Spain Fast Facts

spain map

 

 

Fast Facts

  • Area: 505,182 square kilometers
  • Population: 47 million
  • Official Language: Spanish
  • Regional Languages: Catalan, Basque, Galician, Valencian

A Very Brief History

  • Invaders from north Africa made Spain part of the Muslim world in the 8th century. Seven centuries of reconquest ended in 1492.
  • The past century or so Spain suffered the loss of its last major colonies, civil war in the 1930s and forty years of the dictator General  Franco.
  • Franco died in 1975, restoring the monarchy to King Juan Carlos. The young king stayed on as head of a parliamentary monarchy and today Spain is a democracy.

Spain Climate

  • Mild winters, dry and hot summers, and little rainfall in the Mediterranean;
  • Cold winters, mild summers and rainfall throughout the year in Atlantic areas;
  • Rain, cold winters, mild summers and snow in the highest regions;
  • Warm temperatures, little rainfall, strong winds in the Canary Islands.

Siestas and Fiestas

  • The siesta for shops and businesses is from approximately 2pm until 5pm, while bars and restaurants close from about 4pm until about 8 or 9pm. It is common for Spaniards to eat dinner after 10pm.
  • Every city and village has it’s local festivals or ferias throughout the year. Although there will be crowds it’s a great chance to have fun and celebrate as the Spanish do.