Interesting facts about Spain

Interesting facts about Spain

Ordinary people when they hear the word “Spain” think of flamenco and bullfighting. Knowledgeable tourists think of tapas, paella, gazpacho, the Prado Museum or the Temple of the Holy Family. But those interesting facts about Spain, which are given in the article, probably do not know even experienced travelers.

Country and people

Spanish flagView of Spain from Space

  • According to one version, the name of the country (España) comes from the word Hispania, which in Phoenician means “land of rabbits.
  • Throughout history, Spain has been inhabited by different ethnic groups, including Iberians, Celts, Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Visigoths, and Arabs.
  • Euskera, spoken in the Basque Country, is one of the oldest languages in the world.
  • The Spanish Empire was one of the strongest in the world.
  • Spain ceded Gibraltar to Britain in 1713.
  • An interesting fact about Spain and its history: in two world wars the country has remained neutral.

Soccer is the most popular sport in SpainSpaniards are proud of their beaches

  • Spanish is the third most popular language in the world, spoken by about 400 million people.
  • Soccer is considered a national sport. Spain won its first World Cup victory in 2010.
  • The match between soccer clubs Real Madrid and Barcelona is the main sporting event and can almost completely paralyze the country.
  • An interesting fact about the people of Spain is that the country ranks first in the world in organ donation.
  • Same-sex marriages in the country are allowed by law since July 3, 2005.
  • There are about 8 thousand kilometers of beaches in Spain.

Javier Bardem is the first Spanish actor to win an Oscar.Amancio Ortega, founder of Inditex

  • One of the interesting facts about the country is that 44 places in Spain are recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites.
  • The country drinks about 11.2 liters of alcohol per year, which is almost twice the average. Spain is third in the world (and first in Europe) for drinking gin and first in Europe for cocaine consumption. However, it is one of the European countries with a lower suicide rate. However, these interesting facts about Spain are not necessarily related at all.
  • Javier Bardem became the first Spanish actor to win an Oscar for his role in No Country for Old Men.
  • Amancio Ortega, founder of Inditex (Zara, Pull & Bear, Massimo Dutti, Bershka, Stradivarius, Zara Home), is the richest man in Spain and the second richest in the world (as of 2016) after Bill Gates. Ortega earns about 2.5 million euros a day.
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Cities and provinces

Madrid's Puerta del Sol SquareKilometro Cero in Puerta del Sol Square

  • An interesting fact about the country can also be considered the belief that Madrid is the geographical center of the country, and the Puerta del Sol square in the capital is the exact center of Madrid or even the entire Iberian Peninsula. In fact, however, this opinion has been refuted by new data.
  • In 1978 it was thought that the center of Madrid was the back facade of the Prado Museum. Now it is considered to be the intersection of streets Goya and Serrano.

Monument Sagrado Corazón in Cerro de los ÁngelesMadrid Metro

  • As for the center of the entire Iberian Peninsula, the Puerta del Sol was considered such in the XVIII century, now it has “moved” to the place Cerro de los Ángeles, about 10 kilometers south of Madrid. The 14th century Nuestra Señora de los Ángeles chapel and the Sagrado Corazón monument, built in 1919, are now located there.
  • What we can say with certainty is that on the Puerta del Sol is the Kilometro Cero, or Km. 0 (“kilometer zero”) plate, the point from which all roads were supposed to be measured. It appeared in the 18th century during the reign of Philip V, after the six main roads crossing the entire peninsula were built.
  • Another interesting fact about Spain: the subway in Madrid is considered the second longest in Europe and the sixth longest in the world. It is 141 miles long, a number that continues to grow.

The University of Salamanca has witnessed many historic events.Cadiz on the ocean.

  • The University of Salamanca, founded in 1218, is the oldest in the country.
  • Barcelona is the most visited city in Spain, with about 15 million tourists a year.
  • Cadiz is considered the oldest city in Spain and Europe, it was inhabited by the Phoenicians.
  • La Boquería (Mercado de Sant Josep) in Barcelona is the biggest market of Catalonia.
  • The most visited place in Catalonia’s capital is the Sagrada Familia, the Sagrada Familia, which has been under construction for over 200 years and is still unfinished.

Gastronomy

Olives are one of Spain's tapas favorites.Spanish red wine is best known around the world

  • Spain is the second country in the world in the number of bars per person. The only country that beats it by this indicator is Cyprus.
  • Many bars offer free tapas to accompany a drink, usually olives, nuts and dried fruit or anchovies in a vinegar and olive oil marinade (boquerones en vinagre).
  • Spaniards usually eat lunch at 2 to 3 p.m. and dinner between 9 and 10 p.m.
  • An interesting fact about the country from the area of gastronomy: Tomatoes, potatoes, avocados, tobacco and cocoa were imported to Europe through Spain.
  • After France and Italy, the kingdom is the third largest wine producer in the world and the first country in the world in terms of vineyards.
  • Although Spain is more famous in the world for red wine than white, most wineries produce white wine.
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Gazpacho is considered one of the oldest Spanish dishesSpain is the leader in the production of olive oil

  • The Spanish (especially those from Cadiz) claim to have invented fried fish. Britain had trade links with Cadiz in the 18th century, so it is believed that the British borrowed the idea of Fish and Chips from its inhabitants, but other sources name Belgium or Portugal instead of Spain.
  • The oldest dishes in Spain are considered gazpacho, garlic soup (sopa de ajo) and cocido.
  • Spain is the main producer of olive oil in the world, about 44% of the total world production. The country produces twice as much oil as Italy and four times more than Greece.
  • Most homeowners prefer to buy fresh bread every day, most often a baguette.

The most expensive restaurant in the world - SublimotionLa Tomatina tomato fight

  • Spain is also a major producer of saffron, an important ingredient in paella.
  • Spain is the only country in Europe where bananas are grown.
  • The most expensive restaurant is in Ibiza, it’s called Sublimotion, and a dinner there may well cost 1,700 euros per person.
  • Spain hosts the grandest tomato battle, La Tomatina, which takes place in the town of Buñol (autonomous community of Valencia).

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25 interesting facts about Spain

Interesting Facts about Spain

The Kingdom of Spain is located on the Pirinean Peninsula and is part of southwestern Europe. The country is almost entirely surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea and is a popular resort. Spain also owns the Canary Islands, the Balearic Islands and other small islands, as well as some cities in North Africa.

More than 80 million people visited this country in 2018, and it is the second most visited country after France. Spanish is spoken by 437 million people worldwide, although only 47 million people live in Spain.

What else interesting things can be said about this country? In this collection of 25 interesting facts about Spain!

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  1. Today Spain consists of 17 autonomous regions, but it hasn’t always been this way. Two medieval rulers, Isabella of Castile and Ferdinand of Aragon, managed to unite the disparate territories. Their marriage marked the beginning of modern Spain, and before that the country was a separate state with different languages.
  2. The language, which is known worldwide as Spanish, in Spain itself is considered Castilian. In addition, Galician, Aran, Bac, and Catalan have semi-official status. There are also unofficial and regional languages. Generally speaking, there is a great linguistic diversity in Spain itself!
  3. Spaniards have completely different daily routine than other Europeans. They usually have lunch from 1 to 3 pm (approximately), and dinner at 10 pm. They have afternoon breaks, or siestas, which involve resting from 1 to 5 pm. While other Europeans are working, Spaniards have a quiet hour, as this time is the hottest.
  4. Spain has greatly influenced modern art since the 1800s. It gave the world such masters as Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, Joan Miró and Antoni Gaudi. They were the founders of such art movements as Surrealism, Expressionism, Cubism, and Art Nouveau.
  5. Curiously enough, the Spanish anthem has no words. More precisely, it does, but the text is not popular, and usually only the musical version is used at all events and competitions. This is due to the fact that Spain is divided into autonomies, which have not been able to agree with each other. In 2008, there was an attempt to create a single anthem text, but not everyone approved it. And so it remains the oldest anthem in the world without words!
  6. Spain has 45 sites that are on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Among them are the works of Antoni Gaudi, cave paintings, the palm forest in Elche, the Tower of Hercules, and much more.
  1. Spaniards have a special attitude to marriage, the divorce rate is only 17, while only 5% of children are born and raised in single parent families.
  2. In Madrid, you can visit the restaurant Sobrino de Botín, which is the oldest in the world. It made it into the Guinness Book of Records as the oldest restaurant in the world, although to this day other places are trying to challenge this title. It was founded in 1775 and was the center of the birth of Madrid cuisine.
  3. There are so many festivals in Spain, for example, the Romeria de Nuestra Senora de le Cabeza festival has been held for 800 years. Also popular is La Tomatina, where everyone throws tomatoes, the San Fermin bull festival and many other activities.
  4. The Spanish Christmas Lottery has the largest prize pool in the world. As of 2017, it has a jackpot of 720 million euros and a total prize payout of 2.3 billion euros.
  5. Spain was the third country to allow same-sex marriage in 2005. In the same year adoption of children by same-sex couples became available. Spain is statistically a very tolerant country, more than 80% of the residents have nothing against non-traditional orientation.
  6. Madrid is the official capital of Spain. In addition, it is the geographical center of the country. The capital is the Puerta del Sol, which is also the center of the state and the Spanish radial road system.
  1. Spain is the largest producer of olive oil in the world. It produces about 44% of the total amount of oil. The largest volume is produced in the region of Andalusia.
  2. This country has the largest number of bars in Europe. In Spain, there is no problem to find a bar or cafe, day or night.
  3. Spain is considered one of the best countries for a beach holiday. If you add up the length of all the beaches, it turns out as many as 8 thousand kilometers!
  4. Spain is one of the few European countries, where partly legalized marijuana. Here you can grow it for personal use, but it is forbidden to smoke in public places. It is worth noting that you can smoke marijuana safely on personal property without fear of a fine.
  5. Spain managed to maintain its neutrality in World War II. Despite the fact that the position of the head of state at the time was on the side of Germany, the country did not officially take part in any world war.
  6. One of the most popular Spanish traditions on New Year’s Eve has spread around the world. The Spaniards eat exactly twelve grapes of different varieties by the chime. It is believed that in this case good luck will attend the entire year.
  7. There is a tradition of having two last names in Spain. Traditionally, residents of the country use two last names – one on the father’s side and one on the mother’s side.
  1. Although Spain is commonly referred to as an ordinary country, in fact it is still a kingdom. The current king of Spain is Philip VI, who took the throne recently, in 2014.
  2. This country has an excellent life expectancy, ranking third after Japan and Switzerland. The average life expectancy is 83.1 years. At the same time, by 2050 Spain may be among the oldest countries in the world, as its population will consist of people over 60 years old by 30%.
  3. Spain is the leader in Europe in the number of organ and tissue transplants. In this country, every resident is a donor, unless he or she writes a refusal. The level of donation is very high – while the European average is 19 people per million, in Spain there are 35 donors per million people.
  4. More than 90% of the residents of this European country consider themselves Catholics. Only 13% go to church on weekends.
  5. With all the positive aspects of Spain, this country has the highest unemployment rate not only in Europe, but also in the world. There are about 50% of the unemployed here.
  6. Spaniards speak very loudly and use sign language. Many of their gestures are used instead of words, although tourists are very unaccustomed to such emotional gestures.
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Spain is a wonderful country with a rich history and unusual traditions. Its history goes back more than 20 centuries, and during this period the country has experienced various difficulties. But it was the Spaniards who were the first to colonize the American continent and spread their language around the world!

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