The Americas, which are also collectively called America, are a landmass comprising the totality of North and South America. The Americas make up most of the land in Earth's Western Hemisphere and comprise the New World. Along with their associated islands, the Americas cover 8% of Earth's total surface area and 28.4% of its land area. The topography is dominated by the American Cordillera, a long chain of mountains that runs the length of the west coast. The flatter eastern side of the Americas is dominated by large river basins, such as the Amazon, St. Lawrence River–Great Lakes basin, Mississippi, and La Plata. Since the Americas extend 14,000 km from north to south, the climate and ecology vary widely, from the arctic tundra of Northern Canada, Greenland, and Alaska, to the tropical rain forests in Central America and South America. Humans first settled the Americas from Asia between 42,000 and 17,000 years ago. A second migration of Na-Dene speakers followed later from Asia.

Read more in the app

Americas’ first cowboys were enslaved Africans, ancient cow DNA suggests

When Did Humans First Occupy the Americas? Ask the Sloth Bones.

Study finds over four million people from the Americas, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand have consumed ayahuasca at some point in their lives

Earliest evidence of wine consumption in the Americas found in Caribbean

Butterflies First Appeared in What is Now the Americas, Research Shows

Gene study points to link between Stone Age China and the Americas

Ice Age Odyssey: Tracing Ancient Human Migrations From China to the Americas and Japan

Evidence of Ice Age human migrations from China to the Americas and Japan

Tuberculosis May Have Been In The Americas For Thousands Of Years

Origin: A Genetic History Of The Americas By Jennifer Raff — Review

Changing climate conditions likely facilitated early human migration to the Americas at key intervals, research suggests

A Historic Discovery: Archaeologists Uncover Oldest Known Projectile Points in the Americas

Researchers identify oldest bone spear point In the Americas

Lasers reveal sites used as the Americas’ oldest known star calendars

Bering Land Bridge - Likely Used By First Humans To Come To The Americas - Formed Surprisingly Late During Last Ice Age

Archaeologists uncover oldest known projectile points in the Americas

Archaeologists uncover oldest known projectile points in the Americas

A spider monkey’s remains tell a story of ancient diplomacy in the Americas

Oldest human-made structure in the Americas is older than the Egyptian pyramids

Ancient DNA Illuminates the History of Horses in the Americas