Asia is the central and
eastern part of Eurasia, comprising approximately fifty countries.
Asia is joined to Africa by the Isthmus of Suez and to Europe
by a long border generally following the Ural Mountains.
mean elevation of the continent is 950 m, the largest of any
in the world. The plateau and mountainous areas broadly sweep SW-NW
across Asia, climaxing in the high Tibetan Plateau, rising to
the highest peaks in the world in the Himalaya. To the north
west lie plains, while to the south lie the geologically distinct
areas of the Arabian peninsula, Indian subcontinent and Malay
peninsula. Large numbers of islands lie south east of the