In terms of bodies of water, rivers are among the most studied. A river is a large, natural body of water, that empties out into another larger, natural body of water. There are 165 major rivers found throughout the planet, and this does not include the thousands of smaller rivers that have been pinpointed. When it comes to studying rivers and truly understanding them, many people wonder about which are the largest. By taking a look at the data collected by scientists over the years, it is quite simple to come up with a top ten list for the longest rivers in the world.
1) The Nile River
Coming in at number one, you might have guessed, is the Nile River. Many people use the expression of “longer than the Nile” or “as long as the Nile River”, when describing just how lengthy something is. This expression did not come from nowhere, as this is widely known as the longest river in the world. In terms of measurements, the Nile River runs a whopping 4,160 miles. This river is located in Africa, the world’s largest continent, so it is only fitting. Historically, the Nile has been a large source of water for Egypt.
2) The Amazon
Another widely known body of water, which comes in at number two on this list, is the Amazon River. The very word Amazon is often used to describe large things and large people. The Amazon River measures 4,049 miles, coming up just short of the Nile River. The Amazon River is located in South America, and actually contains more water than any other river found on the planet. Some scientists have even stated that the Amazon might actually be the largest river in the world, and studies must be done in order to find this idea conclusive, or to eliminate it.
3) The Yangtze River
This River, found on the continent of Asia, spans 3,964 miles. It is the longest river on its continent, and runs through various parts of China. Many cities have been built around this city, thanks to its vast amount of water, and historically, civilizations have relied greatly on this river. Unique organisms, such as Chinese alligators and paddlefish inhabit this river, and the body of water brings in a variety of tourists each and every year. There are a number of protected areas of the river, to preserve its beauty and usefulness.
4) The Mississippi River
The United States stakes claim to the fourth largest river in the world, which is the Mississippi River. This is the largest river in North America, spanning 3,709 miles. It is also home to the largest drainage system on the continent, and it is bordered by ten different states, including Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas and Missouri. In the United States and previous North American civilizations, the river is known to have played a very important role in commerce and transport, which has allowed civilizations to exist, grow and thrive.
5) The Ob-Irtysh Rivers
This collection of rivers, found in Asia, are the fifth largest in the world, as they contain a length of 3,459 miles. A lot of tourism has been set up along this set of rivers, and it is unique, in that it spans across a lot of different climate zones. This makes for a lot of different situations, in which people throughout China are able to travel the river and use it to their benefit. This is a river that features a number of tributaries, bridges and portions that have been used for human problem solving and transportation.
6) The Yenisei-Angara-Selenga
This set of rivers, also found in Asia, runs 3,448 miles, and features a maximum depth of 80 feet. This river is bordered by a number of different lakes, cities and other localities.
7) The Yellow River
This river, also known as the Huang He, is a body of water found on the continent of Asia. This river measures 3,395 miles, making it the seventh largest river on the planet. It runs through China and a variety of states that are found within the republic of China. It is one of the largest bodies of water in Asia.
8) The Congo River
This river, located on the largest continent of Africa, is a body of water spanning 2,900 miles. It is not the longest river in the world, but it is the deepest, as it reaches depths of more than 720 feet.
9) Rio de la Plata – Parana
Coming in at number nine is this South American river, which has a total mileage span of 2,796. This river runs through the countries of Uruguay and Argentina, and features historically major ports, such as Buenos Aires, which still provides a major hub for this body of water.
10) Mekong River
Asian bodies of water have dominated this list, and the list of the longest rivers in the world, and closes out with yet another, with the Mekong River. The Mekong River spans 2,749 miles, which is just a little smaller than the Rio de Plata. This river runs through China, Laos, Thailand, Burma, Cambodia and Vietnam.
These bodies of water are masterful works of nature that allow people to converge upon it for a variety of reasons. These reasons include travel, commerce, drinking water, cleaning and more. Anybody interested in studying bodies of water will enjoy learning about these rivers, and will come away with great knowledge.