How Many U.S. States Are There in North America?

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Of the 50 states of the United States, 49 are located in the North American continent. Hawaii, the 50th and most recent state to join the union, is the only state that is not part of North America.

Having joined the U.S. on August 21, 1959, Hawaii is part of Oceania in the mid-North Pacific. It is situated approximately 2,550 miles southwest of Los Angeles The state is an archipelago consisting of hundreds of islands scattered in an area of around 1,500 square miles. Hawaii is the eighth smallest of the states.

In contrast, the state of Alaska is the biggest U.S. state in terms of land area,and it is also not part of the mainland U.S. Alaska, however, is still part of North America located in the northwest extremity of the continent. It borders on western Canada and to its west is Russia across the Bering Strait. The state officially became part of the U.S. on January 3, 1959.

The mainland U.S. consists of 48 contiguous states and the federal district of Washington D.C. Located within the mainland is the country's smallest state, which is Rhode Island, and the most and least populous states, California and Wyoming, respectively.