A country is considered landlocked when it is surrounded on all sides by one or more other countries and therefore has no direct access to a coastline providing access to the oceans.
How Many Countries are Landlocked?
There are currently 48 countries (including four partially recognized states) that are completely surrounded by at least one other country. With the exception of two countries in South America (Bolivia and Paraguay) the rest of these 46 countries are found in Africa, Europe, and Asia.
Map of Landlocked Countries
Landlocked by a Single Country
There are three countries that are completely landlocked (i.e. surrounded on all sides) by only country. Two of these countries are founded within the country of Italy. These single-country landlocked countries are: Lesotho which is surrounded by South Africa, San Marino, a state surrounded by Italy, and Vatican City which is a city-state surrounded by Rome, the capitol city of Italy.
Landlocked countries that are separated from the nearest ocean coastline but not one, but two countries, are known as double-landlocked or doubly-landlocked countries. The first country that is double-landlocked is the microstate of Liechtenstein located in central Europe which is immediately surrounded by the landlocked countries of Austria and Switzerland. The second country is located in central Asia, Uzbekistan which is surrounded by the landlocked countries of Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan.
Largest and Smallest Landlocked Countries
The largest landlocked country is Kazakhstan in Central Asia with a land area of over 2.7 million kilometers. The smallest landlocked country is the city-state of Vatican City with an area of just 44 hectares (109 acres).
List of Landlocked Countries