Only islands have the potential for zero county borders but suppose we extend the search from zero borders to one border? The United States has no fully-landlocked counties with a single border. There are several independent cities in the Commonwealth of Virginia that meet this definition (e.g., Fairfax City surrounded completely by Fairfax County, Charlottesville by Albemarle County, Staunton by Augusta County, and the like). While those are “county equivalents” for purposes of the decennial census and govern themselves independently of their surrounding counties, they are not technically counties. On the other hand, there are many examples of peninsula counties that can be approached from only one neighboring county by land.
View Larger Map
- Clallam Co., WA (Northwest corner of the Olympic Peninsula) – borders Jefferson Co., WA
- Door Co., WI (extending into Lake Michigan) – borders Kewaunee Co., WI
- Northampton Co., VA (Delmarva’s tip) – borders Accomack Co., VA
- San Francisco Co., CA (separates the bay from ocean) – borders San Mateo Co., CA
- Suffolk Co., NY (not really a peninsula but rather the eastern end of Long Island) – borders Nassau Co., NY
One of my favorites is Door County, Wisconsin. From its single border with Kewaunee County to its immediate south, it juts some fifty miles across open water. If Wisconsin could be thought of as mitten-shaped, Door County would be its “thumb,” with Green Bay to the western side and Lake Michigan to the east. Door county is well know for its ruggedly beautiful coastline, natural scenery and historic lighthouses. A short ferry trip connects the tip of the peninsula to an even more remote location, Washington Island