North Africa refers to the region of the continent of Africa north of the Sahara desert.
Contact between North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa was limited until after the time of the European expansion.
The region is sometimes referred to as Maghreb.
Modern territories of northern Africa
The islands of Malta are occasionally included in the category "North Africa" because of their historical and linguistic links to the region, but are not considered to be part of the Maghreb.