Gibraltar – key data
Area: 6.5 km²
Population: 28,956 residents (2011 estimate, CIA). The population consists of Spaniards, Italians, British, Maltese, Portuguese,Germans and North Africans.
Population density: 4,455 people per km²
Population growth: 0.273% per year (2011, CIA)
Highest point: Rock of Gibraltar, 426 m
Lowest point: Mediterranean Sea, 0 m
Form of government: Gibraltar has been part of the United Kingdom since 1713 and a colony since 1830. The constitution dates from 1969. The House of Assembly consists of 18 members, 17 of whom are elected every four years. A spokesperson is provided by the members of theParliamentcertainly. The Council of Ministers is responsible for Gibraltar’s domestic policy and is chaired by the Prime Minister. Great Britain, on the other hand, determines foreign and defense policy.
Head of State: Queen Elizabeth II, since February 6, 1952, represented by Governor Sir Adrian Johns, since October 26, 2009
Head of Government: Chief Minister Fabian Picardo, since December 9, 2011
Language: English is the official language in Gibraltar (used in schools and in official documents). Also Spanish, Italian and Portuguese.
Religion: Roman Catholic 78.1%, Church of England 7%, other Christians 3.2%, Muslims 4%, Jews 2.1%, Hindus 1.8%, others 0.9%, no creed 2.9 % (2001 census)
Local time: CET. Between the last Sunday in March and the last Sunday in October there is summer time in Gibraltar (CET + 1 hour).
The time difference to Central Europe is 0 h in both winter and summer.
International phone code: +350
Mains voltage: 220/240 V, 50 Hz. In Gibraltar the same three-pole flat plugs are used as in Great Britain.
The Gibraltar peninsula is a British Oversea’s territory under the sovereignty of Great Britain. The Rock of Gibraltar is located at the western entrance to the Mediterranean on the southern Spain and is bounded in the north and west by Spain, while in the south the Mediterranean Sea forms the natural limit.
Gibraltar consists of a Jurassic limestone rock, which is connected to the Spanish hinterland by a flat, 800-meter-wide isthmus. It is the strategic location of the Rock of Gibraltar that earned it its place in history. The long high promontory, which rises steeply from the sea up to 450 meters in height, looks like an island from a distance, as the long and low isthmus can hardly be seen. Since this rock “guards” the only exit from the Mediterranean to the Atlantic, the strait between Europe and Africa is called the Strait of Gibraltar. Although the total area of the five kilometer long country is only 6.5 square kilometers, it is only 26 kilometers from. For more than 3000 years, Morocco, a distant peninsula, has held an important – because it is strategically favorable – position in history.
Apart from the Rock of Gibraltar, the peninsula consists only of a flat, sandy area. The Upper Rock towering steeply in the east of Gibraltaris just over a kilometer wide and about five kilometers long. With its Jurassic limestone, it is a lot older than the neighboring mountains on the Spanish mainland. In order to enlarge the land area of the barren peninsula, rubble and stone were broken out of the interior of the rock and carried into the sea. This resulted in a total of around 50 kilometers of tunnels in the rock. This form of land reclamation enabled the flat part of the peninsula to enlarge its already narrow area a little.
In addition to the artificial cavities created for land reclamation, there are a number of natural caves and grottos in the rock. The St. Michael’s Cave is particularly impressive which is one of the most remarkable natural grottos in Europe. The stalactites sticking down from the ceiling of the cave and the stalagmites rising like columns from the floor make this cave particularly spectacular. This grotto was already known to the Romans, as it is mentioned in the works of some Latin chroniclers. The height consists of a huge upper hall, which is connected to a smaller hall by several corridors with different slopes. Other narrow corridors lead to small lined up chambers that go deep into the rock.
Gibraltar is a suitable place to watch for migratory birds that pass here every year on their way between Europe and Africa. But the specialty of the wildlife on Gibraltar are the world-famous monkeys, which originally come from the Atlas Mountains of Morocco. They were brought to Gibraltar as pets of the British garrisons, where some animals started their own business and now populate the rock as semi-wild herds of monkeys. Legend has it that the British are in charge of Gibraltar as long as there are monkeys on the rock.
That climate of Gibraltar is Mediterranean / subtropical with mild winters and warm summers. There are two prevailing winds, the Levant, an easterly wind from the Sahara in Africa, the humid weather and causing warmer water temperatures and the Poniente from the west, the cooler air in and lower water temperatures brings. Rain occurs mainly in winter, the summers are mostly dry.
The average annual temperature in Gibraltar is 18 ° C, 21 ° C during the day and 15 ° C at night. In the coldest month of January, with sustained north winds, temperatures are between 10 and 17 ° C during the day and between 5 and 12 ° C at night, the average water temperature is 15 to 16 ° C.
In the warmest month of August, the daytime temperature is typically between 25 and 31 ° C, at night it stays above 20 ° C, the average water temperature is then 22 ° C.
Gibraltar has an average of 2,778 hours of sunshine a year, from 150 in November (5 hours of sunshine a day) to 341 in July (11 hours of sunshine a day).
Best travel time for Gibraltar
Gibraltar is best visited in the summer months of June, July and August.