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The Southern Continent was home to the initial human settlements on Pern. It was far larger than either of the two other continents, extending around the entire planet. It experienced a far more pleasant climate than the Northern or Far West Continents.
For the most part this continent was covered in dense forest and jungle, which greatly restrained the exploration that was desired by northern holders.
In the west of the continent the jungles gave way to desert, while in the south huge mountains separated them from snowy wastes.
This continent also hosted a large number of water-bodies. In particular, the Sea of Azov was a vast inland sea that penetrated the mountains in the south. It contained many rocks and small islands across its great width.
It was nearly impossible to forge a way through the dense foliage that regrew rapidly, and so exploration was limited.