Favourite European country?Posted by: UtherPenguin
Add your own answers (Too lazy to write all the countries)
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom or Britain, is a sovereign state in Europe. Lying off the north-western coast of the European mainland, the country includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK that shares a land border with another state: the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the UK is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea in the east and the English Channel in the south. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. The UK has an area of 243,610 square kilometres, making it the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world and the 11th-largest in Europe.The United Kingdom is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 64.1 million inhabitants. It is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of governance. Its capital city is London, an important global city and financial centre with the second-largest urban area in Europe, and its metropolitan area is the largest in European Union, with a population of about 14 million according Eurostat.
Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic to the west of Great Britain, from which it is separated by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and St Georges Channel, and after which it is the largest island of the British Isles archipelago. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth.Politically, Ireland is divided between the Republic of Ireland, which covers five-sixths of the island, and Northern Ireland, a part of the United Kingdom, which covers the remaining area and is located in the north-east of the island. The population of Ireland is about 6.4 million. Just under 4.6 million live in the Republic of Ireland and just over 1.8 million live in Northern Ireland.The island's geography comprises relatively low-lying mountains surrounding a central plain, with several navigable rivers extending inland. The island has lush vegetation, a product of its mild but changeable oceanic climate, which avoids extremes in temperature. Thick woodlands covered the island until the Middle Ages. As of 2013, the amount of land that is wooded in Ireland is about 11% of the total, compared with a European average of 35%.
Italy, officially the Italian Republic, is a unitary parliamentary republic in Southern Europe. Italy covers an area of 301,338 km² and has a largely temperate climate; due to its shape, it is often referred to in Italy as lo Stivale. With 61 million inhabitants, it is the 5th most populous country in Europe. Italy is a very highly developed country and has the third largest economy in the Eurozone and the eighth-largest in the world.Since ancient times, Etruscan, Magna Graecia and other cultures have flourished in the territory of present-day Italy, being eventually absorbed by Rome, that has for centuries remained the leading political and religious centre of Western civilisation, capital of the Roman Empire and Christianity. During the Dark Ages, the Italian Peninsula faced calamitous invasions by barbarian tribes, but beginning around the 11th century, numerous Italian cities rose to great prosperity through shipping, commerce and banking. Especially during the Renaissance, Italian culture trhived, producing scholars, artists, and polymaths such as Leonardo da Vinci, Galileo, Michelangelo and Machiavelli.
Norway, officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a sovereign and unitary monarchy whose territory comprises the western portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula, Jan Mayen, and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard. The Antarctic Peter I Island and the sub-Antarctic Bouvet Island are dependent territories and thus not considered part of the Kingdom. Norway also lays claim to a section of Antarctica known as Queen Maud Land. Until 1814, the Kingdom included the Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Iceland.Norway has a total area of 385,252 square kilometres and a population of 5,109,059 people. The country shares a long eastern border with Sweden. Norway is bordered by Finland and Russia to the north-east, and the Skagerrak Strait to the south, with Denmark on the other side. Norway has an extensive coastline, facing the North Atlantic Ocean and the Barents Sea.King Harald V of the House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg is the current monarch of Norway. Erna Solberg became Prime Minister in 2013, replacing Jens Stoltenberg. A constitutional monarchy since 1814, state power is divided between the Parliament, the King and his Council, and the Supreme Court.
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and covers the northern third of the island of Great Britain. It shares a border with England to the south, and is otherwise surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the south-west. In addition to the mainland, the country is made up of more than 790 islands, including the Northern Isles and the Hebrides.Edinburgh, the country's capital and second-largest city, was the hub of the Scottish Enlightenment of the 18th century, which transformed Scotland into one of the commercial, intellectual, and industrial powerhouses of Europe. Glasgow, Scotland's largest city, was once one of the world's leading industrial cities and now lies at the centre of the Greater Glasgow conurbation. Scottish waters consist of a large sector of the North Atlantic and the North Sea, containing the largest oil reserves in the European Union. This has given Aberdeen, the third-largest city in Scotland, the title of Europe's oil capital.The Kingdom of Scotland emerged as an independent sovereign state in the Early Middle Ages and continued to exist until 1707.
Sweden, officially the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. Sweden borders Norway and Finland, and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Øresund. At 450,295 square kilometres, Sweden is the third-largest country in the European Union by area, with a total population of about 9.7 million. Sweden has a low population density of 21 inhabitants per square kilometre, with the population mostly concentrated in the southern half of the country. About 85% of the population lives in urban areas. Southern Sweden is predominantly agricultural, while the north is heavily forested.Germanic peoples have inhabited Sweden since prehistoric times, emerging into history as the Goths/Geats and Swedes/Svear and contributing to the sea peoples known as the Vikings. Sweden emerged as an independent and unified country during the Middle Ages. In the 17th century, the country expanded its territories to form the Swedish Empire. The empire grew to be one of the great powers of Europe in the 17th and early 18th centuries. Most of the conquered territories outside the Scandinavian Peninsula were lost during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Portugal, officially the Portuguese Republic, is a sovereign nation-state in Europe. It is located on the Iberian Peninsula, and it is the westernmost country of mainland Europe, being bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the west and south and by Spain to the north and east. Aside from continental Portugal, the Portuguese Republic holds sovereignty over the Atlantic archipelagos of Azores and Madeira, which are autonomous regions of Portugal. The country is named after its second largest city, Porto, whose name derives from Latin "Portus" and the Celtic place-name "Cale".The land within the borders of the current Portuguese Republic has been continually fought over and settled since prehistoric times. The Celts and the Romans were followed by the Visigothic and the Suebi Germanic tribes, which were themselves later invaded by the Moors. These Muslim peoples were eventually expelled during the Christian Reconquista of the peninsula. By 1139, Portugal established itself as a kingdom independent from León.
Spain, officially the Kingdom of Spain, is a sovereign state located on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe. Its mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea except for a small land boundary with Gibraltar; to the north and northeast by France, Andorra, and the Bay of Biscay; and to the west and northwest by Portugal and the Atlantic Ocean. Along with France and Morocco, it is one of only three countries to have both Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines. Spain's 1,214 km border with Portugal is the longest uninterrupted border within the European Union.Spanish territory also includes the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean, the Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean off the African coast, three exclaves in North Africa, Ceuta, Melilla, and Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera that border Morocco, and the islands and peñones of Alborán, Chafarinas, Alhucemas, and Perejil. With an area of 505,992 km², Spain is the second largest country in Western Europe and the European Union, and the fifth largest country in Europe.
France, officially the French Republic, is a unitary sovereign state comprising territory in western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. Metropolitan France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean; due to its shape, it is often referred to in French as l’Hexagone. France is one of only three countries to have both Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines. France has a population of 66 million. France is a semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the nation's largest city and the main cultural and commercial center. The Constitution of France establishes the country as secular and democratic, with its sovereignty derived from the people.During the Iron Age, what is now France was inhabited by the Gauls, a Celtic people. The Gauls were conquered by the Roman Empire in 51 BC, which held Gaul until 486. The Gallo-Romans faced raids and migration from the Germanic Franks, who dominated the region for hundreds of years, eventually creating the medieval Kingdom of France.