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The Kingdom of Spain is mainly located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Territory includes the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean, the Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean and a number of smaller islands off the coast of Morocco. On the European mainland Spain borders the English enclave of Gibraltar in the south, Portugal in the west and Andorra and France in the east. The origins of modern Spain are found in the 11th Century BC when Phoenicians settled the area. With nearly 5,000 kilometers of coastline, the country developed into an important maritime power over the centuries. The discovery of America by Christopher Columbus briefly also helped Spain rise to world power. Today, 46.7 million people live in the kingdom spanning 500,000 square kilometers. The four official languages are Castilian (Spanish), Catalan, Basque and Galician.
You will find a very diverse landscape in Spain. Several mountain ranges run through the country. With peaks of over 3,400 meters, the Pyrenees are the most impressive mountain range in Spain and draw numerous sports enthusiasts on holiday in summer and winter. Formigal is one of the most famous ski resorts in the region. During the warm summer months, the Balearic Islands and Costa Brava are real tourist attractions. There is hardly a European who does not associate Majorca, Ibiza or Lloret de Mar with holidays and sunshine. The Canary Islands – also known as “Islands of Eternal Spring” – are a popular year-round destination. In recent years, Fuerteventura has become a kite-surfing hotspot where several international competitions are held annually.
But Spain has much more to offer than just sandy beaches. You can impressively experience the extensive history and culture of the country in the big cities of Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, Valencia and Zaragoza. Well-known artists such as Dalí and Pablo Picasso lived and worked here. The Spanish national football team has achieved world fame by winning the European and World Championship titles.