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World Rivers

Amazon River Delta

What is a river?

A river is a flowing, moving stream of water. Usually a river feeds water into an ocean, lake, pond, or even another river. Rivers can vary in size and there is no hard definition or rule on how big a flow of water must be to be categorized as a river. Water from a river can come from rain, melting snow, lakes, ponds, or even glaciers. Rivers flow downhill from their source. They are considered part of the freshwater biome.


Nile River going through Cairo, Egypt

The 10 longest rivers in the world are:

1. Nile - The Nile River is 4,135 miles long. It is located in the continent of Africa, mostly in the countries of Egypt and Sudan. It flows north into the Mediterranean Sea.

2. Amazon - The Amazon River is 3,980 miles long. It is located in the continent of South America and flows through several countries including Brazil, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Ecuador. It ends at the Atlantic Ocean.

3. Yangtze - Located in China, the Yangtze River is 3,917 miles long and flows into the East China Sea.

4. Mississippi, Missouri - The river system of the Mississippi River and the Missouri Rivers is the longest river system in North America at 3,902 miles. It flows south into the Gulf of Mexico.

5. Yenisei - The Yenisei River starts in Mongolia and flows through Russia to the Kara Sea in the Arctic Ocean. It is 3,445 miles long.

6. Yellow - At 3,398 miles long, the Yellow river is the 6th longest river in the world, but only the 2nd longest in China. It ends at the Bohai Sea.

7. Ob, Irtysh - The river system of the Ob River and the Irtysh River is 3,364 miles long. It flows through Russia, China, and Mongolia on its way to the Gulf of Ob.

8. Congo - The Congo River flows 2,922 miles through several countries in Africa before reaching the Atlantic Ocean.

9. Amur - The Amur River is 2,763 miles long. It flows through Russia, China, and Mongolia and ends at the Sea of Okhotsk.

10. Lena - The Lena River flows through Russia on its way to the Laptev Sea in the Arctic Ocean. It is 2,736 miles long.

Mississippi River

Mississippi River

Fun Facts About World Rivers
  • There are 76 rivers in the world over 1000 miles long.
  • A lot of people think that rivers always flow south, but 4 of the 10 longest rivers in the world flow north.
  • The United States alone has around 3.5 million miles of rivers.
  • Four of the top 10 longest rivers flow through Russia at some point.
  • Four of the top 10 longest rivers flow through China at some point as well.
  • World Rivers have been a great source of trade and transport throughout human history.

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