Learn more about Spain:
- Myths and Misconceptions About Spain
- Interesting Facts About Spain: Geography
- Interesting Facts About Spain: Politics
- Interesting Facts About Spain: Culture
- Interesting Facts About Spain: Food
- Interesting Facts About Spain: Wine
Essential Facts About Spain
Famous Spaniards: Spain is the birthplace of artists Salvador, Dali Francisco Goya, Diego Velazquez, and Pablo Picasso, opera singers Placido Domingo and Jose Carreras, architect Antoni Gaudi, Formula 1 World Champion Fernando Alonso, pop singers Julio Iglesias and Enrique Iglesias, actors Antonio Banderas and Penelope Cruz, flamenco-pop act The Gypsy Kings, film director Pedro Almodovar, rally driver Carlos Sainz, poet and playwright Federico Garcia Lorca, author Miguel de Cervantes, historical leader El Cid, golfers Sergio Garcia and Seve Ballesteros, cyclist Miguel Indurain and tennis players Rafa Nadal, Carlos Moya, David Ferrer, Juan Carlos Ferrero and Arantxa Sánchez Vicario.
What else is Spain famous for? Spain invented paella and sangria (though the Spanish don't drink Sangria as much as people believe) and is home to the Camino de Santiago. Christopher Columbus, though probably not Spanish (no-one's quite sure), was funded by the Spanish monarchy.
Country Code: 34
Population: nearly 45 million.
Biggest Cities (by population):
Read about my Best Spanish Cities
Spain's Autonomous Regions: Spain is split up into the following autonomous regions (each region's capital is listed in brackets): Madrid (Madrid), Catalonia (Barcelona), Valencia (Valencia), Andalusia (Seville), Murcia (Murcia), Castilla-La Mancha (Toledo), Castilla y Leon (Valladolid), Extremadura (Merida), Navarra (Pamplona), Galicia (Santiago de Compostela), Asturias (Oviedo), Cantabria (Santander), Basque Country (Vitoria), La Rioja (Logroño), Aragon (Zaragoza), Balearic Islands (Palma de Mallorca), Canary Islands ( Las Palmas de Gran Canaria/Santa Cruz de Tenerife).
Find out about my Top Ten Regions in Spain.
Currency: The currency in Spain is the Euro and it's the only currency accepted in the country. The currency until 2002 was the peseta, which in turn had replaced the escudo in 1869.
To look after your money in Spain, take a look at my Budget Travel Tips.
Official Language: Spanish, often referred to as castellano in Spain, or Castillian Spanish, is the official language of Spain. Many of Spain's autonomous communities have other official languages. Read more about Languages in Spain.
Government: Spain is a monarchy; the present king is Juan Carlos I, who inherited the position from General Franco, the dictator who ruled Spain from 1939 until 1975.