Similar Countries with Extremely Different Geography

For the most part, countries with that are close in proximity to each other tend to also share many other characteristics. Still, there are some unique pairs of countries that are quite similar, except that their geography is far different. A list of these countries was developed by analyzing the data from the Country Similarity Index, which weighs equally five major aspects of countries: their demographics, culture, politics, infrastructure, and geography. The following six pairs of countries were found to have a biggest difference between their geography and their other aspects, including demographics, culture, politics, and infrastructure.

AUSTRALIA-UNITED KINGDOM

Australia and the United Kingdom have a huge amount in common. Australia was once a British colony. The two countries still even share a monarch. As a result, both countries have English as their official language. Most of their people have European ancestry. They are also mostly Christian, although they are not especially religious. Furthermore, they have a high standard of living and their infrastructure is well developed. Both countries drive on the left side of the road.

However, Australia is on a different continent on the opposite side of the globe. As a result, their flora and fauna is vastly different from the United Kingdom. Australia’s climate is also much drier and hotter. While most of the land in the United Kingdom is used for agriculture, a low percentage of Australia’s land is used for farming. Furthermore, Australia is far less densely populated and a lower percentage of its land is built up.

ARGENTINA-COSTA RICA

Argentina and Costa Rica were both colonies of Spain. Their people are mostly Catholic and the majority natively speak Spanish. The average age of their people is nearly the same. They also have a similar level of education. Their laws are also alike. Both allow same sex marriage and have decriminalized marijuana for personal use. Their governments both use the presidential system of government and their courts follow Civil Law.

Despite these similarities, Argentina is located in South America, while Costa Rica is part of North America. Costs Rica’s climate is hot and humid, while Argentina’s is much cooler and drier. Costa Rica’s land has dense tropical rainforests, whereas Argentina’s landscape is mostly grasslands and farmlands. Their agriculture is far different as well. Argentina’s most common crop is wheat, while Costa Rica grows a lot of coffee, sugar, and palm oil. It is also less densely populated.

CANADA-NEW ZEALAND

Canada and New Zealand have a lot amount in common. Both countries were once British colonies. The two countries still even have the same monarch. As a result, both countries have English as their official language. Most of their people have European ancestry. They are also mostly Christian, although they are not especially religious. Furthermore, they have a high standard of living and their infrastructure is well developed. Both countries have a high number of vehicles per capita.

However, Canada is in North America, while New Zealand is located in the South Pacific Ocean. As a result, their flora and fauna is vastly different. Most of Canada’s forests are coniferous, whereas broadleaf forests dominate New Zealand. On average, Canada’s climate is much colder than New Zealand’s. It also gets significantly less precipitation. Furthermore, Canada is less densely populated than New Zealand. It also has a much lower percentage of farmland.

IRAQ-LEBANON

Most people in Iraq and Lebanon natively speak Arabic. These countries also have many Muslims. The majority of their people have Caucasian ancestry. Their technology standards are also alike. Both countries drive on the right and most of their railroad tracks are standard gauge. The also use the same electrical voltage and frequency. Their GDP per capita is also similar. Both countries do not allow abortion or same sex marriage. They also allow polygamy and alcohol.

However, Iraq is nearly landlocked, while most of Lebanon’s land is close to the Mediterranean coast. Iraq also gets far less rainfall, so most of its landscape is barren desert. Lebanon’s farms more often grow olives than Iraq’s. Furthermore, less than 10% of Iraq’s land is considered to be mountainous, while over 80% of Lebanon’s land is. Lebanon is also far more densely populated and has a higher percentage of urban land than Iraq.

DATA TABLE

COUNTRIESDEMO.CULT.GOV.INFRA.GEO.AVG. – GEO.DIFF.
AUSTRALIA UNITED KINGDOM18.417.215.515.87.916.7-8.8
ARGENTINA COSTA RICA17.516.214.313.97.215.5-8.3
COSTA RICA URUGUAY17.316.014.214.17.415.4-8.0
AUSTRALIA NETHERLANDS17.213.413.414.96.814.7-7.9
AUSTRALIA IRELAND17.816.414.715.88.316.2-7.9
CHILE COSTA RICA18.416.714.413.88.115.8-7.7
AUSTRALIA SWITZERLAND16.812.812.714.46.714.2-7.5
AUSTRALIA CANADA18.016.415.814.78.916.2-7.3
CANADA NEW ZEALAND17.116.515.814.18.615.9-7.3
AUSTRALIA AUSTRIA16.612.612.414.57.014.0-7.0
AUSTRALIA NORWAY17.213.013.115.57.714.7-7.0
ARGENTINA PANAMA17.216.213.512.17.814.8-7.0
ARGENTINA EL SALVADOR17.015.413.712.57.714.7-7.0
MEXICO URUGUAY17.116.213.814.28.415.3-6.9
PANAMA URUGUAY16.815.813.214.28.115.0-6.9
ARGENTINA DOMINICAN REPUBLIC16.715.514.012.97.914.8-6.9
BELGIUM CANADA16.814.213.714.27.914.7-6.8
CANADA UNITED KINGDOM17.216.115.114.08.815.6-6.8
AUSTRALIA BELGIUM16.512.213.514.27.314.1-6.8
IRAQ LEBANON16.715.114.515.28.615.4-6.8

(Minimum 63% similarity)

Do you agree with this list? Any other pairs of countries that you would add?
Please leave any thoughts in the comments section.

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