Explore Greece

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Greece, officially the Hellenic Republic, and historically Hellas, with a population of about 10 million, is a country in Southern Europe, politically also considered part of Western Europe.
Greece consists of a mountainous, peninsular mainland jutting out into the sea at the southern end of the Balkans, ending at the Peloponnese peninsula (separated from the mainland by the canal of the Isthmus of Corinth).
Eighty percent of Greece consists of mountains or hills, making the country one of the most mountainous in Europe. Mount Olympus, the mythical abode of the Greek Gods, culminates at Mytikas peak 2,917 m (9,570 ft), the highest in the country.
The Aegean Sea lies to the east of mainland Greece, the Ionian Sea to the west, and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. Greece has the 11th longest coastline in the world at 13,676 km (8,498 mi) in length, featuring a vast number of islands (approximately 1,400, of which 227 are inhabited), including Crete, the Dodecanese, the Cyclades, and the Ionian Islands among others. Eighty percent of Greece consists of mountains, of which Mount Olympus is the highest at 2,917 m (9,570 ft).
Greece's name differs in comparison with the names used for the country in other languages and cultures, just like the names of the Greeks. Although the Greeks call the country Hellas or Ellada and its official name is Hellenic Republic, in English the country is called Greece, which comes from Latin Graecia as used by the Romans and literally means 'the land of the Greeks', and derives from the Greek name Γραικός; however, the name Hellas is sometimes used in English too.
Greece primarily has a Mediterranean climate, featuring mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers. This climate occurs at all coastal locations, including Athens, the Cyclades, the Dodecanese, Crete, the Peloponnese and parts of the Sterea Ellada (Central Continental Grece) region.
Greece has been a member of what is now the European Union since 1981 and the eurozone since 2001, NATO since 1952, and the European Space Agency since 2005. It is also a founding member of the United Nations.
Greek cuisine is as an example of the healthy Mediterranean diet (Cretan diet). Greek cuisine incorporates fresh ingredients into a variety of local dishes such as moussaka, stifado, Greek salad, spanakopita and souvlaki. Some dishes can be traced back to ancient Greece like skordalia[citation needed] (a thick puree of walnuts, almonds, crushed garlic and olive oil), lentil soup, retsina (white or rose wine sealed with pine resin) and pasteli (candy bar with sesame seeds baked with honey). Throughout Greece people often enjoy eating from small dishes such as meze with various dips such as tzatziki, grilled octopus and small fish, feta cheese, dolmades(rice, currants and pine kernels wrapped in vine leaves), various pulses, olives and cheese. Olive oil is added to almost every dish.
Athens is the capital and the largest city in the country (its urban area also including Piraeus).

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