Denmark on the world map. Map of Denmark
Map of Denmark with cities. Where Denmark is on the world map. The main geographical facts about Denmark - population, country area, capital, official language, religions, industry and culture.
Denmark fact file
Official name Kingdom of Denmark
Form of government Constitutional monarchy with one legislative body (Parliament)
Capital Copenhagen (Kobenhavn)
Area 43,070 sq km (16,629 sq miles)
Time zone GMT + 1 hour
Projected population 2015 5,372,000
Population density 124.7 per sq km (322.9 per sq mile)
Life expectancy 76.9
Infant mortality (per 1,000) 5.0
Official language Danish
Other languages Faroese, Greenlandic, German
Literacy rate 100 %
Religions Lutheran 91 %, other Protestant and Roman Catholic 2%, other 7%
Ethnic groups Danish 97.1 %, German 1.6%, Turkish 0.5%, Swedish 0.4%, British 0.2%, other 0.2%
Currency Danish krone
Economy Services 75%, industry 20%, agriculture 5%
GNP per capita US$ 29,000
Climate Temperate, with cold, wet winters and mild summers
Highest point Yding Skovhoj 173 m (568 ft) Map reference Page 286
Denmark is both the smallest and the southernmost of the Scandinavian countries. Most of its land area consists of the Jutland Peninsula, which pushes northward from the northwestern tip of Germany. The North Sea washes Denmark's western coast, the Skagerrak Strait lies to the north separating it from the southern coast of Norway, and the Kattegat Strait separates it from the southwestern tip of Sweden. The Baltic Sea is to the east and here, stretching almost as far as the southwestern tip of Sweden, is an archipelago of more than 400 islands. The largest of these islands is Sjaelland, on which is situated the Danish capital, Copenhagen.
Like the inhabitants of Sweden and Norway, modern Danes are descended from Viking invaders who from the fifth century ad moved northward into Scandinavia and then outward to other parts of western and eastern Europe. For much of its history, Denmark was the dominant country in Scandinavia. At the end of the fourteenth century, Norway and Sweden, as well as Iceland, were united under the Danish crown. The Swedes elected their own monarch fifty years later, but Norway continued to be part of Denmark for more than 400 years—until 1815, when the Congress of Vienna awarded it to Sweden in retaliation for Denmark having supported Napoleon Bonaparte.
Despite its neutrality, Denmark was invaded by Germany during 1940. Liberated by British forces in 1945, Denmark joined the NATO alliance following the war, and in 1973 became a member of the European Union. Denmark is a constitutional monarchy, with a hereditary monarch. Its single-house parliament, which is headed by a prime minister, is elected every four years.
Almost the whole of Denmark is low-lying and its surface is covered in many places by rocky glacial debris, most prominently in the undulating mass of moraine that runs down the center of the Jutland Peninsula. This divides the peninsula into two distinct regions. To the west is a sandy landscape with extensive dunes and lagoons along the North Sea coast. To the east lies a loam plain, which extends across the islands of the archipelago, as far as the Baltic coast. This fertile region supports significant crops of barley, wheat, and sugar beet and a thriving livestock and dairying industry. Fishing, which is still a leading Danish industry, is based for the most part on the extensive, shallow lagoons that lie along the western coastline of Jutland.
As well as constituting a significant proportion of the country's exports, Denmark's agricultural and fishing produce also provide the raw materials for food processsing industries, which are a major source of employment. Other significant industries, for which Denmark imports most of the raw materials, are iron and metal working, machinery manufacturing, and furniture making. Despite having a relatively high unemployment rate during much of the 1990s, Denmark is a prosperous country and Danes generally enjoy a high standard of living. An extensive social security system means that serious poverty is comparatively rare throughout the country.