True Lithuania

Geography of Lithuania

Map of Lithuania.

Main facts

Population: ~3 000 000
Area: 65 300 sq. km
Population density: 46 people per sq. km
Lowest point: -4 m at Nemunas Delta | Highest point: 294 m at Aukštojas hill

Regional groupings

Lithuania is grouped with Latvia and Estonia into Baltic States. All three Baltic States shares a recent (post-1795) history. They also have similar lowland geography, land area and (to some extent) population. Lithuania and Latvia are also similar culturally but Estonia is different.

Whether the Baltic States are part of Northern, Eastern or Central Europe is disputed and may be even controversial. Given the history most locals dislike to be associated with Russia and thus some also denounce the name "Eastern Europeans" (pointing that Lithuania is in the continent's geographic center). The official UN classification puts the Baltic States within the Northern Europe.

Territorial divisions

Lithuania is officially divided into 10 apskritys (counties, regions) which are subdivided into 60 municipalities. Most municipalities are further subdivided into elderates and these into elderaties.

More famous is, however, the traditional division of Lithuania into five ethnographic regions, each with its own culture and dialect. Those are Dzūkija, Aukštaitija, Sūduva (Suvalkija), Samogitia (Žemaitija) and Lithuania Minor (Mažoji Lietuva).

This traditional division is unofficial despite of many calls to make the regions official by erecting administrative units corresponding to them.

Comparisons

Lithuania is a lowland country (in fact the world's largest country to lack a location above 300 m).

In size, Lithuania is larger than such contries as Belgium, the Netherlands, Latvia and Estonia.

In population, Lithuania is larger than such countries as Latvia, Estonia and Slovenia.

Lithuania's population density is lower than that of Central/Western Europe yet higher than that of Nothern/Eastern Europe.

Article written by Augustinas Žemaitis

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