UPSC IAS Prelims 2021: Important Questions on World Geography - Topic 5 (South America)

In this article, check most important questions on facts related to South America.  Aspirants of UPSC Civil Services Prelims 2021 exams can solve these questions to test their knowledge of World Geography. 

Created On: Apr 27, 2021 18:05 IST
UPSC IAS Prelims 2021: Important Questions on World Geography - Topic 5 (South America)
UPSC IAS Prelims 2021: Important Questions on World Geography - Topic 5 (South America)

South America is the fourth largest continent in size. It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. The geography of South America is dominated by the Andes Mountain Range and the Amazon River. The Equator passes through the northern part of the continent and the Tropic of Capricorn runs roughly through the middle. Because of its tapering shape, a major part of the landmass is in the tropics. South America lies on the west of the Prime Meridian. So the time at any place on this continent will be some hours less than or behind the Greenwich Mean Time.

Topic-wise Important Questions & Answers on World Geography

Ques 1: Which of the following islands of Ecuador is the natural fertility centre of Olive Ridley Turtle, species recently seen in news?

(a) Robinson Crusoe Island of Ecuador

(b) Galapagos Island of Ecuador

(c) San Andres Island of Ecuador

(d) Isabela Island of Ecuador

Ans: b


Galapagos Island is an island group of the eastern Pacific Ocean, administratively a province of Ecuador. The government of Ecuador designated part of the Galapagos a wildlife sanctuary in 1935, and in 1959 the sanctuary became the Galapagos National Park. In 1978 the islands were designated a UNESCO World Heritage site, and in 1986 the Galapagos Marine Resources Reserve was created to protect the surrounding waters. 

Ques 2: Consider the following statements;

  • The island of Trinidad lies in the South Atlantic Ocean.
  •  South America includes 14 countries.

Which of the given statements is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: b


The Tierra del Fuego is in the Southern Ocean and the Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic Ocean. The island of Trinidad is near Venezuela in the North Atlantic Ocean.

South America includes 14 countries:

  1. Argentina
  2. Bolivia
  3. Brazil
  4. Chile
  5. Colombia
  6. Ecuador
  7. Falkland Islands (United Kingdom) i.e. (British Overseas Territories)
  8. French Guiana (France)
  9. Guyana
  10. Paraguay
  11. Peru
  12. Suriname
  13. Uruguay
  14. Venezuela.

Ques 3: Mount Aconcagua, the highest mountain peak of South America, lies in which of the following country?

(a) Chile 

(b) Ecuador

(c) Argentina

(d) Brazil

Ans: c


Mount Aconcagua, on the Chilean border in west-central Argentina, is the highest point in both South America and the Western Hemisphere. 

Ques 4: Match the following grasslands with their countries:



(A) Llanos

(I) Pampas

(B) Argentina 

(II) Bolivia

(C) Gran Chaco

(III) Venezuela

Select the correct code:

(a) A-III, B-I, C-II

(b) A-I, B-II, C-III

(c) A-III, B-II, C-I

(d) A-I, B-III, C-II

Ans: a


The Orinoco Basin has dense tropical forests. The northern part is a plain covered with savanna grass called the Llanos.

The equatorial jungle of the Amazon Basin is called the selvas, a typical tropical rain forest.

The rich temperate grasslands around the mouth of the Parana-Paraguay is the pampas.

At the source of these rivers is a region scrub forest called the Gran Chaco.

Ques 5: Atacama desert, the driest place on Earth is located at: 

(a) Argentina

(b) Uruguay 

(c) Peru

(d) Chile

Ans: d


The Atacama is the driest place on earth, other than the poles. It receives less than 1 mm of precipitation each year, and some areas haven't seen a drop of rain in more than 500 years.

Ques 6: The world’s highest waterfall Angel (979 m) drains its water from which river?

(a) Amazon

(b) Orinoco

(c) Parana

(d) Sao Francisco

Ans: b


The world’s highest waterfall Angel (979 m) is situated on river Churun which is a tributary of river Caroni which is further a tributary of river Orinoco. The Orinoco flows through the llanos (savanna grasslands) of Venezuela into the (North Atlantic Ocean).

Ques 7: Which one of the following is the largest lak of South America?

(a) Lake Titicaca

(b) Lake Popo

(c) Lake Maracaibo

(d) Galapagos

Ans: c


Lake Maracaibo is a large brackish tidal bay in Venezuela and an "inlet of the Caribbean Sea". It is sometimes considered a lake rather than a bay or lagoon. It is connected to the Gulf of Venezuela by Tablazo Strait, which is 5.5 kilometres wide at the northern end.

Ques 8: “Lithium Triangle” often seen in the news, is used for which three countries?

(a) Chile, Bolivia and Argentina

(b) Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay

(c) Chile, Peru, Ecuador

(d) Venezuela, Guyana, Brazil

Ans: a


Lithium Triangle is an intersection of Chile, Bolivia and Argentina, known for high quality salt flats. Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia, Salar de Atacama in Chile, and Salar de Arizaro in Argentina contains over 45%of known global lithium reserves.

Ques 9: Consider the following statements with respect to Pantanal:

  1. It is one of the largest pristine temperate wetlands in the world.
  2. Whole of the wetland is protected under Ramsar Convention and UNESCO World Heritage Sites and Biosphere Reserves.      

Which of the statement(s) given above is/are correct?

(a)  1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: d


The Pantanal is a natural region encompassing the world's largest tropical wetland area, and the world's largest flooded grasslands. It is located mostly within the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul, but it extends into Mato Grosso and portions of Bolivia and Paraguay

The areas that are protected are globally significant, with parts that fall under an agreement called Ramsar that requires national governments to conserve and wisely use wetlands, and some that are UNESCO World Heritage Sites and Biosphere Reserves. Around 95% of the Pantanal is under private ownership, the majority of which is used for cattle grazing.

Ques 10: The savanna grasslands of Brazilian Highlands are called: 

(a) Pampas

(b) Selvas

(c) Campos

(d) Llanos

Ans: c


Grasslands are areas where the vegetation is dominated by grasses. However, sedge and rush can also be found along with variable proportions of legumes, like clover, and other herbs. Grasslands occur naturally on all continents except Antarctica and are found in most ecoregions of the Earth.

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