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Mapping the World’s Highest Mountains, By Continent



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World's highest mountains in each continent

Mapping the World’s Highest Mountains, By Continent

From the snow-capped Himalayas in Asia to the dormant Mauna Kea in Hawai’i, mountains have long been a source of fascination for humans.

They are geological marvels, sacred spaces, and the crowning glory of nature and nations. And while there are mountain ranges found all over the world, a few peaks quite literally stand out from the rest.

In this graphic, Arijit Gupta uses data from various sources including Wikipedia, Peakbagger, and EarthENV to highlight three mountains that crown each of the world’s continents.

1. Asia

With its highest three peaks all surpassing 8,000 meters, Asia has the highest mountains in the world in terms of absolute elevation.

Mount EverestHimalayas8,845m

Towering over the Himalayas, the famed Mount Everest on the border of China and Nepal is the highest mountain peak on Earth by elevation. Climbers train for months and, at times, years to scale this challenging peak.

Not far behind Mount Everest is the Karakoram range’s K2 between Pakistan and China. While its peak is a little over 200 meters shorter than that of Everest, more inclement weather locally is said to make it a lot more dangerous to climbers.

The main peak of Kanchenjunga, another Himalayan mountain between India and Nepal, stands tall at 8,586 meters. While this peak is the third-highest in the world, its range comprises four other peaks that are not far behind.

2. South America

South America’s crowning peaks are seen along the Andes Mountain range, starting with the highest mountain peak in the Southern Hemisphere—Aconcagua.

Aconcagua Andes6,961m
Ojos del Salado Andes6,893m
Monte Pissis Andes6,793m

Located in Argentina, Aconcagua stands at a staggering height of 6,961 meters above sea level. It is also the highest mountain peak in the Americas.

Ojos del Salado on the Argentina–Chile border is a close second in height. This peak ranks as the highest volcano in the world, with its upper reaches containing lava domes, lava flows, and volcanic craters.

Another Argentinian mountain, Monte Pissis, stands merely 100 meters lower than Ojos del Salado. At an elevation of 6,793 meters, it is still the third-highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere.

3. North America

Unlike the continents above, the highest mountains in North America are spread out across a few different mountain ranges.

Mount LoganSt. Elias5,959m
Pico De OrizabaTrans-Mexican Volcanic Belt5,636m

The U.S.’s Denali in the Alaska Range is the tallest mountain in North America at 6,190 meters. Formerly called Mount McKinley, Denali’s subarctic location and elevation is said to make it the coldest mountain in the world.

Located in Canada’s Yukon Territory, Mount Logan is the second-highest mountain in North America. Thanks to a process known as tectonic uplifting, it is actually still increasing in height by about 0.35 mm each year.

Mexico’s Pico de Orizaba, a dormant volcano, comes in third. Though it is part of the far-away Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt range, all of the continent’s largest mountains are part of the North American Cordillera of connected mountain ranges.

4. Africa

Africa is home to three of the world’s highest peaks, and some of the most diverse mountain-side climates surrounding them.

Mount KilimanjaroEastern Rift5,895m
Mount KenyaEastern Rift5,199m
Mount StanleyRwenzori5,109m

Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest peak in Africa and the highest freestanding mountain globally. Climbing Kilimanjaro is a unique experience, as it takes you through five different ecological zones including rainforests, moorlands, alpine deserts, and glaciers.

Meanwhile, Africa’s second-highest peak in Kenya, its namesake Mount Kenya, actually has three distinct summits. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to various wildlife species, including elephants and hyenas.

Following close is the Rwenzori Range’s Mount Stanley. Located on the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, it is locally believed to be a sacred site where ancestors reside on the mountain’s peaks.

5. Europe

The Caucasus Mountains at the edge of Eastern Europe contains the continent’s highest mountains.

Mount ElbrusCaucasus Mountains5,642m
Gora Dykh-TauCaucasus Mountains5,205m
ShkharaCaucasus Mountains5,193m

Mount Elbrus in Russia is number one with an elevation of 5,642 m. The mountain is a dormant volcano with a symmetrical double-cone shape, but since its most recent explosion was around 50 C.E., it is presently covered with snow and glaciers.

Nearby Goa Dykh-Tau is the second-highest mountain in Europe. It has a sharp, pyramid-like peak that rises sharply from its base, and is located just a few kilometers north of the Georgian border.

Just across the border on the southern side is Shkhara, the third-highest peak on the European continent. It is known for a distinctive double summit, with the western summit being slightly higher than the eastern one.

6. Oceania

While many of the above continents have high-ranking mountain peaks located in different countries, Oceania’s are all entirely within Indonesia on the island of New Guinea.

Puncak JayaSudirman4,884m
Puncak MandalaJayawijaya4,760m

Oceania’s highest peak is Puncak Jaya, also known by other local names including Carstensz Pyramid, the mountain of which Puncak Jaya is a distinct summit. It’s the world’s tallest mountain on an island, and reaching its summit is a challenging climb due to its remote location and difficult terrain.

Decades ago, second-place Sumantri was known as Ngga Pulu, and was higher than Puncak Jaya. However, that changed due to glacial melting since the 1850s helped isolate and clarify the local peaks of Carstensz Pyramid. Today, Sumantri stands tall at 4,870 meters as the second-highest on the continent.

To the East in the Jayawijaya range, Puncak Mandala is third on this list. But as a freestanding mountain, it is sometimes considered to be the second-highest peak in Oceania, while Sumantri is disqualified as an offshoot peak of Carstensz Pyramid.

Bonus: Antarctica

Though they weren’t mapped, Gupta also included data for the mountains in Antarctica, which are unlike any other mountains on Earth.

These mountains are relatively low-lying and often completely covered in ice and snow.

Vinson MassifSentinel4,892m
Mount TyreeSentinel4,852m
Mount ShinnSentinel4,661m

The Vinson Massif contains the highest peak on Antarctica, known as Mount Vinson. Discovered in 1958, the mountain is a challenging climb with lots of icy terrain, and was the last of the Seven Summits to be ascended for the first time in 1966.

Mount Tyree is the second-highest on the continent and only 13 kilometers away from Vinson. It has an elevation just 40 meters shorter, but is also difficult to access.

Comparatively, Mount Shinn—the third-highest peak on the continent—is sometimes also summited by experienced mountaineers that come to Antarctica to climb Mount Vinson.

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This article was published as a part of Visual Capitalist's Creator Program, which features data-driven visuals from some of our favorite Creators around the world.

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Charting Grand Theft Auto: GTA’s Budget and Revenues

Dive into the GTA budget through the years, with GTA VI set to be the most expensive video game of all time.



A cropped chart comparing the GTA budget and revenue across three game titles.

Charting Grand Theft Auto: GTA’s Budget and Revenues

Over 10 years since the launch of Grand Theft Auto V (GTA V), the second most-sold video game in history, Rockstar Games has announced its sequel GTA VI will be “coming 2025.”

As the anticipation only grows for this next big entry in the franchise, we take a look at the GTA budget through the years. How much have the last two games cost to make, how much have they earned, and how do they compare with the latest entry?

Data for this visualization comes from Statista, TweakTown, and Twitch Metrics.

How Much Has GTA VI Cost to Make?

The GTA franchise has grown enormously in scale from humble beginnings as a top-down, 2D video game in 1997. Fifteen installments later, the upcoming release, GTA VI, is estimated to be the most expensive video game to be made yet.

Here’s a look at how much GTA VI and the last two major releases cost, and how much revenue they’ve earned as of August 2023.

YearTitleProduction Costs ($)Revenue ($)Copies Sold
2025 (est.)GTA VI$2B (rumored)N/AN/A
2013GTA V $265M$7.7B185M
2008GTA IV$100M$2B25M

In 2008, GTA IV cost around $100 million—already a budget that rivalled big Hollywood releases. However with 25 million copies sold, the game earned nearly $2 billion—a five-fold return on its production cost.

Five years later, GTA V (2013) cost more than $200 million to make—twice GTA IV’s budget. A decade after its release, GTA V has generated close to $8 billion, with hundreds of millions in annual revenue from subscriptions and in-game purchases—a model that its successor is sure to follow.

In fact, subscription fees and in-game purchases represented 78% of Take-Two Interactive’s (parent of GTA developer Rockstar Games) revenues in 2023.

Analysts estimate the to-be-released GTA VI’s costs at $2 billion, including marketing and other expenses. A massive open-world (set in the Miami-inspired “Vice City”), cutting edge graphics, and a reportedly brand-new game engine are all reasons for the game’s outsized budget.

For comparison, the current most expensive games to have been made include Red Dead Redemption 2 (also by Rockstar) and Star Citizen, both reportedly with a $500 million budget.

Meanwhile, Take-Two Interactive shares are up more than 50% for the year.

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