The location of the capitals is mainly based on several principles.
First, the principle is to place the capital as close to the state’s center as possible based on the predominant travel method (by a river, sea, etc.). It allows you to move around the country most quickly and rule it more efficiently.
The next geographical distortion principle comes with some of the things we associate cities with, like access to water, recourses, trade routes, and defensibility.
But sometimes, it seems that these principles of capital cities placement do not work. It is primarily due to the territorial changes that took place during the collapse of empires and states.
The map below shows nations whose capital is bordering another country. Microstates were not considered in this map.
Countries whose capital is bordering another country
Bratislava (Slovakia) is the only capital to border two sovereign states.
Other capital cities situated on an international border:
Asuncion (Paraguay): Neighboring country – Argentina
Bangui (Central African Republic): Neighboring country – the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Brazzaville (Republic of the Congo): Neighboring country – the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Kinshasa (the Democratic Republic of the Congo): Neighboring country – Republic of the Congo
Lome (Togo): Neighboring country – Ghana
Maseru (Lesotho): Neighboring country – South Africa
N’Djamena (Chad): Neighboring country – Cameroon
Vientiane (Laos): Neighboring country – Thailand
And finally, the map that shows nations whose capital is close to the border.
Countries whose capital is close to the border
Countries whose capital is within 10 miles (16 km): Asuncion (Paraguay), Bangui (Central African Republic), Bishkek (Kyrgistan), Bratislava (Slovakia), Brazzaville (Republic of the Congo), Bujumbura (Burundi), Damask (Syria), Djibouti city (Djibouti), Erevan (Armenia), Gaborone (Botswana), Kinshasa (the Democratic Republic of the Congo), Lome (Togo), Maseru (Lesotho), Mbabane (Eswatini), Monaco (Monaco), N’Djamena (Chad), Podgorica (Montenegro), Porto-Novo (Benin), Rome (Italy), San Marino (San Marino), Singapore (Singapore), Skopje (North Macedonia), Tashkent (Uzbekistan), Vaduz (Liechtenstein), Vatican City ( Vatican City), Vientiane (Laos), Zagreb (Croatia).
Countries whose capital is within 20 miles (32 km): Ashkhabad (Turkmenistan), Budapest (Hungary), Jerusalem (Israel), Kopenhagen (Denmark), Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Vilnius (Lithuania), Vienna (Austria).
Countries whose capital is within 50 miles (80 km): Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates), Amman (Jordan), Asmara (Eritrea), Belgrade (Serbia), Beirut (Lebanon), Belmopan (Belize), Berlin (Germany), Bern (Switzerland), Bissau (Guinea-Bissau), Brussel (Belgium), Bucharest (Romania), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Cape Town (South Africa), Conakry (Guinea), Dhaka (Bangladesh), Dili (Timor-Leste), Doha (Qatar), Dushanbe (Tajikistan), Freetown (Sierra Leone), Helsinki (Finland), Islamabad (Pakistan), Kabul (Afghanistan), Kathmandu (Nepal), Kigali (Rwanda), Kishinev (Moldova), Kuwait City (Kuwait), Kyiv (Ukraine), La Paz (Bolivia), Libreville (Gabon), Ljubljana (Slovenia), Malabo (Equatorial Guinea), Manama (Bahrain), Maputo (Mozambique), Oslo (Norway), Ottawa (Canada), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Riga (Latvia), Santiago (Chile), San Salvador (El Salvador), Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Seul (South Korea), Sofia (Bulgaria), Tallinn (Estonia), Tbilisi (Georgia), Tegucigalpa (Honduras), Thimphu (Bhutan), Tirana (Albania).
If you enjoyed these maps, you may also be interested in: “The age of borders: when were the world’s current borders first defined” and “10 of the world’s shortest borders”