Geomorphologically, the Balkan peninsula differs from other peninsulas of southern Europe in that it is more widely connected with central Europe. The northern boundary of the peninsula is marked by the Drava river valley, by part of the Danube in the area around the Iron Gate and by the foot of the Stara Planina (Balkan mountains) as far east as Varna on the Black Sea coast. The northern part of the Peninsula is massive and compact, but the southern part is geomorphologically strongly dissected in a system of peninsulas, islands and bays. The southernmost part is formed by the Peloponnèse peninsula joined to the mainland only by the narrow isthmus at the head of the Gulf of Corinth.
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