The longest river in the world

The longest river in the world is the Nile in Africa. At least it is generally regarded as the longest river. It has two major tributaries. The longer of the two is the White Nile. While the exact source is still unknown it is certain that it comes from the Great Lakes in central Africa; most likely the mountains in Rwanda or Burundi.

Lake Victoria is often mentioned as the source but that’s not quite the case. The lake has its own feeders; the Kagera River being the longest. It is therefore considered the most distant know source of the White Nile. The second tributary is the Blue Nile. It arises from Lake Tana in Ethiopia. Including the Kagera the Nile is 6,650 km long. With further exploration this figure might go up even further.

The Nile, the longest river worldwide, near Kairo
Picture: © Andreas Wolf -

The longest river of the world flows through Burundi and Rwanda, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Uganda and the Sudan (and South Sudan) but also Kenya and Ethopia. From Sudan it flows through Egypt. North of Cairo it forms the Nile Delta and feeds into the Mediterranean

The Amazon may not be the longest river in the world but it is by a margin the largest by waterflow. In fact it discharges more water than the next seven biggest rivers combined. With 6450 kilometres it is the second longest river in the world. It is said that 20% of the world’s fresh water is in the Amazon and its tributaries.

Some rankings list the Mississippi – Missouri as the third longest river in the world. Correct seems to be that the Yangtze (6418 kilometres) in China is longer and the third longest river on earth.


Here you find infos about Crete, the biggest island of Greece.

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