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Geography

Sunday, 24 June 2007

The Republic of Poland (Rzeczpospolita Polska) is one of the largest countries in Central Europe, bordering Russia, Lithuania, Belarus, Ukraine, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Germany. Its northern frontier on the Baltic Sea gives it easy access to Scandinavian and North Sea ports. Poland`s shape is roughly square, measuring 400-440 miles across.

The capital, Warsaw, is situated in the center of the country. Poland`s surface area of 120,727 sq. miles ranks eighth in Europe. The country lies almost entirely on the North European Plain and is a land of gentle relief, rarely rising above 350 feet except along the southern border with the Sudety and Carpathian mountain ranges. Rysy is the highest mountain peak, 8200 feet above sea level.

Approximately one-fifth of the land is maintained as pasture and meadows. About 27% of the total area is covered by forest. The longest rivers which cross the country northward are the Vistula (667 miles in length) in the center, and the Odra (530 miles) which flows along Poland`s western border.

Territory:

  • total area of the country -312,685 km2 (120,727sqm)
  • territorial sea - 8,7 thousands km2

Poland is the 9th biggest country in Europe, and 63rd in the world.


Neighbouring countries (border length):

  • Russia (Kaliningrad District) (210 km)
  • Lithuania (103 km)
  • Byelorussia (416 km)
  • Ukraine (529 km)
  • Slovakia (539 km)
  • Czech Republic (790 km)
  • Germany (467 km)
  • Length of sea border (528 km)

Total length of national border 3582 km

 

Natural Environment


Poland is mostly lowland.
The average height equals 173 m. Low-laying parts of the country (lower than 300 m) constitute about 91,3 % of Poland’s territory, uplands (300-500 m) – 5,6 %, and mountains (over 500 m) only 3,1 %.

Despite the majority of lowland Polish landscape is very varied. Poland is famous for its lakes (there are over 9300 of them) and rivers (main rivers of Poland are Vistula (Wisla) and Odra).

 

Climate:Continental; moderate, changeable weather.

Average temperatures:

  • January
    on the coast and the West from 0 to -1
    North-East from - 4,5 to - 5,5
    In the mountains (South)- 7
  • July:
    on the coast 16,5
    In the South 19

Average annual rainfall: 600 mm

The highest mountain`s peak: Rysy (Tatra mountains) 2499 m.

The longest river: Wisla (Vistula) 1047 km.

The biggest lake: Sniardwy (Mazury Lake District)b13,8 km2

The deepest lake: Hancza 108 m

 


National Parks: First national parks in Poland were established in the period between the World WarI and II. There are 23 national parks in Poland and they cover about 1% of the country`s area. The majority of landscape types and ecosystems found in Poland are represented within the parks.

  • Babia Gora National Park
  • Bialowieza National Park
  • Biebrza National Park
  • Bieszczady National Park
  • Bory Tucholskie National Park
  • Drawa National Park
  • Gorce national Park
  • Gory Stolowe National Park
  • Kampinos National Park
  • Karkonosze National Park
  • Magura National Park
  • Narew National Park
  • Ojcow National Park
  • Pieniny National Park
  • Polesie National Park
  • Roztocze National Park
  • Slowinski Nationa Park
  • Swietokrzyski National Park
  • Tatra National Park
  • 'Warta River-Mouth' National Park
  • Wielkopolski National Park
  • Wigry National Park
  • Wolin National Park
 

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