Spain, officially the Kingdom of Spain (Spanish: Reino de Espaa), is a sovereign state primarily located on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe. It is comprised of two large archipelagos, the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea and the Canary Islands off the North African Atlantic coast, as well as two cities on the North African mainland, Ceuta and Melilla, and several small islands in the Alboran Sea near t Except for a short land border with Gibraltar, its landmass is bounded on the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea; on the north and northeast by France, Andorra, and the Bay of Biscay; and on the west and northwest by Portugal and the Atlantic Ocean. It is the only European nation with an African border (Morocco), and its African territory accounts for almost 5% of its population, mainly in the Canary Islands but also in Ceuta and Melilla. It is one of only three nations, along with France and Morocco, that boast both Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts.
Spain is the biggest nation in Southern Europe, the second largest in Western Europe and the European Union, and the fourth largest country on the European continent, with an area of 505,990 km2 (195,360 sq mi). Spain is the sixth biggest country in Europe and the fifth largest in the European Union, after Italy. Madrid is Spain’s capital and biggest city; other significant cities include Barcelona, Valencia, Seville, Bilbao, and Málaga.
Around 35,000 years ago, modern humans landed on the Iberian Peninsula. The peninsula evolved Iberian civilizations alongside ancient Phoenician, Greek, and Carthaginian towns until it fell under Roman control about 200 BCE, when the area was renamed Hispania, based on the older Phoenician name Span or Spania. The region was captured throughout the Middle Ages by Germanic tribes and subsequently by the Moors. Spain became a united nation in the 15th century, after the marriage of the Catholic Monarchs and the conclusion of the peninsula’s centuries-long reconquest, or Reconquista, in 1492. Spain established one of history’s first worldwide colonial empires in the early modern era, leaving a huge cultural and linguistic heritage of over 500 million Spanish speakers, making Spanish the world’s second most spoken first language, after Chinese and ahead of English.
Spain is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary administration. It is a middle power and developed nation with the fourteenth biggest nominal GDP and the sixteenth largest purchasing power parity economy in the world. It is a member of the United Nations (UN), the European Union (EU), the Council of Europe (CoE), the Organization of Ibero-American States (OEI), the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and the World Trade Organization (WTO), among numerous other international organizations.