Europe and the EU (28 countries in 2019) are second identities for many nationalities in this part of the world. As such, they exert a strong influence on their daily life, lives as a whole, and their future.
Not only that, but Europe offers such a fantastic selection of travel destinations to choose from. Not many can say that they have visited them all, so there are plenty of new experiences to choose from for almost anyone – each has something unique, welcoming and special to offer. France remains, as always, one of the most popular travel destinations, not only in Europe but in the world, but there are numerous other small pearls just waiting for you to discover and explore, such as Montenegro or Moldova. Sometimes the most amazing travel experiences are those that are just around the corner! They are ideal, too, for just a short trip or city break. So take a look at what´s on offer and prepare to be surprised!
In geographical terms, Europe is neither the largest continent nor the most heavily populated. Europe has just 750 million inhabitants, give or take a few, compared with Africa´s 1.2 billion or Asia´s 4.4 billion (2016). The global population is currently estimated to have rounded the 7 billion mark.
Many are surprised to discover that there are actually no less than 50 independent countries geographically, but only 28 who are members of the EU. A number of countries such as Russia are geographically a part of Eastern Europe. The Eastern European border runs along the Ural Mountains. There are also countries such as Greenland which is not European in a geographic sense, but which belongs to Denmark and thus has a strong geopolitical connection to Europe.
The geography may be a bit complicated in some cases, but having got that out of the way, let´s turn to all the wonderful things to see and do that await you in Europe. Oh, just one more thing before we do…just where does the name Europe originate from?
In Greek mythology, Europe was not a geographical destination at all, but the name of the mother of King Minos of Crete, whose father was Zeus. Europe was a beautiful, noblewoman of Phoenician descent whose name was given to Europe, and was mentioned for the first time in Homer´s epic poem “The Iliad”. Some interpretations say the word Europe is derived from ”eurys” meaning large or broad and “ops” meaning (look/eyes or face), and thus Europa was a woman with large eyes. The illustration above is a section of a painting by the famous painter, Titian.
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