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Our State Geography in a Snap: Three Regions Overview

Reprinted with permission from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction website.


The three landforms of North Carolina make up the three major geographic regions of the state: the Coastal Plain, the Piedmont, and the Mountains. The Coastal Plain Region is usually divided into two sub regions: the Outer Coastal Plain, commonly referred to as the Tidewater; and the Inner Coastal, which is less impacted by the effects of the ocean as it is located further inward.

North Carolina regions by county

North Carolina Counties - Click to see a large version

View the list of North Carolina counties.

North Carolina physical regions

Physical boundaries that divide the regions                               Link to 1985 Geologic Map of North Carolina.  From North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources.                 


"Geography of North Carolina," North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, (accessed March 26, 2012).

Raisa, E. 1940. Landforms of the United States. Reprinted in The North Carolina Atlas Revisited.

NCDENR. 1985 Geologic Map of North Carolina (links to a number of maps). (accessed September 2, 2015).

Additional Resources:

North Carolina One Map. North Carolina Geospatial Portal. (accessed September 2, 2015).

Image Credits:

North Carolina Geological Survey. Geologic map of North Carolina: North Carolina Geological Survey, General Geologic Map1985. (accessed September 2, 2015).





your website tells me no information about North Carolinas regions it has pictures not information.



You can click on the links for each region and it will open up a page with information. This page is meant to be more of an introductory. 

Erin Bradford, Government and Heritage Library


woah,thx a lot!!!


Sure! Thank you for reaching out to us. If you have questions or need help, please reach out. Our email address is

Kelly Eubank, Government and Heritage Library


oh,i didn't understand at first.


i love this it helps a lot


this does not help


i agree


It was a nice refresher on the physical topography of North Carolina, with the Piedmont, mountains, and coastal plain.


The 3 NC geographic regions are officially depicted (and taught in schools) as the mountains, piedmont, and coastal. Throughout NC, local news and weather broadcasters commonly describe events occurring in locales differentiated among the "mountains", "foothills", and "piedmont" areas. If piedmont means "foot of the mountain or foothills", how are these subject "experts(?)" correct in their information descriptions? Also, if these broadcasters are misinforming the public, why is this permitted to continue?

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