What Is a Physical Feature in Geography?

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Physical features in geography include bodies of water and landforms, for example, oceans, mountains, lakes, rivers, plateaus, plains, streams, hills, bays, gulfs, volcanoes, canyons, valleys and peninsulas are all various physical features. Anything that describes the Earth's topography is a physical feature.

Geographic physical features can vary depending on the scale of the map. On a small-scale map, such as a world map, physical features may be limited to names of oceans and continents, major mountain ranges and rivers. Large-scale maps show much more detail and include physical features such as topology, ponds, creeks, escarpments, buttes, mesas, seascapes and smaller hills. Some land surveys, such as the Public Land Survey System, show physical features in areas as small as an acre.