10 Most Important Rivers in the World

Martina Rosado
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Sepik River

The Sepik River is the second largest river on the island of New Guinea. It originates in the southern highlands and runs 7500 kilometers across New Guinea and into the Pacific Ocean.

The river’s upper reaches and the middle areas of its lower reaches are home to the smallest gold deposits in the world. The headwaters of the Sepik stretch to the middle of the island, and the main mouth ends in the Bismarck Sea, some 400 kilometers from the nearest mainland.

The river flows over the rocky limestone floor and along the edges of three high plateaus, crisscrossed by many rivers, valleys, and canyons. The landscape is barren and densely forested.

The Sepik is renowned for its rapids, especially those upstream. Its rich and complex river culture is so important to indigenous people that it is regarded as part of their culture and as religion.

The river is home to the Kokoda Trail, known as one of the highest casualties in the war, when the Allied soldiers who attempted to take its path fought and fought until the First Australian Imperial Force finally won.

The Sepik River is also regarded as the most dangerous river in the world for cargo transportation. Its navigability is waning since deforestation and sedimentation are making its way up from nearby rivers.

Mississippi River

Length: 2,350 miles (3,776 km)

Capacity: 3,387 feet (1,036 meters)

The Mississippi River, in the United States, is the longest river in the world to flow entirely within one country. The river contains one of the largest discharge of fresh water in the world.

The name of the river comes from a number of Algonquian words including misi, missi, meshi, maski, mesi, and fisher. This term was first taken by French colonists in Louisiana, who had heard Second Nation Native American inhabitants of the area refer to the river.

The name of the river was originally given to the Ohio River by the French, in honor of the Native American Meskwaki people, translations of which include either “prairie river” or “big river.”

To the south, it forms a wide delta, which has eroded such that the Mississippi does not flow as much as a river as it does a system of interlocking meandered rivers. The river has four major sources: the Missouri River, the Ohio River, the Mississippi River, and the Illinois River. An additional three sources are not considered major rivers: the White River, Arkansas River, and Crow River.

Volga River

(Volga-Bulga, RSFSR)

The Volga, sometimes spelled as Volkhov, is a river in Europe and Asia, once regarded as the largest branch of the river system of Eurasia at the height of its power. To date, the river is the most voluminous stream in Europe. It is also, by discharge volume, the largest river in the world by watershed. The river flows through Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The 2.5 million square kilometres Volga watershed includes many lakes; its most famous two are Lake Sarychskoye, located 147 km from the river mouth, and the Caspian Sea.

The Volga is an important navigable waterway for the fifty million people living along its valley. These are the ten cities that I think are the most important cultural treasures of this river:

Samara – Samara, the capital of the Republic of Samara, is situated on the Volga River at its confluence with the Samara Reservoir. Samara is one of the oldest cities in the Volga basin. Samara's old name was Scythia, as are the names of many other Russian cities that were founded in the early middle ages as defensive fortresses to protect trade crossing the Volga.


The Zambezi River is the fourth largest river by discharge volume of any river flowing entirely within the boundaries of a single country. The river flows from the highlands of Zambia to Mozambique and through eastern Zimbabwe to empty into the Indian Ocean near Chinde, in Namibia, a distance of 2,830 kilometres (1,740 mi). The name is derived from a Tongwa dialect word, Shumba ya Mbezi, which means "the smoke that thunders, the mighty."

Historically, the Zambezi was among the most powerful rivers in the world, with flood plains measuring hundreds of kilometres in width near the delta and a mean annual discharge of about 45,600 cubic metres per second (1,524,000 cu ft/s). Because of irrigation schemes, land use changes and dams on the Kafue Flats and other tributaries, the average discharge at the Victoria Falls has been greatly diminished so that the river can now be crossed easily.

The Kafue Flats in the lower part of the Zambezi valley has the largest agricultural potential in Zimbabwe. The Kafue Flats have also been subject to major destruction and pollution.

Mekong River

The Mekong River originate with the confluence of the St.u’ Khola (a tributary of the Karnali River) and the chao Phraya River in southeast Nepal. The confluence, or ultimate source, of the Mekong and the Salween rivers, is located in the ThailandLaos border in the Sekong River valley. They both continue through Laos, making a sharp turn to the south at the confluence, flow eastward, across southern China, emptying into the South China Sea at the southern tip of the Zhujiang Delta in Guangdong province.

The Mekong River, exceptionally long at 4,220 kilometers, is the largest river in Southeast Asia, growing with the flow of the watershed and making the downstream delta very wide and flat. The Mekong Basin is thought to be largely a palaeochannel of the Annamite mountains. The river flows through the most productive and densely populated agricultural regions of the world where rice is the main staple and where the river is an important artery.


Ganga is the holy bank of Hinduism. It encompasses villages, community, and temples and is considered sacred and as well as socially and scientifically highly important for the Indian people.

{1}. Yangtze: This river flows through a heavily populated eastern China. The river is the third longest river in China as well as in the world. It flows through some amazing mountains landscape and it also contains a highly populated megacity ( Chongqing).
{2}. Severn: The Severn is the longest river in the country of Wales. The river flows through all of the five county, and the river has plenty of fish and sea creatures in and on it. The Severn is also a popular destination for river tourism and recreational fishing.
{3}. Colorado: This is the longest river in the US states of Colorado of Utah and New Mexico. The river flows through a large area of ​​a highly populated US state. The river also has plenty of fish and sea creatures in and on it.


It is in Europe and Asia that the Danube is the only river that flows west to east. It means that a lot of its basin stretches from Western Europe to the Russian Plain along the link between the Carpathians and the North Pontic region. It is a moderate-sized river and the largest European river by discharge, but losing 50% of its water in its journey.

It is the longest river in Central or Eastern Europe, the second longest in Europe, and it is the ninth longest river in the world. It flows through or borders the following countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, and Moldavia.

In addition to this, it also shares some of the territory with other smaller rivers, like Timiş, Cerna, and Mureş in Romania and southern Moldova. It supplies 4.8% of Europe’s water, which means that millions of people in Europe are living with its water.

The Danube is the second most important river for trade in the European Union. In Hungary, the Danube joined the river Tisza to form the famous “Great Hungarian Plain.”

Yangtze River

It is the longest river in Asia, and the third longest in the world, and it is the sixth longest in the world overall. The river flows through seven provinces of China, and its drainage basin covers 33% of China, and in that 33% grow 9 of the world’s 10 most important crops.

Yangtze has a length of 2,155 km and the river basin has a total of 26.7 million square kilometers. Nobody knows exactly how long the river is, but it is believed to be the sixth longest on earth. Yes, this river, holds the title of the 12th largest river in the world.

Yangtze is known to have 97 islands, and according to theory, there are more than 250,000 islands. In the middle of the river, there are two lakes that are known as the He-Yu lakes. They are the size of Europe, and they are the largest freshwater lakes in Asia.

In the short term, Yangtze has a good economic power. This is because the river is a great source of fish, namely carp, and the river is also used for transportation, and the transportation along the river is only getting better and better.


The Nile River is the longest river in the world. It flows through the northern and southern hemispheres, stretching through Africa from western Sudan through Egypt to the Mediterranean Sea, totaling 5,890 miles in length.

It is the seventh longest river in terms of flow after the Amazon, Congo, Yangtze, Ob, Yenisei and Mississippi. It is the longest river by drainage basin size in the world, the second largest in terms of discharge, and the deepest of the major rivers.

The river empties into the Mediterranean Sea via the Nile Delta and in the process creates Lake Nasser, a massive reservoir. The Nile has a total drainage area of about 1,221,360 square miles (3,109,000 sq. km), the second largest of any river next to the Amazon.

The Rhines (along with their major tributaries) dumps a lot more water than the Nils as the Rhine covers a total land area of some 1,381,000 square miles while the flow of the Nile (6,658 cubic feet per second (175 m3/s)), the Rhine (215,000 cubic feet per second (11,250 m3/s) and the Danube (23,500 cubic feet per second (700 m3/s)) are all about the same.

Amazon River

Amazon River, is the largest river in the world by discharge, drainage basin area, and by length. The Amazon originates in western Brazil, flowing 1,300 km, to the east coast of the South American continent. The river then bisects the South American continent, emptying into the Atlantic Ocean by the Atlantic Ocean. Its drainage basin covers almost one-sixth of South America in area, comprising most of the Amazon basin plus the southernmost portion of the Orinoco River basin in Venezuela and the smaller, northernmost part of the Guianas basin in Colombia.

The river represents the source of life for almost one quarter of humanity and it is the longest river in the world by length and in the world’s top ten list of longest rivers. It is one of the largest rivers in the world with an average discharge of approximately 6000 m/s (209,500 cu ft/s).

Amazon river system flows in the tropical climate zone. The Amazon is the largest river in the world by discharge and is also the only major river in the world to pass through South America.