks, and now for the twelfth occasion, I have set, printed and published the said advice in my printing workshop, likewise not without much effort, inasmuch as on each occasion I have had to remove the formes from the presses …”

Soon the Relation was followed by other periodicals, such as, the Avisa Relation oder Zeitung.


If a newspaper is defined by the functional criteria of publicity, seriality, periodicity, and currency or actuality (that is, as a single current-affairs series published regularly at intervals short enough for readers to keep abreast of incoming news) then Relation was the first European newspaper.

Using a single criterion of “format” rather than frequency and function, however, English historian of printing Stanley Morison held that the Relation should be classified as a newsbook, on the grounds that it still employed the format and most of the conventions of a book: it is printed in quarto size and the text is set in a single wide column. By Morison’s definition, the world’s first newspaper would be the Dutch Courante uyt Italien, Duytslandt, &c. from 1618. By the same definition no German, English, French, or Italian weekly or daily news publications from the first half of the seventeenth century could be considered “newspapers” either. As noted above, the World Association of Newspapers and many authorities have not adopted his definition.

The Most Amazing Roads In The World

Apparently, we need to get our cars over seas, through mountain passes, and across complete wildernesses, so we as a species have built some of the longest, strangest, steepest, and most incredible roads in the world. You may see them as incredible feats of engineering and the unconquerable nature of the human spirit, or you can take this list as proof positive that human beings are naturally insane.


Drive straight into the ocean.

Overseas Highway, Florida, United States
Photo by Sathish S (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

Enjoy 6.79 miles of nothing but sea on either side of you as you drive out over a system of 42 bridges to the islands in the Florida Bay and the Gulf of Mexico.


Explore a system of islands and islets … by road.

Atlantic Road, Norway
Photo by Johan Bichel Lindegaard (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

This dangerous, breathtaking road is considered by some to offer the world’s most beautiful drive. Hop across tiny islands over a system of eight roller-coaster-like bridges, including the “bridge to nowhere,” which at first appears like one’s about to drive off into the ocean.


Oh, we’ll just wait for the Arctic Ocean to freeze. It’s fine.

Tuktoyaktuk Winter Road, Canada
Photo by Ian Mackenzie (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

Of Ice Road Truckers fame, this highway connects ice-locked communities and is mostly used by huge, heavy tractor-trailers. The fact that anyone uses it at all is pretty crazy, though.



Drive literally through a cliff.

Guoliang Tunnel, China
Photo by FANG Chen (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

Considered to be one of the most dangerous roads in the world, this mile-long tunnel through a cliff was reportedly chiseled by only 13 villagers in Huixian, Xinxiang, Henan Province.


Explore the Norwegian countryside via hellish hairpin turns.

Trollstigen, Norway
Photo by Martijnvdbraak (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

Called the “Troll Ladder,” this 65.8-mile stretch contains 11 hairpin bends, which help you to manage the crazy incline of nine percent and get up to 858 meters above sea level (2,814.96 feet, which is still higher than the world’s highest skyscraper).


Because guardrails are for people who value their life on Earth.

North Yungas Road, Bolivia
Photo by GilCahana (Wikimedia Commons) Public Domain

On another one of the most dangerous roads, your trip across the “road of fate” or “death road” will include having a rock cliff on one side and a 2,000-foot drop on the other. Oh, and it’s mostly a one-lane road. “Shouldn’t it have guardrails?” you ask. “Shouldn’t we respect our own mortality?” we answer. Also, there’s severe fog occasionally, making it even more ridiculously treacherous.


Climb the original stairway to heaven.

Tianmen Mountain Road, China
Photo by Huangdan2060 (Wikimedia Commons) Public Domain

If you don’t feel like taking the world’s longest cable car ride, you can always take the winding road. The 99 turns may be a bit much for you, but you’ll be 3,937 feet in the air when you’re done.



Enjoy your nosebleed on the highest paved road on the planet.

Karakoram Highway (KKH), Pakistan
Photo by Saadzafar91 (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

At an altitude of 16,000 feet, this 800-mile highway between Pakistan and China goes through a nearly impassible strip of land traversed by those going along the Silk Road: the Karakoram mountain range.


You know it’s a serious road when it requires a 4×4 vehicle.

Sani Pass, South Africa
Photo by Vaiz Ha (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

Climb up to an altitude of 2,876 meters (9,436 feet) here. To give you some perspective, aircraft are required to have pressurized cabins at 10,000, and you’re almost there. This mostly one-lane, muddy road also is notorious for bad weather and relentless snow at that height. It’s nuts.


It’s so scary that you need a special permit to drive it.

Skippers Canyon Road, New Zealand
Photo by Ysander (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

Rated as one of the world’s most dangerous roads, the scary, beautiful, narrow, mostly one-way path over the Shotover River outside of Queenstown is a tense drive to an area that gold miners really, really wanted to get to.


Get over the mountains that Hannibal couldn’t.

Stelvio Pass, Italy
Photo by hpgruesen (Pixabay) Public Domain

Considered by some to be the world’s greatest road, the Passo dello Stelvio allows you to zip and turn along the top of the Alps at 9,045 feet.


See the inner Alps in a way that wasn’t possible until 1945.

Susten Pass, Switzerland
Photo by Johnw (Wikimedia Commons) Public Domain

With tight curves through huge mountains, this road gives you the full view of both glaciers and idyllic valleys.


Certainly, a landmass that has blocked species and civilizations needs a road in it.

Trans-Sahara Highway, Africa
Photo by Albert Backer (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

Sometimes paved, sometimes not, this 2,796-mile roadway is one of Africa’s most complete border-crossing highways.


It’s called “snails’ pass,” probably because you’d rather have a mucus-coated underside to your car than drive on it.

Paso de Los Libertadores, Chile/Argentina
Photo by Karora (Wikimedia Commons) Public Domain

Another mountainous route with no guardrails and tons of switchbacks, this one is closed most of the year due to snow. It connects two areas that were closed off from each other for much of history.


Certainly, a landmass that has blocked species and civilizations needs a road in it.

Trans-Sahara Highway, Africa
Photo by AthulBiju94 (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 4.0

Sometimes paved, sometimes not, this 2,796-mile roadway is one of Africa’s most complete border-crossing highways.


View some of the highest peaks in the world from your car.

Friendship Highway, Tibet
Photo by Royonx (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 1.0

Also in the impassible Himalayas, the less-friendly-looking Friendship Highway will help you get to that big mountain you want to climb so badly: Mount Everest.



Tour a southern highway that hugs the Pacific Ocean.

Great Ocean Road, Australia
Photo by Diliff (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

This war memorial highway cuts through rainforests, national parks, whale lookouts, and the home of the limestone “Twelve Apostles.” It’s one of the most beautiful roads in the entire world, but you may want to stop and surf while you’re there.


They call it the “road to paradise” for a reason.

Hana Highway, Hawaii, United States
Photo by Ken Lund (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

Off the coast of Maui is the favorite highway for honeymooners: the Hana Highway, which is known for its rainforests, waterfalls, and unique beaches. It’s the ideal spot for a tropical road trip.


See Scotland’s best lochs from the driver’s seat.

A82 Road, Scotland
Photo by N Chadwick (Geograph) is licensed under CC 2.0

Widely considered to be one of the most beautiful drives in the UK in general, the A82’s dramatic views of the Highlands can wow even the most unimpressed traveler. Don’t forget to visit the Rannoch Moor Bridge while you’re there.


Cruise along by the villages of the Amalfi Coast.

The SS163, Italy
Photo by JeCCo (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 4.0

Vistas, gardens, pastel villages, turquoise waters, and, of course, amazing Italian culture make this road a tourist attraction. Just take care, as it’s a winding route near cliffs.


Enjoy the views of red mountains and the turquoise sea.

Chapman's Peak, South Africa
Photo by Mwgielink (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

With 114 curves in five miles, this breathtaking road might make you a bit queasy as you look down the hundreds of meters at Hout Bay. Just watch out for falling rocks.


Drive, or really tear through, France.

Col de Turini, France
Photo by Jérémie Forget Public Domain

A favorite for Europe’s daredevil drivers, this winding road through the French Alps has also been featured in the Tour de France.


The “great snow wall drive” will make you rethink your winter commute (and probably drool a little).

Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route, Japan
Photo by Uryah (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

This sightseeing route helps you to experience the “roof of Japan,” which also happens to experience heavy snows at an average of 23 feet.


Watch the sun set on the ocean and the mountains along the “ring road.”

Route 1, Iceland
Photo by Neil D’Cruze (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

Another one of the world’s best road-trip locations, the circle-shaped highway around the island of Iceland is full of glaciers, ice caves, waterfalls, and rainbows.


When you want to be blown away by beauty while also risking your life, go here.

Connor Pass, Ireland
Photo by Adrian Platt (Geograph) is licensed under CC 2.0

Winding through the highest mountains in Ireland and fairy-tale-like vistas on the Dingle Peninsula, this tight street also happens to be mostly one-way. It’s the most beautiful and possibly the most dangerous in Ireland.



Cruise through Big Sur and admire the Pacific Coast.

Pacific Coast Highway, California
Photo by Diliff (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

Considered the site of one of the best road trips in the U.S., the Pacific Coast Highway is often in full view of some of California’s beaches and best attractions.


Feel the flames of victory.

Valley of Fire Road, Nevada
Photo by esudroff (Pixabay) Public Domain

Deep red Aztec sandstone lines the landscape surrounding Nevada State Route 169. In the reflection of the powerful desert sun, the state park really looks like you’re driving through fire.


Enjoy a stomach-churning 17-mile crossing over water.

Chesapeake Bay Bridge/Tunnel, Virginia
Photo by Wind Watcher (Flickr) is licensed under CC 2.0

Alternating between a couple not-so-scenic tunnels and way-too-scenic bridges, this was considered to be a huge engineering feat when it was originally constructed in the 1960s.


It’s a road built almost for the sole purpose of being pretty.

Going-to-the-Sun Road, Montana
Photo by Mcrawfish (Wikimedia Commons) is licensed under CC 3.0

This 50-mile road was created in 1932 for those adventurous Americans hoping to experience the pure, natural setting of Montana. Pass through Logan Pass at 6,646 feet up as you chug along.


When being on fire wasn’t quite enough, head here.

Red Rock Scenic Byway, Arizona
Photo by John Fowler (Wikimedia Commons) CC 2.0

The strange, otherworldly rock formations are the most notable feature of this valley road, considered to be the partner road to the Valley of Fire Road 20 miles west.


Get unspoiled views of natural beauty.

Denali Highway, Alaska
Photo by Nic McPhee (Wikimedia Commons) CC 2.0

This is a landscape that’s practically untouched by man, save for the 135-mile road though mountains and glaciers. It’s considered to be one of the most beautiful drives in the world.