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Ethiopia, from Mountains to Desert to Tropical Forest

9.0N 38.7E

July 31st, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Ethiopia - June 3rd, 2009

Ethiopia - June 3rd, 2009

Ethiopia, the world’s 27th-largest country, has an area of 435,071 square miles (1,127,127 kmĀ²). Most of the country lies on the Horn of Africa, which is the eastern-most part of the African landmass. Bordering Ethiopia is Sudan to the west, Djibouti and Eritrea to the north, Somalia to the east, and Kenya to the south.

Within Ethiopia is a massive highland complex of mountains and dissected plateaus divided by the Great Rift Valley, which runs generally southwest to northeast and is surrounded by lowlands, steppes, or semi-desert.

The topography of Ethiopia ranges from several very high mountain ranges (the Semien Mountains and the Bale Mountains), to one of the lowest areas of land in Africa, the Danakil depression. This great diversity of terrain determines wide variations in climate, soils, natural vegetation, and settlement patterns.

Ethiopia is an ecologically diverse country, ranging from the deserts along the eastern border to the tropical forests in the south to extensive Afromontane in the northern and southwestern parts.

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