Zero percent land

Zero Percent Land at North PoleMaksimilian/Shutterstock

Not only is the North Pole not part of any country, but it doesn’t even have actual soil. These tourists—who are about to gather in a circle to celebrate arriving at the North Pole—are standing on a sheet of pure ice about six to ten feet deep, excluding the Lomonosov Ridge (more on that to follow).

A different kind of circle of latitude

A different kind of circle of latitude at the North PoleMaksimilian/Shutterstock

Back on July 2, 2016, tourists from several countries, including the U.S., Canada, and Great Britain, came together in a circle around the geographic pole to form a “circle of latitude.”

The closest land

Icebergs in Disko bay, North GreenlandYongyut Kumsri/Shutterstock

The closest terra firma to the North Pole—that’s at sea level—belongs to Canada. The next closest is Greenland (which is a self-governing part of Denmark), pictured here. Just below sea level lies the Lomonosov Ridge, to which Canada, Greenland, and Russia have competing claims. Check out these common geography mistakes we all make.