What are Isthmus and Strait?

By Ritesh|Updated : September 1st, 2022

A narrow strip of land connects two larger land masses and separates two water bodies is the isthmus. A strait is a narrow water body connecting two larger water bodies. Isthmus has been a strategic location for many years.

Isthmus And Strait - Similarity and Differences


  • Isthmus has been a strategic location for many years.
  • They are natural locations for harbours and canals connecting land and water trade routes.
  • Isthmus are key sites for communication and cultural exchange, and military bases.
  • For instance - The Isthmus of Panama connects the continents of South and North America in Panama and separates the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.


  • A strait can be formed by a break in an isthmus, a narrow body of land which connects two water bodies.
  • Tectonic shifts lead to such straits. The Strait of Gibraltar was formed by tectonic activity, the connection between the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea.
  • If fractures in the neck occur during the activity of humans, the straits are known as canals. For instance, the Suez Canal.
  • A strait can be formed by a water body overflowing land which has subsided or eroded.
  • This way, the Bosphorus was created, connecting the Aegean Sea and the Black Sea.


What are Isthmus and Strait?

An isthmus is a strip of land that is narrow, and a strait is a body of water that is narrow, connecting two water bodies.


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