Magellan, Strait of

Magellan, Strait of

Strait, linking the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean, between the southern tip of South America and Tierra del Fuego. It extends westward from the Atlantic between Cape Vírgenes and Cape Espíritu Santo and curves northwest at Froward Cape to reach the Pacific. Lying mostly within Chilean territorial waters, it is about 350 mi (560 km) long and 2–20 mi (3–32 km) wide. Named for Spanish navigator Ferdinand Magellan, the first European to pass there (1520), it remained an important shipping route until the Panama Canal opened in 1914.


Magellan, Strait of Spanish Estrecho de Magallanes

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