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List of U.S. states and territories by area

Size of US States by Area

The United States of America is a land of remarkable diversity, encompassing a vast expanse of territory that varies from sprawling plains to towering mountains, and from fertile valleys to pristine coastlines. The sheer size and geographical diversity of the U.S. are reflected in the varying land areas of its states. In this article, we delve into the fascinating world of state sizes, examining the topography, history, and unique features that contribute to the varying sizes of U.S. states.

Exploring the Dynamics: The varying sizes of U.S. states can be attributed to a multitude of factors, including historical boundaries, geographical features, and even political decisions. Western states like Nevada and Utah boast vast desert expanses, while states along the East Coast, such as Rhode Island and Delaware, are more compact due to their colonial origins and urban development.

Impact on Culture and Economy: The size of a state can profoundly influence its culture and economy. Larger states may offer more diverse industries, a wider range of natural resources, and unique regional identities. States with expansive land areas often embrace outdoor activities and ecotourism, while smaller states may focus on technology, education, and urban development.

From the largest to the smallest US states.

The United States is divided into 50 states, with 48 situated in the central region of the North American continent, referred to as the “contiguous United States.” Meanwhile, Alaska occupies the peninsula-like northwestern portion of North America, and Hawaii is a tropical archipelago nestled in the expanse of the Pacific Ocean.

Each state serves as a constituent political entity, collectively forming the United States.

Here is a comprehensive list of all 50 usa states ranked by their total land area, from largest to smallest:

Rank State Land Area (sq. miles) Census Region Notes
1 Alaska 663,267 West Largest state; stunning glaciers
2 Texas 268,596 South Vast and diverse landscapes
3 California 163,696 West Cultural and geographical diversity
Montana 147,040 West Picturesque landscapes
5 New Mexico 121,590 West Rich blend of cultures
6 Arizona 113,990 West Grand Canyon and desert beauty
7 Nevada 110,572 West Desert landscapes and entertainment
8 Colorado 104,094 West Majestic Rocky Mountains
9 Oregon 98,381 West Pacific coastline and lush forests
10 Wyoming 97,813 West Wide-open spaces and natural beauty
11 Michigan 96,714 Midwest Great Lakes and industrial history
12 Minnesota 86,936 Midwest Land of lakes and vibrant cities
13 Utah 84,899 West Unique red rock landscapes
14 Idaho 83,569 West Scenic wilderness areas
15 Kansas 82,277 Midwest Rolling plains and heartland culture
Nebraska 77,354 Midwest Expansive prairies and farming
17 South Dakota 77,116 Midwest Iconic Mount Rushmore and Badlands
18 North Dakota 70,698 Midwest Prairie landscapes and friendly people
19 Missouri 69,715 Midwest Gateway Arch and Mississippi River
20 Oklahoma 69,899 South Native American heritage
21 Washington 71,297 West Evergreen state with vibrant cities
22 Georgia 59,425 South Southern charm and historic significance
23 Iowa 56,272 Midwest Agriculture and heartland traditions
24 Illinois 57,913 Midwest Major urban centers and the Windy City
25 Wisconsin 65,496 Midwest Dairy farming and the Great Lakes
26 Florida 65,757 South Sunshine, beaches, and tourist attractions
27 Arkansas 53,180 South Ozark Mountains and historical sites
28 Alabama 52,420 South Civil Rights history and southern culture
29 Louisiana 52,378 South Cajun culture and vibrant cities
30 Mississippi 48,430 South Music, literature, and Southern hospitality
Pennsylvania 46,054 Northeast Historical significance and industrial legacy
32 Ohio 44,825 Midwest Industrial heritage and diverse cities
33 Virginia 42,775 South Colonial history and cultural diversity
34 New York 54,555 Middle Atlantic New York, known as the Empire State
35 North Carolina 53,819 South Diverse geography and coastal beauty
36 Tennessee 42,144 South Music heritage and scenic landscapes
37 Kentucky 40,409 South Horse racing and bourbon distilleries
38 Indiana 36,418 Midwest Home of the Indy 500 and college basketball
39 Maine 35,385 Northeast Rugged coastline and outdoor activities
40 South Carolina 32,020 South Historic sites and southern charm
41 West Virginia 24,230 South Appalachian Mountains and coal mining
Maryland 12,407 South Historical landmarks and Chesapeake Bay
43 Hawaii 10,932 West Beautiful beaches and unique culture
44 Massachusetts 10,565 Northeast Historic sites and intellectual culture
45 Vermont 9,616 Northeast Stunning fall foliage and rural beauty
46 New Hampshire 9,349 Northeast Quaint towns and White Mountains
47 New Jersey 8,723 Northeast Proximity to major cities and attractions
48 Connecticut 5,543 Northeast Historic landmarks and coastal charm
49 Delaware 1,949 South First state to ratify the Constitution
50 Rhode Island 1,034 Northeast Quaint charm and oceanic beauty

Territories of the United States by Size

Here’s a table that lists the U.S. territories by their total land area, along with their corresponding Census Region and some notes highlighting unique aspects:

Territory Land Area (sq. miles) Census Region Notes
Puerto Rico 5,325 Caribbean Rich cultural heritage and tropical beauty
Guam 570 Micronesia Strategic military importance
U.S. Virgin Islands 733 Caribbean Caribbean paradise and vibrant culture
American Samoa 581 Polynesia Pacific island beauty and traditional culture
Northern Mariana Islands 1,975 Micronesia Unique blend of cultures and landscapes


The size of U.S. states by area is a captivating facet of the nation’s geography, reflecting its vastness, diversity, and historical development. From the grandeur of Alaska’s wilderness to the vibrant cities of Texas and the cultural tapestry of New Mexico, each state’s size contributes to its distinct identity. Understanding these variations offers a deeper appreciation for the rich tapestry that is the United States of America.