Nias is an island off the western coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. Nias (Kepulauan Nias) is also the name of the archipelago, including the small Hinako Islands. Nias Island covers an area of 5,121.3 km2 (including minor offshore islands). It is mostly a lowland area rising to around 800 metres above sea level. It has about 800,000 inhabitants.
Nias is located in a chain of islands parallel to the west coast of Sumatra; Simeulue is about 140 kilometres northwest, and the Batu Islands (which are administered as part of Nias and have an ethnically similar population) are located about 80 kilometres southeast. This chain, which resurfaces in Nusa Tenggara in the mountainous islands of Sumba and Timor, is the forearc of the South Sumatra Basin along the Sunda Trench subduction zone.
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