landscape view of jerusalem in israel including the dome of the rock
Israel

What Continent is Israel in? [+Why Asia Seems Incorrect]

Have you ever wondered what continent Israel is in? It’s an interesting question that often trips up travelers and geography enthusiasts alike.

The answer is Asia, although this may surprise you as Israel sits on the boundary between two continents. While most people agree that Israel is located in the Middle East, when it comes to continents, Asia is the answer.

Although I visited Israel myself, I often forget that I have technically been to Asia. Let’s explore why Israel doesn’t seem to be an Asian country.

In which continent is Israel located?

Technically speaking, most geographers place Israel within the Middle East. However, the Middle East itself is not a continent. It is regarded as a subcontinent.

Israel is located in southwest Asia. Due to its location along a continental divide that separates Asia from Africa, some people consider Israel part of both continents. Israel is the only country in Asia that shares a border with the continent of Africa.

Despite this placement within Asia, there are still those who consider it part of Africa due to its close proximity and connection with countries like Egypt.

world map highlighting the continent of asia
Continent of Asia

Is Israel a country?

Israel is a country. The modern state of Israel was established in 1948 after World War II, making it one of the youngest countries in the world. Today, it is an important regional power and one of the most technologically advanced countries in the Middle East.

Despite being in Asia geographically, many people would argue that Israel belongs culturally in Europe or even Africa. This is due to its history of colonization by European nations such as The British Empire.

Israel’s prime location on the Silk Road and as a major port in the Roman Empire has created a long history of shared cultural influences.

gate in Jerusalem Israel

What countries border Israel?

Israel is bordered by Syria and Lebanon to the north, Jordan to the east, and Egypt to the southwest. The Mediterranean Sea makes its western border, and the Dead Sea is shared by Jordan on the eastern border.

Israel is the only country on the Asian continent that shares a border with the continent of Africa.

Israel is one of the smallest countries in the world. In terms of landmass, it covers approximately 8,000 square miles. That’s less than California’s Central Valley.

map showing the countries that border israel

Is the Middle East in Asia?

Yes. The majority of the countries that are considered part of the Middle East are in Asia.

There are 17 countries that are widely accepted as part of the Middle East. However, sometimes up to 24 countries are classified as Middle Eastern.

Sometimes Turkey is included in the Middle East, making Europe one of the continents that make up the Middle East. Other times Egypt is included, adding the continent of Africa to the Middle East as well.

What Does This Mean for Travelers?

For travelers visiting or planning on visiting Israel, it’s important to remember that while geographically placed within Asia, there are heavy cultural influences from Africa and Europe.

This means that when you visit certain parts of this unique country, you may experience a mixture of cultures from three continents.

It is also important to understand Israel’s geographic position and how this has influenced its past and current political and social climate.

people walking the ramparts in jerusalem israel with a tower in the background

So there we have it – when people ask “what continent is Israel in?” it’s because despite being physically situated in Asia – many cultural elements make it feel like an African or European nation as well.

With its rich biblical history, plus a vibrant culture all its own – the Asian country of Israel is definitely worth a visit.

FAQ

Is Israel in Asia?

Yes. Israel is located in the Middle East, which is a subregion of the continent of Asia.

What continent is Tel Aviv in?

Tel Aviv is located in the Middle East, which is a subregion of the continent of Asia.

What continent is the Gaza Strip in?

The Gaza Strip is located in the Middle East, which is a subregion of the continent of Asia. Its borders touch the continent of Africa where it meets Egypt.

What continent is the West Bank in?

The West Bank of Israel is located in the Middle East, which is a subregion of the continent of Asia.

What continent is Jerusalem in?

Jerusalem is located in the Middle East, which is a subregion of the continent of Asia.

What continent is Palestine in?

The Palestinian Territories are located in the Middle East, which is a subregion of the continent of Asia.

Is the Middle East a continent?

No. While the Middle East has a distinct history and culture, geographers recognize it as a subregion within Asia, thus part of the larger continent as a whole.

What continents make up the Middle East?

Asia, Africa, and Europe are the three continents that make up The Middle East.

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For Cassie, every destination deepens her love for God. Her mission is to inspire that same love in others. Hang around and find something to inspire your next adventure!

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