Argentina, officially the Argentine Republic (República Argentina) is a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires. It is the second largest country in South America and eighth in the world by land area and the largest among Spanish-speaking nations, though Mexico, Colombia and Spain are more populous. Its continental area is 2,766,890 km2 (1,068,302 sq mi), between the Andes Mountains in the west and the southern Atlantic Ocean in the east and south. Argentina borders Paraguay and Bolivia to the north, Brazil and Uruguay to the northeast, and Chile to the west and south. Argentina also claims 969,464 km2 (374,312 sq mi) of Antarctica, however, its claim was suspended along with all other claims to the continent by the Antarctic Treaty of 1961.
Argentina is about 3,900 km (2,500 mi) long from north to south, and 1,400 km (870 mi) from east to west. It can roughly be divided into four parts: the fertile plains of the Pampas in the center of the country, which is the source of Argentina's agricultural wealth; the flat to rolling, oil-rich plateau of Patagonia in the southern half down to Tierra del Fuego; the subtropical flats of the Gran Chaco in the north, and the rugged Andes mountain range along the western border with Chile.
The highest point above in Argentina is located in Mendoza. Cerro Aconcagua, at 6,962 m (22,841 ft) is the highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere. The lowest point is Laguna del Carbón in Santa Cruz, −105 meters (−344 ft) below sea level.This is also the lowest point on the South American continent. The geographic centre of the country is located in south-central La Pampa Province. The country is traditionally divided into several geographically distinct regions:
Buenos Aires is the capital and largest city of Argentina, and currently the third largest metropolitan region in South America, after São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. It is located on the southeastern coast of the South American continent. The city of Buenos Aires is not part of Buenos Aires Province, nor is it its capital; rather, it is an autonomous federal district. Greater Buenos Aires has a population of around 13 million. The limits of Buenos Aires proper are determined in the eastern part and north-east by the Rio de la Plata, in the southern part and southeast by the Riachuelo and to the northwest, west and Southwest by Avenida General Paz, a 24-kilometer (15 mi) long highway that separates the province of Buenos Aires from the city.
The city of Buenos Aires lies in the pampa region, except for some zones like the Buenos Aires Ecological Reserve, and the main port itself; which were built on reclaimed land along the coasts of the Rio de la Plata (the world's largest estuary).The region was formerly crossed by different creeks and lagoons, some of which were refilled and others tubed. In 1908 many creeks were channeled and rectified, as floods were damaging the city's infrastructure. Starting in 1919, most creeks were enclosed. Notably, the Maldonado was tubed in 1954, and currently runs below Juan B. Justo Avenue.
The city has a humid subtropical climate. As it is located in the Southern hemisphere, its summer is in December, January and February and its winter are in June, July and August. The average year temperature is 17.6 °C (63.7 °F). The city gets 1,147 mm (45 in) of rainfall per year. The average high temperatures ranges from 30.4 °C (86.7 °F) in January, to 14.9 °C (58.8 °F) in Winter.. Rain can be expected at any time of year and hailstorms are not unusual. The lowest temperature ever recorded in central Buenos Aires (Buenos Aires Central Observatory) was −5.4 °C (22 °F) on 9 July 1918. The highest temperature ever recorded was 43.3 °C (109.9 °F) on 29 January 1957 The last snowfall occurred 9 July 2007 during the worst winter of Argentina in almost thirty years, where severe snowfalls and blizzards affected the country. It was the first major snowfall in the city since 22 June 1918.
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