Geography of Mauritania – The Ultimate Free Guide 2021

  • Mauritania is a country in Northwest Africa. It is the twenty-eighth largest country or dependency in the world, the eleventh largest sovereign state in Africa and the largest country lying entirely below an altitude of 1,000 metres (3,300 ft).
  • The country’s name derives from the name of the ancient Berber kingdom of Mauretania, located in present-day Morocco and Algeria.
  • Mauritania became independent from French West Africa in 1960. Since then, it has experienced recurrent coups and periods of authoritarian military rule.
  • Approximately 90% of Mauritania’s land is in the Sahara. As a result, most of its inhabitants live in the south of the country, where precipitation is slightly higher. The capital and largest city is Nouakchott, located on the Atlantic coast.
  • Mauritania has been criticized for its poor human rights record, including for Mauritania’s continued practice of slavery, a result of a historical caste system between the Bidhan and Haratin, despite abolishing it in 1981 as the last country in the world to do so and criminalizing it in 2007.

Geography of Mauritania

Large Detailed Map of Mauritania


Maghreb region


1,030,000 km2





Bordering Countries:

  • It bordered by the:
    • Atlantic Ocean to the west,
    • Western Sahara to the North and northwest,
    • Algeria to the northeast,
    • Mali to the east and southeast, and
    • Senegal to the southwest.



Geographical Coordinates:

18°09′N 15°58′W

World Region or Continent:


General Terrain:

Mauritania, a country in the western region of the continent of Africa, is generally flat, its 1,030,700 square kilometres forming vast, arid plains broken by occasional ridges and clifflike outcroppings. A series of scarps face southwest, longitudinally bisecting these plains in the center of the country.

Geographical Low Point:

Sebkha de Ndrhamcha -3 m

Geographical High Point:

Kediet Ijill 910 m


  • The climate is characterized by extremes in temperature and by meager and irregular rainfall.
  • Annual temperature variations are small, although diurnal variations can be extreme.
  • The harmattan, a hot, dry, and often dust-laden wind, blows from the Sahara throughout the long dry season and is the prevailing wind, except along the narrow coastal strip, which is influenced by oceanic trade winds.
  • Most rain falls during the short rainy season, from July to September.

Major cities:

  • Nouakchott
  • Nouadhibou
  • Néma
  • Kaédi
  • Rosso
  • Kiffa
  • Zouérat
  • Atar
  • Tékane
  • Sélibaby

Major Land forms:

Mauritania has a generally flat landscape with vast plains that are punctuated by the occasional ridge or cliff-like outcropping. Bisecting the plains in the center of the country is a series of sandstone plateaus giving way to spring-fed oases

Major Rivers and Lakes:

Major Rivers:

  • Khatt Atui
  • Oued Seguellil
  • Sénégal River
  • Gorgol River
  • Gorgol Noir
  • Gorgol Blanc
  • Oued Garfa
  • Karakoro River
  • Kolinbiné River

Major Lakes:

  • Lake D’Aleg,
  • Lake Rkiz.

Natural Resources:

  • Iron ore,
  • Gypsum,
  • Copper,
  • Phosphate,
  • Diamonds,
  • Gold,
  • Oil, and
  • Fish

Major Geographical Features:

Biomes & Ecosystems:

  • Marine
  • Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
  • Freshwater
  • Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
  • Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
  • Flooded Grasslands and Savannas
  • Tropical and Subtropical Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
  • Marine
  • Freshwater
  • Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
  • Freshwater
  • Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
  • Tropical and Subtropical Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands.


  • Mauritania is a generally flat country, with vast arid plains interrupted by impressive rocky plateaus and escarpments. These give rise to some of the most spectacular scenery found anywhere in both the Sahel and the Sahara.


North Atlantic Ocean


Arguin Island

Mountain Ranges:

  • Kediet ej Jill
  • El Metreyoûgha

Administrative Map of Mauritania

Administrative Map of Mauritania

Mauritania Location on World Map

Mauritania location on World Map

See Also:


Naveed Tawargeri

Hi, I'm Naveed Tawargeri, and I'm the owner and creator of this blog. I'm a Software Developer with a passion for Programming. 

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