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Geography >> Europe >> Spain History and Timeline


Capital: Madrid

Population: 46,736,776

The Geography of Spain

Borders: Portugal, Gibraltar, Morocco, France, Andorra, Atlantic Ocean, Mediterranean Sea

Country of Spain Map
Total Size: 504,782 square km

Size Comparison: slightly more than twice the size of Oregon

Geographical Coordinates: 40 00 N, 4 00 W

World Region or Continent: Europe

General Terrain: large, flat to dissected plateau surrounded by rugged hills; Pyrenees in north

Geographical Low Point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m

Geographical High Point: Pico de Teide (Tenerife) on Canary Islands 3,718 m

Climate: temperate; clear, hot summers in interior, more moderate and cloudy along coast; cloudy, cold winters in interior, partly cloudy and cool along coast

Major Cities: MADRID (capital) 5.762 million; Barcelona 5.029 million; Valencia 812,000 (2009), Seville, Zaragoza, Malaga

Major Landforms: Spain is part of the Iberian Peninsula. Major landforms include the Andalusian Plain, Cantabrian Mountains, the Pyrenees, Maseta Central Plateau, Sistema Central Mountains, the Sierra de Guadalupe Mountains, and the Canary Islands.

Major Bodies of Water: Tagus River, Ebro River, Duero River, Guadalquivir River, Lake Sanabria, Lake Banyoles, Bay of Biscay, Atlantic Ocean, Mediterranean Sea

Famous Places: Alhambra fortress in Granada, El Escorial, Sagrada Familia, Aqueduct of Segovia, Pamplona, Palacio Real, Costa del sol, Ibiza, Barcelona, Mosque of Cordoba, Plaza Mayor in Madrid, Montserrat

Alhambra fortress

Economy of Spain

Major Industries: textiles and apparel (including footwear), food and beverages, metals and metal manufactures, chemicals, shipbuilding, automobiles, machine tools, tourism, clay and refractory products, footwear, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment

Agricultural Products: grain, vegetables, olives, wine grapes, sugar beets, citrus; beef, pork, poultry, dairy products; fish

Natural Resources: coal, lignite, iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, uranium, tungsten, mercury, pyrites, magnesite, fluorspar, gypsum, sepiolite, kaolin, potash, hydropower, arable land

Major Exports: machinery, motor vehicles; foodstuffs, pharmaceuticals, medicines, other consumer goods

Major Imports: machinery and equipment, fuels, chemicals, semifinished goods, foodstuffs, consumer goods, measuring and medical control instruments

Currency: euro (EUR)

National GDP: $1,406,000,000,000

Government of Spain

Type of Government: parliamentary monarchy

Independence: The Iberian peninsula was characterized by a variety of independent kingdoms prior to the Muslim occupation that began in the early 8th century AD and lasted nearly seven centuries; the small Christian redoubts of the north began the reconquest almost immediately, culminating in the seizure of Granada in 1492; this event completed the unification of several kingdoms and is traditionally considered the forging of present-day Spain.

Divisions: Spain is divided up into 17 groups called "autonomous communities". There are also two "autonomous cities." They are listed below by area size. The last two, Ceuta and Melilla are the "cities." The largest by population are Andalusia and Catalonia.

Sagrada Familia
  1. Castile and Leon
  2. Andalusia
  3. Castile-La Mancha
  4. Aragon
  5. Extremadura
  6. Catalonia
  7. Galicia
  8. Valencian Community
  9. Murcia
  10. Asturias
  11. Navarre
  12. Madrid
  13. Canary Islands
  14. Basque Country
  15. Cantabria
  16. La Rioja
  17. Balearic Islands
  18. Ceuta
  19. Melilla
National Anthem or Song: Himno Nacional Espanol (National Anthem of Spain)

National Symbols:
Country of Spain Flag
Description of flag: The flag of Spain was adopted on December 6, 1978. It has three horizontal stripes. The outer two stripes are red and the inner stripe is yellow. The yellow stripe is twice as wide as the red stripes. Within the yellow stripe (and to the left) is the Spanish coat of arms. The flag is called "la Rojigualda."

National Holiday: National Day, 12 October

Other Holidays: New Years' Day (January 1), Epiphany (January 6), Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Labor Day (May 1), Assumption (August 15), National Festival of Spain (October 12), All Saints Day (November 1), Constitution Day (December 6), Immaculate Conception (December 8), Christmas (December 25)

The People of Spain

Languages Spoken: Castilian Spanish 74%, Catalan 17%, Galician 7%, Basque 2%; note - Castilian is the official language nationwide; the other languages are official regionally

Nationality: Spaniard(s)

Religions: Roman Catholic 94%, other 6%

Origin of the name Spain: The word "Spain" is the English version of the Spanish word for the country "España." The word "España" comes from the Roman name for the region Hispania.

Famous People:

Geography >> Europe >> Spain History and Timeline

** Source for population (2019 est.) is United Nations. GDP (2011 est.) is CIA World Factbook.

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