Difference between Western Coastal Plains and Eastern Coastal Plains

By K Balaji|Updated : September 26th, 2022

The difference between western coastal plains and eastern coastal plains can be understood on the basis of different factors such as agriculture, division of coast, land fertility, rivers, lakes, etc. The eastern coastal plain lies between the Eastern Ghats to its West and the Bay of Bengal in the east, while the western coastal plains are between the Western Ghats and the Arabian Sea. It is very important for all UPSC aspirants to understand the difference between eastern and western coastal plains as this topic is a crucial part of the Geography syllabus.

Coastal plains are the areas in India situated on the coastal borders of the subcontinent. The coastal plains in India are divided into two zones, western coastal plains and eastern coastal plains. Read this article till the end to know the difference between western coastal plains and eastern coastal plains.

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Difference Between Western Coastal Plains and Eastern Coastal Plains

The major difference between the eastern coastal plains and western coastal plains is that the eastern plains are divided into 2 stretches known as Coromandel Coast and Northern Circar, while the western plains are divided into three parts named Malabar Coast, Karavali, and Konkan. Check out the difference between western coastal plains and eastern coastal plains tabulated below.

Difference between Eastern and Western Coastal Plains PDF

Basis

Eastern Coastal Plains

Western Coastal Plains

Divided

The Eastern Coastal Plains are divided into two sections - Coromandel Coast and Northern Circar.

The Western Coastal Plains are divided into three parts - Malabar Coast, Karavali, and Konkan.

Rivers

Mahanadi, Godavari, Krishna, and Kaveri

Incidentally broken by certain hill terrains, this area does not contain any rivers of prominence.

Lakes

Chilka Lake in Orissa, Pulicat in Andhra Pradesh, and Kolleru

The Western Coastal Plains are not bejewelled by prominent lakes like the Eastern Coastal Plains

Land Fertility

Rivers such as Mahanadi, Godavari, Krishna, and Kaveri, that have built deltas along the eastern coast, giving rise to fertile alluvial soil

These plains lack prominent rivers flowing through the areas. The water bodies here are fast-flowing and short, resulting in the deposition of less alluvial soil in the region

Agriculture

Due to the deposition of rich alluvial soil along the eastern coast, these plains are suitable for growing important crops such as rice, pulses, sugarcane, cotton, wheat, gram, and oilseeds (groundnut). Plantations of Coconut and Banana are widely found.

Although not particularly fertile, this region is home to crops such as Great, Bajra, Jowar, Cotton, Millets, and Pulses.

Land Stretch

Stretches from the Mahanadi in the State of Orissa to the Kaveri in the state of Tamil Nadu.

Stretches from the Rann of Kutch at the tip of Rajasthan to Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu.

Surface Area

Very wide and have a huge surface area of 41,400 square km.

Narrower and have a surface area of 6,150 km overall, which is much lesser compared to the Eastern Coastal Plains

Surface Type

Very smooth because of the rich alluvial soft soils that the rivers in the region build up throughout the year

Covered in ridges and curves because of the presence of several rocky hills

Lies Between

Lie between the mighty Eastern Ghats and the Bay of Bengal.

Lie between the Western Ghats and the Arabian Sea.

Eastern Coastal Plains and Western Coastal Plains

After learning the difference between eastern and western coastal plains, it is also important to know about each of the coastal plains thoroughly. Read the following points carefully to know all about the western coastal plains and eastern coastal plains in detail.

Eastern Coastal Plains

Lying between the mighty Eastern Ghats and the Bay of Bengal, the Eastern Coastal Plains of India are further divided into three areas:

  1. Utkal Coast - Situated in Odisha; included within it are the deltas of Mahanadi, Brahmani, Baitarani rivers, and the Chilka Lake.
  2. Circar Coast - Northern part of the plains; consists of the deltas of Mahanadi, Godavari, and Krishna.
  3. Coromandel Coast - Southern part of the plains; consists of the delta of river Krishna to Kanyakumari.

Western Coastal Plains

The Western Coastal plains rest between the Eastern Ghats and the Arabian Sea. It is further divided into three zones:

  1. Konkan Coast - Covers areas from the Daman Ganga River in North Mumbai, through the river between Maharashtra and Goa called Terekhol river, and to the Union Territory of Daman in the South.
  2. Kanara Coast - Southern part of the Konkan coast; consists of three coastal districts of Karnataka, namely Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Uttara Kannada, and Kasaragod Taluk of Kerala in southwestern India.
  3. Malabar Coast - Southern part of the Western Coastal plains stretches from Goa to Kanyakumari.

Similarities between Western and Eastern Coastal Plains

Along with the difference between western coastal plains and eastern coastal plains, there are many similarities between the two as well.

  • Both plains are surrounded by water bodies.
  • Both have the same climatic zone.
  • Both eastern and western coastal plains are part of the peninsular block.
  • Both lie between the water bodies and the Deccan plateau.

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FAQs on Western Coastal Plains vs Eastern Coastal Plains

  • The difference between Eastern Coastal Plains and Western Coastal Plains is that while Eastern Coastal Plains stretch from Tamil Nadu through West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh, as well as Odisha, the Western Coastal Plains are a stretch of land extending between the west coast of India and Western Ghats Hills, whose starting point is near the Tapi River.

  • One can differentiate between western and eastern coastal plains on the basis of sections into which each is divided, rivers flowing, lakes, soil found in each region, fertility of the land, etc.

  • The western and eastern coastal plains meet at Kanyakumari which is the southernmost tip of India. The eastern coastal plain lies towards the Bay of Bengal, and the western coastal plain lies towards the Arabian Sea, so they both meet at Kanyakumari where the two seas meet the Indian Ocean.

  • One of the important features of western and eastern coastal plains includes the factor of land fertility. Eastern Coastal Plains are more fertile due to the presence of the Alluvial soil, while Western Coastal Plains are infertile for agricultural purposes except for the Southern Part, i.e., Malabar Coast.

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