Saudi Arabia, with an area of about 865,000 square miles, occupies the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. It is roughly one-third the size of the continental United States, and the same size as all of Western Europe.
Saudi Arabia lies at the crossroads of three continents: Europe, Asia, and Africa. It extends from the Red Sea on the west to the Arabian Gulf in the east. To the north it borders on Jordan, Iraq, and Kuwait, and to the south, on Yemen and the Sultanate of Oman. To the east lie the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and the island state of Bahrain.
Saudi Arabia's terrain is varied but on the whole fairly barren and harsh, with salt flats, gravel plains, and sand dunes but few lakes or permanent streams. In the south is the Rub Al-Khali (Empty Quarter), the largest sand desert in the world. In the southwest, the mountain ranges of Asir Province rise to over 9,000 feet.
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