- With a population of just 1,106 people for an area of 5,500,000 sq mi (14,200,000 sq km), Antarctica is the least densely populated continent.
- The "Antarctic ice sheet" covers the continent with ice averaging 1.0 mi (1.6 km) thick.
- If all of Antarctica's ice were melted, the world's sea levels would rise about 200 feet (60 m).
- Antarctica's coastline is 17,968 km (11,165 mi) long and consists mostly of ice shelfs and ice walls.
- During the coldest time of the year, Antarctica's average temperature is −81 °F (−63 °C).
- Antarctica was not recorded in history until a Russian expedition in 1820, making it the last region on Earth to be discovered.
- Antarctica means "opposite to the Arctic". While Aristotle already spoke about an "Antarctic" region, it was formally used as a continental name in the 1890s.
- Divided by the Transantarctic Mountains, West and East Antarctica correspond to the Western and Eastern Hemispheres relative to the Greenwich meridian.
- Antarctica, as it is today, was formed 25 million years ago. Before that, it was part of the supercontinent Gondwana.
- Fossils show that subtropical forests existed on Antarctica during the "age of the dinosaurs", about 100 million years ago.
- Penguins --Emperor, Adélie, King, Chinstrapand, Gentoo--, orcas, colossal squids, fur seals and blue whales are part of Antarctica's sea life.
- Plants are very limited in Antarctica; the flora largely consists of bryophytes. About 1,150 species of fungi have been recorded.
- Phytoplankton are abundant and many species of marine animals rely on it.
- Activity in Antarctica is mostly restricted to research. There is almost no economic activity, except for some fishing and small-scale tourism.
- During the summer, more than 4,000 scientists --from geologists to biologists, oceanographers, glaciologists, and meteorologists-- operate research stations and conduct experiments, which goes down to around 1,000 during the winter.
- The hole in the ozone layer was discovered at the Halley Station in 1985 by three British scientists.
- West Antarctica is one of the fastest-warming regions on Earth, according to a 2012 study.
Antarctica is the only
There are no polar bears in Antarctica,