Spain: Facts and figures

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Size of Spain: The country has an area of about 505.000 sqm. This makes Spain the fourth largest country in Europe. Only Russia (European part), Ukraine and France have a larger area than Spain. Germany is a good 30 % smaller than Spain.

Population Spain: Spain has a population of about 46.5 million. This puts it only behind Russia, Germany, France and Great Britain in Europe. Ukraine overtook Spain in terms of population a few years ago.

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Population density: The population density is only about 91 inhabitants per square kilometre. For comparison: In Germany, 228 people live in the same area, far more than twice as many. Many regions in the interior of Spain are sparsely populated. There is still plenty of room for nature here.

Political structure: The division of Spain is not easy. In principle, the country is divided into 19 autonomous communities and cities. Most Autonomous Communities consist of several provinces. In total there are 50 provinces in Spain with the island. There are also two autonomous cities (Ceuta and Melilla in North Africa). The provinces are divided into municipalities.

Head of state: The official head of state of Spain is the king (Rey de España). However, he has above all representative tasks, the actual power lies with the parliament and the government.

Parliament: The parliament has 350 seats, there is no 5 percent hurdle or similar. This is why 12 parties are currently represented in the Spanish parliament (2015), two of them with only one member.

Currency: Spain is a founding member of the euro, the country’s only currency. On 1.1.2002 the peseta was replaced by the euro, about 166 pesetas were exchanged for one euro.

Capital: The capital Madrid lies 667 meters above sea level. It is the highest capital of the EU. In winter, snow sometimes falls in Madrid.

Largest cities: Including suburbs and suburbs, Madrid has 6.1 million inhabitants. The other really big city is Barcelona with approximately 5 million inhabitants in the metropolitan region. No other country in Europe has two such big cities. Valencia, Seville and Bilbao also have a population of over one million. Malaga is only just below the million mark.

Borders Spain: Spain has longer borders only with France and Portugal. There is also the border with Andorra. The two North African cities belonging to Spain have a border with Morocco. Gibraltar is British, so Spain also has a land border with Great Britain. Thus Spain has five neighbouring countries.

Largest island area: The largest Spanish island is Mallorca with an area of over 3600 km².

Island with the most inhabitants: The island in Spain with the largest population is Tenerife with approximately 890,000 inhabitants. However, this is quite scarce, also Gran Canaria and Mallorca have more than 800.000 inhabitants.

National Parks: Spain currently has 15 national parks. The oldest park (Ordesa National Park and Monte Perdido) was founded in 1919. It is in the Pyrenees. The newest national park is the Sierra de Guadarrama National Park not far from Madrid (since 2013). Six of Spain’s national parks are located on islands, four of them on the Canary Islands. The other nine are on the mainland.

Spain’s highest mountain: This is the Teide on Tenerife, a Canary Island. It is a proud 3718 meters high. On the mainland, the Mulhacen in the Sierra Nevada is the highest peak with 3482 meters.

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