An island in the eastern part of the North Atlantic directly west of the United Kingdom, on the continental shelf of Europe, Ireland covers an area of 70,280 sq km (27,135 sq mi). Comparatively, the area occupied by Ireland is slightly larger than the state of West Virginia. The island's length is 486 km (302 mi) N – S , and its width is 275 km (171 mi) E – W . The Irish Republic is bounded on the Nby the North Channel, which separates it from Scotland; on the NE by Northern Ireland; and on the E and SE by the Irish Sea and St. George's Channel, which separate it from England and Wales. To the W , from north to south, the coast is washed by the Atlantic Ocean.
Ireland's capital city, Dublin, is located on the Irish Sea coast.