About: European continent has an area of 10,180,000 sq km large which is equivalent to 2% of the earth’s surface and about 6.8% of its land area. Australia is the only continent which is smaller than Europe. Presently, the continent comprises of 51 independent countries. Europe’s biggest country is Russia and smallest one is Vatican, area wise. Europe is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north; by Atlantic Ocean to the west; and by Mediterranean Sea to the south.
Background: Europe is the birthplace of Western civilization which is marked with the rise and establishment of Greek Empire followed by Roman Empire. The decline of the Western Roman Empire marked the end of ancient history of Europe and the beginning of the successive era in Europe is known as the “Middle Ages”. The credit of changing the whole world by art creativity, exploration, science , and Renaissance humanism goes to Europe. Europe is credited to change itself from the “old continent”, and ultimately the whole world, to the modern world. In the modern era, Europe had been and continues to be a predominant player in global political affairs. During 16th to 20th centuries, different European countries ruled the various parts of world including Americas, most of Africa, Oceania, and the majority of Asia.
Beginning of Modern Era:The Industrial Revolution was the watershed for Europe which started at the end of the 18th century. This revolution brought tremendous change and rise to economic, cultural, and social change in Europe, especially Western Europe, which also benefited to the remaining world. The two world wars were largely fought on European soil, which brought a sharp decline in Western European dominance in global political and economical affairs by the mid-20th century as the WW – II led to the emergence of United States and Soviet Union as two prominent blocks. Post WW – II period was followed by cold war period and rest is history.
Modern Europe: The next biggest thing in Europe was the formation of European Union (EU). Euro is the standard currency for most countries in EU, and the EU’s Schengen area requires no visa among its member states to travel each other’s territory.
Tourism: The top most visited countries are in Europe due to their historical significance, beautiful locations, modern infrastructure and variety of other reasons.