We started to look at Europe in your geography classes in English but unfortunately school was closed before we had the chance to look in more detail. So I have decided to post a few facts about Europe that I hope you will find interesting. For me Europe is an amazing continent so rich in culture and history. Every country has an exciting story to tell, amazing sites to visit and really delicious food to try. Lets look together at some fascinating facts about this most wonderful of continents and also the continent we are lucky enough to call home. Much of this information is adapted from Kids World Travel Guide.
There are 51 independent states in Europe and 44 recognised countries. Now 27 of these countries are in a political union (The European Union/EU).
1. The European continent is located in the northern hemisphere (arguably it is in the southern hemisphere too as some of France’s overseas territories are classified as being part of France e.g. Reunion) and mainly in the eastern hemisphere. Europe borders onto the Arctic Ocean in the North, the Atlantic Ocean in the west and the Mediterranean Sea in the South.
2. There are 50 countries in Europe with a total of more than 742 million people living on the continent.
3. Largest country: The European part of Russia covers more area than any other country. The three largest countries are: Russia, Ukraine and France.
4. Largest capital city: Moscow. The Russian capital city houses more than 13 million inhabitants within the city limits. Saint Petersburg is Russia’s second largest city with 5.3 million inhabitants. Moscow is the largest city that is entirely on the European continent!
5. Smallest country: Vatican City is the smallest country not only in Europe, but also in the world. The city state, an enclave within Italy, is the smallest country both by population and by size.
6. Biggest island: Greenland is the largest island which belongs to Europe – and is commonly referred to as the largest island in the world. The biggest island in Europe is Great Britain/UK.
7. Smallest town: Hum in Croatia is the smallest town not only in Europe but in the world. The town has only 21 inhabitants.
8. Most densely populated country: Monaco. The principality bordering the Mediterranean is the most densely populated country in the world.
9. Europe is the continent with the highest population density, which means on the European continent live the biggest number of people per square kilometre (km2)
10. Northernmost town: Ny-Ålesund on Svalbard in Norway. Only about 35 people live there all year round, but in summer, there are about 120 people staying in the town. The town is used as a base for explorations and research.
11. Northernmost capital city: Reykjavík in Iceland is Europe’s and the world’s most northern capital city.
12. Many countries in Europe, mainly in central Europe, do not have access to an Ocean and share national borders only with other countries. These are landlocked countries in Europe:
Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Belarus, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Slovakia, Serbia, Moldova, Macedonia, San Marino and Vatican City.
13. Highest mountain: Mount Elbrus in Russia (5642 m/ 18510 ft) is the highest mountain in Europe. The mountain is part of the Caucasus mountain range.
The highest peak in the European Alps is Mont Blanc. The mountain which is 4810 m/ 15781 ft high sits on the border of Italy and France. The Alps are also the longest and highest mountain range that is located entirely in Europe!
14. Longest river: The Volga River in Russia is Europe’s longest river. It is 3692 km/ 2295 miles long.
15. Most important commercial waterway: Danube. The river that flows through ten countries is the second longest river in Europe with 2860 km/ 1777 miles.
16. Longest Coastline: Norway has the longest coastline in Europe with over 100 000km and it is the second longest in the world.
17. Biggest Lake: Lake Ladoga near Saint Petersburg in Russia is Europe’s biggest lake and one of the world’s largest freshwater lakes. The lake is slightly smaller than Lake Ontario, which borders the USA and Canada.
18. Largest waterfalls: The Rhine Falls in Switzerland is the largest plain waterfall in Europe. They are 150 m and 23 m.
We hope that you found this information interesting and that you learned something new. If you would like to try a challenge why not try this quiz. See you next time!!