Europe is the World’s second-smallest continent – 10,180,000 km² covering approximately 6.7% of the Earth’s land and 2% of the Earth’s surface .
It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the west, the Arctic Ocean to the north and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. The Ural mountains in Russia mark the eastern extreme.
The southern regions are higher and include the Pyrenees, the Alps and the Carpathian mountain ranges.
The longest river in Europe is the Volga (2,850 km) in Russia.
The highest mountain is Elbrus (5,642 m) in Russia.
Europe can be broadly divided into three regions as shown on the map left.
Europe can also be divided according to European Union member states and non-member states as shown on the map right.
Europe lies entirely in the Northern hemisphere and has four distinct seasons
|Spring||March, April, May|
|Summer||June, July, August|
|Autumn||September, October, November|
|Winter||December, January, February|
The climate of Europe can be broadly divided into five different climate types:
Deciduous forest – Four distinct seasons with warm summers and cold, wet winters. The trees shed their leaves in autumn.
Coniferous forest – Also known as Taiga, cold and dry with snowy winters and warmer summers.
Mediterranean – Warm to high temperatures with rainfall in the autumn and winter months.
Grassland – Hot summers and cold winters with above average rainfall.
Tundra – This area is characterised by a layer of permafrost (soil that has remained below freezing for at least two years. Winters are very cold, summers are warm and there is little rainfall.
Named after “the Schengen Agreement” signifies a zone where 26 different European nations, acknowledged the abolishment of their internal borders with other member nations, for the free and unrestricted movement of people, in harmony with common rules for controlling external borders and fighting criminality by strengthening common judicial system and police cooperation.
The 26 Schengen countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
Through Schengen zone, borders between European countries are only existent on maps, as to over 400 million nationals of 26 member countries the freedom of traveling passport check and border control free within and outside the area is guaranteed, as within a single country, since every country share the common travel and movement rights.