Catalonia (or Catalunya) is an autonomous community of Spain located north-east of the Iberian Peninsula. Out of over 7 million inhabitants spread between its four provinces – Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, and Tarragona, over 5 million live nearest to the capital and largest city – Barcelona. Catalonia enjoys a remarkable geographical diversity for its small size. Tall snowy mountain peaks of the Pyrenee mountains border Catalonia in the north. In the south, rocky hills and tall coniferous forests stretch the whole way alongside the Mediterranean coast, which in Catalonia covers 580 kilometres (360 miles). Nestled in between the Pyrenees and the Med, is a natural depression of the Valley of the river Ebre. The whole region is also home to hundreds of volcanic lakes, lush farmlands and natural waterfalls.
Did you know?
Over thirty percent of Catalonia’s territory is protected to allow the ecosystems to flourish. The region is also home to an amazing eighteen natural parks, among them one national natural park.
In 1931, Catalonia was declared independent by general Francesc Macia. However, the region’s separation from Spain only lasted…three days.
Catalonia has always been known as the hub of industrialisation and manufacturing in Spain – 1 out of every 4 vehicles made in Spain is produced here. Also, Barcelona is where Spain’s first rail tracks were manufactured.
The region of Catalonia has been officially recognised as a European Region of Gastronomy. The award is presented to highlight distinctive food cultures within Europe.