Interesting facts and History about Indian Ocean

Interesting facts and History about Indian Ocean

The Indian Ocean is the third largest Ocean after the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered with three continents to the east, west, and north along with the southern side which is bordered by Southern Ocean(Antarctica).Known as the warmest ocean in the world, the Indian Ocean has some unique facts.

Its size and volume

With its total area of 70560000 square kilometers, the Indian ocean covers 19.5% of the total size of Earth’s water body. And also that size comprised of 14% of the total area of Earth’s surface.

Actual depth is something special

The deepest point of the Indian Ocean is located in Sunda Trench some time known as Java Trench. The maximum depth in the Sunda Trench is 7450 meters deep. This trench is also part of the Pacific Ring of Fire and one of the rings of oceanic trenches. This is the reason that some of the most active volcanoes are present here. The 2004 earthquake of Sumatra, Java, and Andaman Nicobar Islands are some of the examples which prove the same.

Warmest Ocean in the world

The Indian ocean has its climatic zone. Because its northern zone is surrounded by Asian countries so the average temperature remains 24 degrees Celsius and the warmest one is 28 degrees Celsius because of the presence of Equator. But some relief comes to the south where the temperature drops to minus 40 degrees Celsius due to the Arctic region and Australian Continent.

It is getting wider

According to scientists, the Indian Ocean getting wider by 20 cm every year. The main reason behind this is due to the South and North poles polar cap melting.  

How many countries, islands, and continents present

There are 18 African countries, 24 Asian countries, and nearly 57 islands along with one continent Australia located in and around the Indian Ocean.

Connects with Mediterranean sea

Made by Suez Canal Company in the middle of 1859 and 1869, the Suez Canal connects the Indian Ocean with the Mediterranean sea via the Red Sea. It connects North Atlantic with the Northern Indian Ocean while reducing 8900 kilometers distance.

Marine life is struggling here

Due to the monsoon winds, the Indian Ocean hosts the world’s largest concentration of the phytoplankton. Increasing global warming and water pollution caused a large reduction of fishes and marine products in the Indian Ocean area. Although its 80% area is open, somehow animals like Dugong, Green sea Turtle, Fin whale, Indo- Pacific humpback, and many more are considered as the endangered species. Because of the low oxygen level and high temperature, the Indian Ocean has limited sea life.

It has the largest mangrove in the world

Nearly half of the total Mangrove area is located along with the Indian Ocean coasts. The area covers 80984 square kilometers. Among this area, the largest one comes under Indonesia with 42500 square kilometers.

Receives the highest volume of drainage water

It receives 6000 kilometers of river runoff, especially from the Ganges- Brahmaputra, Indus, Jubba river.

Numerous Marginal seas, coasts, shelves, rivers, and sea basins located along with the Indian Ocean region. Among them Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea, Andaman sea, Great Australian Bight, Red Sea.

One of the highest numbers of oil production happens

The Indian Ocean contributes worlds 40% of the total oil production. India, Arabian countries are involved in this production on a large scale.

There is a submerged continent

Around 130 billion years ago a microcontinent named Kerguelen Plateau has broken away from Gondwana Land(a supercontinent). Located in the southern part of the Indian Ocean, Kerguelen Plateau is 3000 kilometers southeast of Australia and larger than Japan. From north to west and east to south the plateau covers 220 kilometers and the whole part of that plateau lies under the water.

The Ocean is divided by a mid-ocean ridge

5000 kilometers long the Ninety East Ridge divides the Indian Ocean into East and West.

It is located in the southward of Bay of Bengal towards somewhere near another mid-ocean ridge called South East Asian Ridge.

Connects three different plates

In the southern Indian Ocean bed, there is a point that connects three tectonic plates – African plate, Indo Australian Plate, and the Antarctic Plate. This R-R-R type junction point is known as Rodrigues triple junction Point additionally called Central Indian Triple Junction.

Presence of largest ports and cities

One of the busiest seaports in Indian Ocean Singapore port, Mumbai Port(India), Kolkata Port(India), Aden(Yemen), the largest and busiest port of Africa Durban Port (South Africa), Jakarta(Indonesia), etc.

Some of the biggest cities like Mumbai(India), Singapore(Singapore), Perth(Australia), Durban(South Africa), Dar-es-Salam(Tanzania), Colombo(Sri Lanka) located in the coast of Indian Ocean.

Origin of the name came from Indian Sanskrit word

According to the Indian Scriptures Sanskrit word Ratnakar (The mine of Gems) is the origin of the Indian Ocean. In many other Indian languages, it is also called Hindu Sagar and Sindhu Mahasgar means “the great sea of Sindhu” which was known among Ancient Indian Cultures. In 1515 Latin word Oceanus Orientalis Indicus (Indian Eastern Ocean ) is the main source of present name.

Youngest among Major Oceans in the world

Yes it true that the Indian Ocean is youngest among all major oceans like Atlantic, Pacific Ocean

It is a landlocked Ocean

The Northern part of the Ocean is locked by the Asian Continent. Thus it made it a landlocked ocean in the world.

The Indian Ocean has some unique water chemicals

Because of Bay of Bengals river runoff and maximum evaporation of seawater in the Arabian sea. That’s why it has some unique characters of water with some highest and lowest salinity.

Explorers who visited in this part of the world

The sea trading started around 400 years ago by the Gujrati merchant. They were involved with African counterparts, where they traded different things like ivory and many more. During 1498 Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama visited India with the round of Cape of Good Hopes, became the first European who visited India through the Indian Ocean.

It has also a garbage patch

Discovered in 2010 Indian Ocean Garbage Patch is spread over 5 million square kilometres of area. It mostly contains garbage plastics in circulating between Australia to Africa in every six years.


Sandip loves to share everything with the world. He believes that sharing and caring can spread the love and knowledge.

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