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This is the third largest ocean in the world - after the Pacific and Atlantic oceans - and covers an area of 73,555,715sq km. The Indian Ocean is bordered by Africa on the west, India on the north and Australia on the east, but to the south there is open sea as far as the Antarctic. The southern half of the Indian Ocean has no large islands except Madagascar. Those in the northern half include Sri Lanka and Socotra besides many smaller ones.