List of Major Plateaus of the World

The Plateaus are built over millions of years as pieces of Earth's crust smash into each other, melt, and gurgle back toward the surface. In this article, we are given the name of major plateaus of major plateaus of the world with their location and characteristics, which is very useful for the competitive examinations like UPSC-prelims, SSC, State Services, NDA, CDS, and Railways etc.
List of Major Plateaus of the World
List of Major Plateaus of the World

The term Plateau can be defined as the upland which has at least one side of very steep slope standing well above the neighbouring surface and whose upper part is extensively flat. The most significant deciding factor of the Plateau is the flatness of its top rather than the height. The list of major Plateaus of the World with their location and characteristics is given below:

Name of Plateau



Tibetan Plateau

Central Asia

1. Popularly known as "the Roof of the World"

2. Surrounded by imposing mountain ranges that harbour the world's two highest mountain peak i.e. Mount Everest and K2

3. Formed due to the collision of the Indo-Australian and Eurasian tectonic plates

Columbia – Snake Plateau

Washington, Oregon, and Idaho (USA)

1. Formed due to the volcanic eruptions with a consequent coating of basalt lava (Flood Basalt Plateau). Hence it is called 'flood basalt plateau'.

Colorado Plateau

Southwestern part of USA

1. Bounded by the Rocky Mountains from north and east, in the west by the Great Basin, and from the south by the Sonoran Desert.

Deccan Plateau


1. Largest plateau in India

2. Located between Western Ghats and Eastern Ghats

3. It is volcanic basalt beds of the Deccan which were laid down by the massive Deccan Trap eruption.

Kimberley Plateau


1. Formed by the volcanic eruption

2. Mineral deposits, including kimberlite (diamond-bearing rock) and traces of oil.

Katanga Plateau

Democratic Republic of the Congo

1. Famous for copper and uranium deposits

2. Region is good for farming and ranching

Mascarene Plateau

Indian Ocean

1. Second largest undersea plateau in the Indian Ocean after the Kerguelen Plateau

2. Formed of granite, and is a fragment of the ancient supercontinent of Gondwana

Laurentian Plateau


1. Also known as 'Canadian Shield'

2. Famous for exposed Precambrian igneous and high-grade metamorphic rocks (geological shield)

3. Fine quality of iron-ore is found here

Mexican Plateau


1. Also called as Mexican Altiplano

2. Popularly known as ‘Mineral Store’

3. Famous for World's biggest silver mine i.e. Chihuahua

Patagonian Plateau


1. It is semi-arid scrub and rain shadow desert plateau.

2. Famous for sheep rearing

Altiplano Plateau or Bolivian Plateau

South-eastern region of Peru and western region Bolivia

1. It is a series of intermontane basins.

2. Famous for Tin reserves

Massif Central


1. Tectonic movements created faults and are maybe at the origin of the volcanism in the Massif Central (but the hypothesis is not proved yet).

2. Famous for Grapes cultivation

Anatolian Plateau


1. Popularly known as Asia Minor

2. Region is famous for best quality wool producing  goat i.e. Angora goats

Spanish Plateau or Iberian Plateau


1. Formed by the volcanic eruption and lava

2. One of the best quality iron is found in this region

Loess Plateau


1. Also known as the 'Huangtu Plateau'

2. Famous for highly erodible soil on the Earth

Pothohar Plateau


1. Bounded on the east by the Jhelum River, on the west by the Indus River, on the north by the Kala Chitta Range and the Margalla Hills, and on the south by the Salt Range.

Bavarian Plateau


1. Also known as 'Alpine Foreland'

2. Formed under the influence of the ice ages and has a rich variety of landforms

Ahaggar Plateau


1. Also called as 'Hoggar', large plateau in the north centre of the Sahara, on the Tropic of Cancer, North Africa.

2. Region is composed of black volcanic (basalt).

The Intermontane Plateaux, Piedmont Plateaux, Dome Shaped Plateaux, Continental Plateaux, and Volcanic Plateaux are the classification of the Plateaux. Above list of major Plateaus of the world will enhance the general knowledge of the readers.

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