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Interesting facts about Spain.
Some 60,000,000 people visit each year to spend their annual holidays
under the sun and clear blue skies of Spain. Many are emigrating to Spain
permanently because of the terrific weather in here in Spain.
This page will cover a little about the Spanish culture and facts about Spain.

Widely known for Flamenco music and dance, bullfights, fantastic beaches and lots of sunshine,
Spain has much more to offer than that. It is, and has been for thousands of years one of the cultural
centers of Europe. With so many things to do in Spain, why wait...


Spain is Europe's fourth largest country after Russia, Ukraine and France. It consists of the Spanish mainland, which occupies most of the Iberian peninsula apart from Portugal, the Balearic islands of Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera in the Mediterranean and the Canary Islands of Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, La Palma, Gomera, Fuerteventura and Hierro in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Morocco.

Over 98% of people are Roman Catholic, the rest being made up of a few Protestants, Muslims and Jews.
There are also around 500,000 gypsies living mainly in the larger cities.

Central European Time = GMT + 1 hour
Emergency numbers
  • British Consulate Tel: 95 235 2300
  • Emergency services Tel: 112
  • Ambulance Tel: 061
  • Fire service Tel: 080
  • National Police Tel: 091
  • Municipal Police Tel: 092
  • Civil Guard Tel: 062

To make an international call from Spain, dial 00 and then add the country code (UK 44; USA 1; Australia 61; Canada 1 Irish Republic 353; New Zealand 64) and the rest of the telephone number minus the first zero if there is one.
To call Spain from abroad, the country code is 00 34.

Business hours
The normal opening hours for shops are Monday to Saturday from around 9am or 10am until about 1.30pm.
After siesta they re-open from around 4pm until 8pm or 9pm. Large stores usually stay open all day. Most places are closed
on Sundays.Many businesses including restaurants and bars (especially in Madrid) close for holidays in August.

Internet and e-mail
Just about every town has an internet cafe with very reasonable prices

North Americans tend to over tip in Spain. Typically Spanish people leave a few coins after a meal but wouldn't have any
"15%" rule in their mind. If you're happy with the service, leave a tip, it will be appreciated.

In Spain there are odd 2.500 hours of sun per year, which is 6.8 hours per day, very high for European standards.
The driest place in Europe is Cabo Gata in Almería. One of the rainiest places in Europe is Bufera, Asturias. In Spain there
are twelve glaciers which occupy 290 hectares (1880 in 1894)

Learn Spanish
Learn Spanish the easy way with the Jane Cronin language school in the Costa Blanca. Don't worry if you don't live there
as Jane has Spanish learning cassettes and internet so anything is possible. Tel: (0034) 968 18 32 58 or email Jane Crolin

Survival SpanishEssential SpanishSpanish as it is spokenLearn Spanish as it is spoken

Opening Hours of shops, banks and museums
General opening hours for museums and monuments are 10am - 2pm and 5pm - 8pm. Most monuments are closed on
Mondays. Most shops are open similar hours but open at 9am. In some smaller towns, monuments and churches are usually permanently locked, the key being held by a caretaker and available to the public on request.

The Spanish usually greet and say goodbye to strangers in public places such as shops, bus stops and cafes.
It is common to shake hands when introduced and women usually kiss on both cheeks when they meet. Close friends may embrace and kiss on the cheek. It is quite common for the Spanish to omit please and thank you from their vocabulary.
Treat Spanish with respect and they will do the same to you.