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What Countries Are in Central America?

Key Takeaway:

  • Central America is a region that connects North and South America, consisting of 7 countries: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama.
  • The borders of Central American countries have been shaped by historical events, including colonization and independence movements. The neighboring countries of Mexico and Colombia also have strong ties to the region.
  • In addition to Spanish, several indigenous languages are spoken in Central America, such as Maya and Nahuatl. Some Caribbean Creole languages are also spoken in Belize and Panama.

Overview of Central America

Central America is an attractive region known for its rich diversity of languages, fascinating history, and stunning geography. In this section, we will take a closer look at the region’s geography, history, and languages, revealing some intriguing details that will inspire travelers and learners alike.

Geography of Central America

Central America: an isthmus connecting North and South America. It consists of seven countries, each with its own unique geography. Beaches, forests, mountains, and volcanoes are all part of the scene. The table shows the land area, highest and lowest points, and coastlines of each country.

Biodiversity is a hallmark of the region. Tropical temperatures range from 60°F to 90°F year-round. Climate patterns vary, depending on winds from the Atlantic and Pacific, and elevation.

Central America’s history is full of drama – political drama, revolutions, and colorful characters. It’s a fascinating destination for travelers and students.

Country Land Area (sq km) Lowest Point (m) Highest Point (m) Coastline (km)
Belize 22,810 0 1,160 386
Costa Rica 51,060 0 3,819 1,290
El Salvador 20,720 0 2,730 307
Guatemala 108,430 0 4,211 400
Honduras 112,090 0 2,870 820
Nicaragua 120,340 0 2,438 910
Panama 75,420 0 3,475 2,490

History of Central America

Central America is situated in the middle of the map. It boasts a long history that dates back to pre-Columbian times. Ancient indigenous societies called it home for centuries before Europeans arrived in the 16th century. It’s a complicated story with many perspectives.

Spanish Conquistador came to the region in the 16th century and set up settlements in Mesoamerica. They forced their colonial system on locals, using religion and language. Central America was free from Spain between 1821-24. However, political unrest continued for a long time.

Central American culture is a blend of indigenous cultures and European beliefs. This can be seen in art, architecture, music and dance. The Guatemalan-Chiapas Highlands’ region is an example, where Mayan people form the majority and Catholicism is prominent. Across Central America, you can find Mayan ruins and colonial-era churches.

Central America’s history is complex. It includes pre-colonization indigenous backgrounds, Spanish Colonialism and modern narratives around national identities, governance and economic opportunities. It’s hard to understand this in just a few paragraphs or books.

Languages of Central America

Central America is a culturally diverse spot. It has a rich language heritage. Spanish is the official language for most countries. But the area also has many indigenous languages. 5 million people across several countries use Mayan languages. K’iche’, another Mayan language, is spoken by over 1 million people in Guatemala. Garifuna, with African and Arawak roots, is used in Honduras, Belize, Guatemala, and Nicaragua. Miskito and Sumo are two main indigenous languages by the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua and Honduras. Panama’s official language is Spanish. But English speakers live there due to US involvement in Canal Zone construction. Creole languages exist, too. These dialects are a mix of indigenous and European languages. They vary across Central America.

Spanish is a lingua franca, yet indigenous groups fight for recognition of their mother tongues. Language policies reflect these struggles for inclusivity. This aims to maintain linguistic diversity in this culturally rich region.

What countries are in Central America?

Central America is a region that connects North and South America, consisting of different countries with distinct characteristics. This section will explore the countries that make up Central America, including their borders and national borders. Moreover, we will see where exactly Central America is located on the map to have a better understanding of its geopolitical importance.

Borders and national borders

Central America is located in the southern part of North America. It comprises of seven countries: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama. These countries share common characteristics such as volcanic mountains and rainforests. They also share borders with each other and Mexico.

The borders of these Central American nations are special. They have their own history. Rules control how people cross from one country to another. Despite these differences, all the land borders between these countries have immigration officials who check documents like passports or visas.

The national boundaries in Central America are different from that of North or South America. This is because they were inherited from colonial powers. These boundaries don’t match with current geopolitical boundaries. This is why passport stamps do not always match with current political affiliations of regions visited within Central American nations.

The history of Central America’s borders has changed over time. Borders were made during revolutions against the Spanish crown. They were created after peace treaties and when territories gained sovereignty. They were also formed when specific regions were sectioned off to create individual states or provinces. This is why these borders are unique and crucial for each nation today.

Central America on the map

Central America is a one-of-a-kind area which links North and South America. It has seven countries and covers 202,000 sq. miles on the map. It’s located between the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea, with Mexico to the north and Colombia to the south. This region is prone to natural disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions.

Yet, Central America is known for its diverse wildlife and plants due to its exclusive geography. Borders have caused conflicts and tensions among the nations due to lack of clear definition or agreement.

Although geographically part of North America, Central America has strong ties to Latin American nations and Spanish language influences. Before visiting Central America, it’s essential to research each country’s geography. Every country offers its own attractions, like Mayan ruins in Honduras or traditional markets in Guatemala. Plus, checking local weather conditions is necessary.


Central America is a captivating and varied region that extends from Mexico’s southern boundary to Colombia’s northern edge. It is composed of seven countries, including Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. It has an incredible geography, ranging from highland plateaus to lowland rainforests. This diversified landscape encourages an extraordinary biodiversity with many types of mammals, birds, and reptiles.

Apart from its natural resources, Central America has a prosperous cultural legacy, influenced by the Caribbean, Mexico, and South America. Every country has its own unique customs, music, literature, cuisine, and handicrafts, even though they are geographically close to one another. This unique combination of Native American, European, and African heritage is reflected in the cultural variety, natural beauty, and rich history of the region.

To sum up, Central America provides an enthralling mix of nature and culture, which makes it an ideal destination for travelers who want to immerse themselves in remarkable experiences. Its stunning scenery, unique traditional customs, and rich history make it an area that is always worth exploring.

Some Facts About What Countries Are in Central America:

  • ✅ Central America is a subregion of the Americas consisting of seven countries: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. (Source: Wikipedia)
  • ✅ Spanish is the most widely spoken language in Central America, except in Belize where English is the official language. (Source: Britannica)
  • ✅ Central America experiences frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions due to tectonic forces. (Source: JICA website)
  • ✅ Central America is situated between North America and South America, separated from the former by the Gulf of Mexico and the latter by the Darien Gap in Colombia. (Source: Britannica)
  • ✅ The Mesoamerican biodiversity hotspot, an area of high species diversity and endemism, is located within the Central American region. (Source: Wikipedia)

FAQs about What Countries Are In Central America?

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