Plateau (also plateau , high plateau or plateau , in the Spanish-speaking area Meseta , in the Portuguese area Planalto ) describes a flat or slightly hilly landscape or region that is significantly higher than the surrounding area or parts of it.
In the mountains, however , a high plateau can also have height differences of several hundred meters, such as B. in limestone mountains that are undercut by karst processes. Special forms can be found in the highlands of Tibet and in the Andes , where they have altitudes of 4000 or 5000 m.
Meanings of terms
In mountainous countries far from the coast , however, plateaus can also be several kilometers above sea level. Such plateaus can extend over several hundred kilometers (such as the highlands of Tibet ) and with a suitable climate can be densely populated up to an altitude of over 3000 m.
Some well-known plateaus are listed below, sorted by continent.
Plateaus in Europe
- many alpine plateaus, especially in the Limestone Alps and the Bohemian Massif , for example
- Altopiano della Predaia in the South Tyrolean Mendel Mountains
- Bavarian and Bohemian Forest , Bohemian-Moravian Heights and large parts of the Waldviertel
- Greina , a plateau in the Central Grisons Alps between the Greina and Diesrut passes and the Val Sumvitg
- Dead Mountains , Am Stein plateau ( Dachstein massif ) and Hochschwab
- Causse , a series of karst plateaus at 600–1250 m between the Massif Central and the Cevennes of southern France
- Swabian Alb , Franconian Alb and Jura
- Campo Imperatore in Italy
- Hardangervidda in Norway
- Castile Plateau ( Iberian Meseta )
- Lasithi plateau in Crete
Plateaus in Asia
- Tibetan Plateau (also Tibetan Plateau)
- Iran plateau
- partly Central Siberian mountainous region
- Dekkan Plateau in India
- less extensive plateaus:
Plateaus in Africa
Plateaus in America
- Piedmont in the eastern United States of America
- Anahuac Valley in the United Mexican States
- Quito Plateau in Ecuador
- Planalto Central do Brasil , a vast plateau in central Brazil
- Altiplano or Puna in Southeast Peru and West Bolivia between the Cordillera Occidental and Oriental (East Andes )
- Puna , a high desert in northwest Argentina