40+ Interesting Facts About Greece

  1. Greece is an ancient country in southern and southeastern Europe. It is located at the junction of Europe, Asia, and Africa
  2. Greece is a predominantly mountainous country. Around 80% area is mountainous, which makes it one of the most mountainous countries in Europe.
  3. More than 90% of Greeks are adherents of Eastern Orthodox Christianity. It is one of the highest (or 2nd highest after Serbia) percentages in the world.
  4. It has 3rd longest coastline in Europe and one of the longest in the world, with 13,676 km in length. (Source)
  5. The initial rules for urban waste management originated in Ancient Greece around 2,400 years ago. But the first landfills for rubbish were dug 5,000 years ago in the Greek city of Knossos. (Source)
  6. Ancient Greece is the cradle of civilization and the birthplace of western philosophy, literature, drama, democracy, the Olympic Games, the theatre, etc.
  7. Greece became a united country in the 4th Century B.C. under Philip of Macedon and conquered most of the known world under his son Alexander the Great.
  8. Roman Empire annexed Greece in the 2nd Century, which  remained part of the Byzantine Empire and Ottoman Empire in later centuries. It gained independence from Ottoman Empire in 1830 (declared in 1821).
  9. The world’s oldest archaeological site is present in Thessaly, Greece. The Theopetra Cave is 135,000 years old. The 23,000 years old wall inside this cave is the world’s oldest known man-made structure. (Source)
  10. Greece is the 5th oldest country in the world, founded around 800 BC. (Source)
  11. The Greek drachma is Europe’s oldest currency, initially minted around 650 BC. (Source)
  12. The population of Greece is the 9th oldest in the world. The average age in Greece is 43.5 years. (Source)
  13. The Greek national anthem is the world’s longest national anthem by lyrics. There are 158 verses in this anthem. (Source)
  14. Greece has around 6,000 islands, the 5th highest in Europe and the 10th highest in the world. (Source
    Map of Greece (in white) and its neighboring countries
    There are 6,000 islands in Greece
  15. Vikos Gorge in northwest Greece is the world’s deepest gorge. This gorge in the Pindus Mountains is around 3,000 feet deep. (Source)
  16. Greece has the largest fleet of merchant navy ships in the world. The total worth of its overall fleet is around $100 billion. (Source)
  17. Greece has the 3rd lowest abortion rate in Europe (after Portugal and Austria) and one of the lowest in the world. It is just 5 per 1,000 women. (Source)
  18. The unemployment rate in Greece is 18.1%. It is the 3rd highest unemployment rate in Europe after Bosnia and Kosovo. (Source)
  19. Greece is the 3rd biggest exporter of marble in the world. It is just behind Turkey and Italy in marble export. (Source)
  20. The world’s 2nd oldest known cemetery is in Athens, Greece. The Kerameikos was established in 3000 BCE. (Source)
  21. Santorini in Greece is considered one of the best and most visited islands in the world. It is famous for its uniquely beautiful buildings and historical significance. (Source
    Santorini island in Greece
    Santorini is one of world's most visited islands
  22. Buildings in many islands of Greece are colored blue and white. However, it is not due to the color of the Greek flag. The white color is to reflect sunlight from building materials. Blue is a readily available color in this region and is used to paint roofs.
  23. On 10th July 1977, the temperature in the Greek capital Athens reached 48 Celsius (118.4 F). It is the highest temperature ever recorded in Europe. 
  24. Athens is also the warmest city in Europe. The average maximum temperature in Athens is 30.7 Celsius. (Source)
  25. Three of the four oldest cities in Europe are present in Greece. (Source
  26. Greece was the first country in history to default on its debt. (Source
  27. Greece is the 2nd largest producer of olives in the world.
  28. Around 98% of people in Greece are of Greek ethnicity. It is one of the largest single ethnicities in the world.
  29. Voting is compulsory in Greece for citizens less than 70 years of age. Non-compliance with this law can result in imprisonment.
  30. Greece is one of several countries with compulsory military service for men. The mandatory military service period is one year. (Source)
  31. There are more than 4,000 traditional dances in Greece. These dances are performed during weddings, festivals, holidays, births, name days, etc. (Source)
  32. Greek is the 3rd oldest written language in the world. It originated in 1600 BC. (Source)
  33. Greece has the highest number of archaeological museums in the world.
  34. Dadia forest is the only area in Europe where all four European vultures species are present.
  35. Ikaria in Greece is one of the five blue zones in the world. People in these areas are known to live longer and healthier than in other parts of the world. (Source)
    A village in Ikaria, Greece
    Ikaria is one of the world's 5 blue zones
  36. In Greece, wearing high heels and bringing food and drink is prohibited in ancient sites. The purpose of this ban is to protect these sites from any damage. (Source
  37. The first nude scene in European cinema was shown in a Greek movie in 1931.
  38. Greece is known as the most sexually active country in the world. (Source)
  39. The Pindus Mountains in Greece are one of the best wildlife destinations in Europe. It is famous for thousands of plant species and numerous animals. (Source)
  40. In Greece, Name Days celebrations have more importance than actual birthdays. It is a celebration on the day when a person receives a saint’s name.
  41. The evil eye is the most famous superstition. It originated in Ancient Greece. (Source)


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