Sunday, December 15, 2013

Geography of Croatia

Most of Croatia is lowlands, with elevations of less than 200 metres (660 ft) above sea level recorded in 53.42% of the country. Most of the lowlands are found in the country's northern regions, especially in Slavonia, representing a part of the Continental Croatia in Pannonian Basin. Areas with elevations of 200 to 500 metres (660 to 1,600 ft) above sea level encompass 25.61% of Croatia's territory, and the areas between 500 and 1,000 metres (1,600 and 3,300 ft) above sea level cover 17.11% of the country. A further 3.71% of the land is 1,000 to 1,500 metres (3,300 to 4,900 ft) above sea level, and only 0.15% of Croatia's territory is elevated greater than 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) above sea level. The greatest concentration of ground at relatively high elevations is found in the Lika and Gorski Kotar areas in the Dinaric Alps (Adriatic Croatia), but such areas are found in all regions of Croatia to some extent. The Pannonian Basin and the Dinaric Alps, along with the Adriatic Basin, represent major geomorphological parts of Croatia.
Croatia is located in Central and Southeast Europe, bordering Hungary to the northeast, Serbia to the east,Bosnia and Herzegovina to the southeast, Montenegroto the southeast, the Adriatic Sea to the southwest andSlovenia to the northwest. It lies mostly between latitudes 42° and 47° N and longitudes 13° and 20° E. Part of the territory in the extreme south surroundingDubrovnik is a practical exclave connected to the rest of the mainland by territorial waters, but separated on land by a short coastline strip belonging to Bosnia and Herzegovina around Neum.
The territory covers 56,594 square kilometres (21,851 square miles), consisting of 56,414 square kilometres (21,782 square miles) of land and 128 square kilometres (49 square miles) of water. It is the 127th largest country in the world.[82] Elevation ranges from the mountains of the Dinaric Alps with the highest point of the Dinara peak at 1,831 metres (6,007 feet) near the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina in the south to the shore of the Adriatic Sea which makes up its entire southwest border. Insular Croatia consists of over a thousand islands and islets varying in size, 48 of which are permanently inhabited. The largest islands are Cres and Krk, each of them having an area of around 405 square kilometres (156 square miles).
The hilly northern parts of Hrvatsko Zagorje and the flat plains of Slavonia in the east (which is part of the Pannonian Basin) are traversed by major rivers such as SavaDravaKupa and Danube. The Danube, Europe's second longest river, runs through the city of Vukovar in the extreme east and forms part of the border with Serbia. The central and southern regions near the Adriatic coastline and islands consist of low mountains and forested highlands. Natural resources found in the country in quantities significant enough for production include oil, coal, bauxite, low-grade iron ore, calcium, gypsum, natural asphalt, silica, mica, clays, salt and hydropower.
Karst topography makes up about half of Croatia and is especially prominent in the Dinaric Alps.[83] There are a number of deep caves in Croatia, 49 of which are deeper than 250 m (820.21 ft), 14 of them deeper than 500 m (1,640.42 ft) and three deeper than 1,000 m (3,280.84 ft). Croatia's most famous lakes are the Plitvice lakes, a system of 16 lakes with waterfalls connecting them over dolomite andlimestone cascades. The lakes are renowned for their distinctive colours, ranging from turquoise to mint green, grey or blue.