Facts about Greece

Facts about Greece


Size and Location
A peninsular country of 131,940 sq km (water: 1,140 sq km, land: 130,800 sq km), possessing an archipelago of about 2,000 islands in Southern Europe.

Area - comparative
slightly smaller than Alabama

Mild climate with wet winters, hot and dry summers

Mostly mountains (highest point: Mount Olympus 2,917 m) with ranges extending into the sea as peninsulas or chains of islands


According to the last official census in 2021, the population of Greece is estimated at 10.5 million inhabitants.

Age structure
Total: 10,482,487
0-24 years: 2,467,326
25-49 years: 3,385,106
50-74 years:  3,423,531
75+ years:  1,206,524

Life expectancy
Total Population: 82.8 years - Male: 79.8 years - Female: 84.7 years

Noun: Greek(s)

Greek Orthodox 81-90% (2021). Freedom of religion is guaranteed by the Constitution and other religious groups have their own places of worship.

Greek 99% (official), English, German, French, Italian. The Greek language used today originates directly from the language of Homer and the literature of Classical Greece, but it has also radically changed throughout the centuries adapting to the progress of historical conditions. The most ancient written monuments of the Greek language date back to the 15th century BC and are records of Linear B' - the syllabary writing system used in the Mycenaean Greece from the 15th up to the 13th century BC. We also have records of many literary works in the Greek language from the 1st millennium BC.

The Greek language has influenced hundreds of languages in the world. The percentage of the English vocabulary deriving from the Greek language is 12%. The Greek language is the basis for thousands of terms used in science, mathematics and technology.

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 97.94% - male: 98.5%, female: 97.4% (2018 est.)

According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) approximately 23,792 Greeks were studying abroad in 2021. During the 2022-2023 academic year 2,539 Greeks were studying in the United States (source 2023 Open Doors, IIE).


Country name
Conventional long form: Hellenic Republic, conventional short form: Greece - local short form: Ellas or Ellada

Government type
Parliamentary Republic


National holiday
Independence Day, 25 March (1821)

Executive branch
Chief of state: President Katerina SAKELLAROPOULOU (since 13 March 2020)
Head of government: Prime Minister Kyriakos MITSOTAKIS (since 8 July 2019 - second term)
Cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister

Legislative branch
Unicameral Parliament - 300 members are elected by direct popular vote to serve four-year terms - elections: elections last held 7 July 2019 – voting: universal and compulsory

Judicial branch
Supreme Judicial Court; Special Supreme Tribunal; all judges appointed for life by the president after consultation with a judicial council

European Union
Greece joined the European Union in 1981

euro (EUR) -note: on 1 January 2002, the euro became the sole currency for everyday transactions within the member countries


SOURCES:, U.S. Department of State, Area Handbook of the US Library of Congress - The Naftemporiki newspaper- IIE Open Doors 2020 – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs – The World Factbook - UNESCO – Institute for Statistics - Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)