Kyradi Beach near Vourvourou in Chalkidiki, Greece. Popular destination for local beach goers, but also important place for tourists coming for holidays. Crystal clear water and pleasant sand and rock formations atracts many to relax.
Morning panorama from the water at Porto Elea beach. Situated in Sithonia peninsula, the central part...
Morning at amazing Beach of Porto Elea, Halkidiki, Grece. Lovely weather, clear sea, nice cliff and b...
Porto Elea Beach in the morning. View from the land over the beach. Crystal water at Halkidiki, Grece...
Kalogria Reef is one of the most popular diving sites in Sythonia peninsula. Rocky islet slopes genty...
The Blue-Green sea is clearly visible on a lovely sunny day like this one here at the Second and most...
Beautifull mermaid sculpture on the rocks of Kabourotripes Beach. Made in 1997 by Dionisos of Filirou...
Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.
The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.
Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".
Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.
Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights.
In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states.
Text by Steve Smith.