Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Capital, Currency & Language in Spain


Madrid is the capital and the largest city of Spain. It is located  in the center of the Iberian Peninsula. Madrid is the third most populous city in European Union, behind London and Berlin. It is located on the river Manzanares, between the autonomous communities of Castile and León and Castile-La Mancha.

Economically, politically and culturally, Madrid is one of the major cities of the world. Due to its economic output, standard of living, and market size, Madrid is considered the major financial center of the Iberian Peninsula and it hosts the headquarters of most of the major Spanish companies, as well as the headquarters of three of the world's 100 largest companies. Unfortunately, in 2012 it is suffering from the economic meltdown in the EU and the overcommitment of its banks. This results in very high unemployment, especially among the youth. As the capital city of Spain and residence of the Spanish monarch, Madrid is also the political center of Spain.

While Madrid possesses a modern infrastructure, it has preserved the look and feel of many of its historic neighborhoods and streets. Madrid is a busy place, but never too busy to entertain and dazzle its enthusiastic visitors from far and beyond. Museums, matadors, palaces and royal gardens set upon the banks of the Manzaneres River provide a glamorous backdrop for a very vibrant night life.


The Euro is the official currency of Spain and twelve other European countries including neighboring France and Portugal. As a result, if you are coming from a neighboring country, there is no need to exchange currency. If you need to exchange currency, I recommend a Bank. But the ideal way to travel is to us the ATM to get local currency and use plastic where you can, just make sure you contact your credit card company that you are going to be away.


Spanish is the major language in Spain and is spoken throughout the country.

However, you will find some regional versions that might surprise you. For example:
  1. Catalan is spoken in Catalonia, the Balearic Islands and in parts of Valencia.
  2. Basque is spoken in the mountainous Basque Country. It is also spoken in parts of Navarre.
  3. Galician is spoken in Galicia. It hasn’t received the official authentication from Asturias and Leon.

Most of these regional languages such as Catalan, Galician, Castilian, are based on Latin but they have their own accent. It is fun to listen to the differences.

English and German are some of the frequently spoken languages in the tourist area away from Madrid on the  Mediterranean coast. Additionally you will find a large population of African Immigrants who speak the language of their country.

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