República de Colombia Capital: Santa Fe de Bogotá Independence day: July 20, 1810
Colombia is located in northern South
America. "The Gate to South America", Colombia is the only South American country with coastlines on both the North Pacific
Ocean and Caribbean Sea.
Colombia shares borders with Venezuela, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador
and Panama. With the archipelago of San Andres and Providencia 435 miles off the
Caribbean coast, Colombia also shares maritime borders with Nicaragua and Costa Rica.
Colombia has an area of 440,831 square miles (1,141,748 square kilometres), roughly
equal to the area of Portugal, Spain, and France put together. Colombia can be
divided into 5 main regions: Caribbean, Pacific, Andes, Eastern Plains and the
Amazon. Each region, with its own unique climate and geographical features, compose
a country of great biodiversity and rich contrasts.
Being in the middle of the planet, on the Equator, Colombia
enjoys sunlight all year round. The climate varies from the tropical heat on the
coasts, to the perpetual snows of the mountains. Because of its geographic location,
Colombia has no seasons, but rather a dry period and a rainy period with
temperatures being stable throughout most of the year.
Colombia has various islands like San Bernardo, Islas del
Rosario and the San Andres & Providencia archipelago in the Caribbean Sea; and
Gorgona, Gorgonilla, and Malpelo in the Pacific Ocean.
The Andes mountains run across the country, with three
ranges: Occidental, Central and Oriental. Other independent mountain formations
include Serranía de la Macarena in the Eastern Plains, rising abruptly to around
8,250 ft. (2500 m), and the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta on the Caribbean coast,
considered the highest coastal sierra in the world, with its Pico Cristobal Colon and Pico
Simon Bolivar (elevation: 19,000 ft. - 5,775 m.) being the highest elevations in Colombia.
Colombia is very rich in natural resources likepetroleum,
natural gas, coal, iron ore, nickel, gold, copper, emeralds and hydropower. Major
rivers include Magdalena, Cauca, Caqueta, Putumayo, Atrato and Vaupes.