What Is the Smallest Capital in the World?

When this is about the smallest capitals in the world, you will usually see Vatican mentioned. This is a famous city-state with a unique position and history, but it is not the smallest.

Ngerulmud is the capital city of the island nation of Palau in the Pacific Ocean, and this appears to be the smallest capital city in terms of population.

According to Wikipedia, its population is only 271 people, but in some other sources you will see a number of 390. In any case, this is an exceptionally small number.

This is yet another example where the national capital is far smaller than the largest cities in the country. In this case, the former capital Koror is far larger by population and by importance.

The interactive map below will show you where Palau is located and also the position of its capital Ngerulmud. The map is zoomable so you can see all the details of the country and in the capital city.

This capital city is just a capitol complex that includes three main buildings for each governmental branch, and a few coastal homes. Ngerulmud was inaugurated as the country capital in 2006 when the capital complex was open. Note also that this is the youngest capital city in the world.

No doubt that not many people know about this city. The same probably holds for the country Palau which includes 340 islands in the western Pacific. So this all belongs to what is described as Oceania.

I mentioned Vatican above, so this is a city which is presented here in the site in some other aspects. It makes sense mentioning him here as well because of its own incredibly small population which is only around 453 people. This is according to Wikipedia and the number is for the year 2019. Some other sources mention 1000 inhabitants.

Note that Vatican as a city is limited by its borders that are the state borders, so it cannot expand. This is not so with Ngerulmud that will likely grow in physical size and also in population.


So this was the smallest capital in the world, not much to say here because the capital is more or less only three buildings where the most important institutions of the country are located.

In this video you can see more about the Palau country:

Check also my texts about the hottest capital city in the world and about capitals that are actually two cities.

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