What Countries Belong To Scandinavia?

September 6, 2018


What is the difference between Scandinavia and the term "The Nordic countries"? Wikipedia explains it like this:

Scandinavia is a group of countries in northern Europe that includes Denmark, Norway and Sweden. The term is most often used linguistically, to mean places that speak Scandinavian languages (also called the North Germanic languages). The Scandinavian languages (Swedish, Norwegian, Danish) are closely related, and many Scandinavians are able to understand some of the other languages, with some difficulty.

The Scandinavian Peninsula is a large peninsula reaching west from northern Europe over the north side of the Baltic Sea. Norway, Sweden and some of Finland are on this peninsula. However, Denmark, but not Finland, is seen as part of Scandinavia in the ethic sense. This is because Danish is a Scandinavian language but Finnish is not.

The term Nordic countries is sometimes used as a more correct geographical term, but the Nordic countries include Norway, Sweden, Denmark (including the Faroe Islands), Finland and Iceland. These five countries coordinate political and cultural activities through the Nordic Council.

Denmark, Sweden and Finland are also members of the European Union, but only Finland is part of the eurozone, meaning that it uses the euro as its currency. The other Nordic countries still use their own currencies, called krone or krona ("crowns"). Norway and Iceland, which are not members of the EU, are members of NATO and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). Only Denmark is a member of both the EU and NATO.