Antarctica is this really cool (pun unintended) continent tucked away at the bottom of the Earth. And while it’s being explored left, right and center, the place has always fascinated me. While I plan to take the cruise some day to visit Antarctica, for me, right now these facts about Antarctica give me the virtual tour of the place. Check out these 19 cool and interesting facts about Antarctica.
#1 Antarctica is actually a desert, and the largest in the world.
Well, always a question arises that Is Antarctica a desert? Well, we have a answer to this. Yes, Antarctica is a desert and the largest in the world. The two largest desert are in polar areas. The Antarctica Polar desert covers the continent of Antarctica . The second largest is Arctic Polar Desert.
#2 If all the ice on Antarctica melted, sea levels would rise about by some 216 ft. h
If we keep on burning fossil fuels then global warming will eventually melt all the ice. And ice will be melted at poles and mountain tops raising sea level about 216 ft. This is an interest yet scary fact.
#3 Antarctic Treaty
Antarctica is governed according to the Antarctic Treaty, signed by 12 countries in 1959. Another 38 have signed the treaty since. The treaty prohibits military activities and mineral mining, nuclear explosions and nuclear waste disposal, and supports scientific research, and protection of the continent. Phew!
#4 Antarctica is the only continent without reptiles.
Reptiles and snakes are cold blooded animals that don’t have the ability to generate heat on their own. This makes the survival for these animals hard as they primarily warm themselves by absorbing sun shine.
#5 Bloody Water Fall
A waterfall in Antarctica, runs red. Initially thought to be so because of a particular kind of algae, it was later discovered that the color was such due to an iron oxide-tainted plume of saltwater.
#6 Trinity Church
Trinity Church was opened in 2004 at the Russian Bellingshausen Station.
#7 Antarctica has only one ATM. And an airport!
It also has a bar.
#8 There are no polar bears in Antarctica, but the continent has an abundant population of penguins.
You will have to go to Arctic/Canada to see Polar Bears.
#10 Ice melting in Antarctica has caused a small shift in gravity in the region.
#11 The ice sheet of Antarctica has been around for at least 40 million years.
#12 The highest temperature ever recorded
The highest temperature is in Antarctica that is 63.5 degrees Fahrenheit.
#13 Mount Erebus is the southernmost active volcano on the planet. Frighteningly, it spews crystals.
#14 The largest iceberg ever measured in Antarctic was bigger than Jamaica.
But it broke away from Antarctica in 2000.
#15 Antarctica has its own domain
Just like India has .in, Antarctica has its own domain .aq. The domain can only be obtained by organizations working in the region.
#16 21 July 1983 was recorded as the coldest day in Antarctica
We can’t even imagine how much cold it was (nor we want to!). The temperature was recorded around -82.9 C.
#17 Fresh Water
Antarctica stores almost 70% of fresh water on globe.
#18 No Permanent Residence
Yes, its true there are no permanent residents in Antarctica. People only go there for expedition, projects, basically work purpose. There are about 4000 people in summers and 1000 in winters.
#19 Some conditions required to work in Antarctica
You are not allowed to work in Antarctica unless your wisdom teeth and appendix are removed. This is one of the most interesting facts about Antarctica based on an incident that happened in 1961. A Russian doctor named Leonid Rogozov had appendicitis and had to remove his appendix himself since he was the only doctor during the expedition. This has kind of become a precautionary step.
Have we missed any facts about Antarctica? Share with us by leaving a comment below.