Turkmenistan (also known as Turkmenia or Turkmania) is a country in Central Asia. The name Turkmenistan is derived from Persian, meaning "land of the Turkmen". Before 1991, it was a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, called the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic. It is bordered by Afghanistan to the southeast, Iran to the southwest, Uzbekistan to the northeast, Kazakhstan to the northwest, and the Caspian Sea to the west.
Turkmenistan is divided into 5 provinces or welayatlar and one independent city:
- Ahal Province
- Balkan Province
- Dashhowuz Province
- Lebap Province
- Mary Province
At 188,457 mi² (488,100 km²), Turkmenistan is the world's 52nd-largest country (after Spain). It is comparable in size to Cameroon, and somewhat larger than the US state of California.
One-half of its irrigated land is planted in cotton, making it the world's 10th-largest producer; and it possesses the world's fourth-largest reserves of natural gas as well as substantial oil resources.