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Straits

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Geography

Strait of Hormuz

The Strait of Hormuz is a strait between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. It provides the only sea passage from the Persian Gulf to the open ocean and is one of the world's most strategically important choke points. On the north coast lies Iran, and on the south coast the United Arab Emirates and Musandam, an exclave of Oman. At its narrowest, the strait has a width of 29 nautical miles (54 km).

Geography

Strait of Gibraltar

The Strait of Gibraltar is a narrow strait that connects the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea and separates Gibraltar and Peninsular Spain in Europe from Morocco and Ceuta (Spain) in Africa. The name comes from the Rock of Gibraltar, which in turn originates from the Arabic Jebel Tariq named after Tariq ibn Ziyad. It is also known as the Straits of Gibraltar, the Gut of Gibraltar, the STROG in naval use, and Bab Al Maghrib, "Gate of the West". In the Middle Ages, Muslims called it Al-Zuqaq, "The Passage", the Romans called it Fretum Gatitanum, and in the ancient world it was known as the "Pillars of Hercules".

Geography

English Channel

The English Channel, also called simply the Channel, is the body of water that separates southern England from northern France and links the southern part of the North Sea to the Atlantic Ocean. It is the busiest shipping area in the world.

Geography

Puget Sound

Puget Sound is a sound along the northwestern coast of the U.S. state of Washington, an inlet of the Pacific Ocean, and part of the Salish Sea. It is a complex estuarine system of interconnected marine waterways and basins, with one major and two minor connections to the open Pacific Ocean via the Strait of Juan de Fuca—Admiralty Inlet being the major connection and Deception Pass and Swinomish Channel being the minor.

Geography

Bering Strait

The Bering Strait is a strait of the Pacific, which borders with the Arctic to north. It is located between Russia and the United States. Named after Vitus Bering, a Danish explorer in the service of the Russian Empire, it lies slightly south of the Arctic Circle being at about 65° 40' N latitude. The present Russia-US east-west boundary is at 168° 58' 37" W.

Geography

Bosporus

The Bosporus or Bosphorus ; Greek pronunciation: [bós.po.ros]; also known as The Strait of Istanbul; Turkish: İstanbul Boğazı, is a narrow, natural strait and an internationally significant waterway located in northwestern Turkey. It forms part of the continental boundary between Europe and Asia, and separates Asian Turkey from European Turkey. The world's narrowest strait used for international navigation, the Bosporus connects the Black Sea with the Sea of Marmara, and, by extension via the Dardanelles, the Aegean and Mediterranean seas.

Geography

Dardanelles

The Dardanelles, also known from Classical Antiquity as the Hellespont (; Greek: Ἑλλήσποντος, Hellespontos, literally "Sea of Helle"), is a narrow, natural strait and internationally-significant waterway in northwestern Turkey that forms part of the continental boundary between Europe and Asia, and separates Asian Turkey from European Turkey. One of the world's narrowest straits used for international navigation, the Dardanelles connects the Sea of Marmara with the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas, while also allowing passage to the Black Sea by extension via the Bosphorus. The Dardanelles is 61 kilometres (38 mi) long, and 1.2 to 6 kilometres wide, averaging 55 metres (180 ft) deep with a maximum depth of 103 metres (338 ft) at its narrowest point abreast the city of Çanakkale.

Geography

Kattegat

The Kattegat is a 30,000 km2 (12,000 sq mi) sea area bounded by the Jutlandic peninsula in the west, the Danish straits islands of Denmark to the south and the provinces of Västergötland, Scania, Halland and Bohuslän in Sweden in the east. The Baltic Sea drains into the Kattegat through the Danish Straits. The sea area is a continuation of the Skagerrak and may be seen as a bay of the Baltic Sea or the North Sea or, as in traditional Scandinavian usage, neither of these.

Geography

Strait of Malacca

The Strait of Malacca or Straits of Malacca is a narrow, 550 mi (890 km) stretch of water between the Malay Peninsula and the Indonesian island of Sumatra. As the main shipping channel between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean, it is one of the most important shipping lanes in the world. It is named after the Malacca Sultanate that ruled over the archipelago between 1400 and 1511.

Geography

East River

The East River is a salt water tidal estuary in New York City. The waterway, which is actually not a river despite its name, connects Upper New York Bay on its south end to Long Island Sound on its north end. It separates the borough of Queens on Long Island from the Bronx on the North American mainland, and also divides Manhattan from Queens and Brooklyn, which are also on Long Island. Because of its connection to Long Island Sound, it was once also known as the Sound River. The tidal strait changes its direction of flow frequently, and is subject to strong fluctuations in its current, which are accentuated by its narrowness and variety of depths. The waterway is navigable for its entire length of 16 miles (26 km), and was historically the center of maritime activities in the city, although that is no longer the case.

Nature and flora, Geography

Firth of Forth

The Firth of Forth is the estuary (firth) of several Scottish rivers including the River Forth. It meets the North Sea with Fife on the north coast and Lothian on the south. It was known as Bodotria in Roman times. In the Norse sagas it was known as the Myrkvifiörd.

Geography

Strait of Magellan

The Strait of Magellan, also called the Straits of Magellan, is a navigable sea route in southern Chile separating mainland South America to the north and Tierra del Fuego to the south. The strait is the most important natural passage between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

Geography

Drake Passage

The Drake Passage or Mar de Hoces—Sea of Hoces—is the body of water between South America's Cape Horn and the South Shetland Islands of Antarctica. It connects the southwestern part of the Atlantic Ocean with the southeastern part of the Pacific Ocean and extends into the Southern Ocean.

Geography

Bab-el-Mandeb

The Bab-el-Mandeb is a strait located between Yemen on the Arabian Peninsula, and Djibouti and Eritrea in the Horn of Africa. It connects the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden.

Geography

Strait of Dover

The Strait of Dover or Dover Strait, historically known as the Dover Narrows ; Dutch: Nauw van Kales [nʌu̯ vɑn kaːˈlɛː] or Straat van Dover), is the strait at the narrowest part of the English Channel, marking the boundary between the Channel and North Sea, separating Great Britain from continental Europe. The shortest distance across the strait, 33.3 kilometres, is from the South Foreland, northeast of Dover in the English county of Kent, to Cap Gris Nez, a cape near to Calais in the French département of Pas-de-Calais. Between these points lies the most popular route for cross-channel swimmers. The entire strait is within the territorial waters of France and the United Kingdom, but a right of transit passage under the UNCLOS exists allowing unrestricted shipping.