Nordic countries are a group of countries in Northern Europe. These countries include Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Sweden, Norway, and the territories of the Aland Islands and the Faroe Island. Generally Nordic countries are confused with Scandinavia.
However, Scandinavia is not equivalent to the Nordic countries. Scandinavia primarily covers the countries of Northern Europe namely Denmark, Norway and Sweden having strong historical, cultural, and linguistic ties. In English usage, Scandinavia is a peninsula while the Nordic countries are recognized states.
Sweden and Norway (and a small part of Finland) rest on the Scandinavian Peninsula. Scandinavia and Finland together belong to a larger peninsula ‘Fenno-scandinavia’. Finns speak a non-Germanic language. Therefore, Scandinavia is part of Nordic countries as the remote Norwegian islands of Svalbard, Jan Mayen, Greenland and Finland are not in Scandinavia. Sometimes, the Faroe Islands are included in it.
Nordic countries have similar state, law and culture. Historically, Nordic countries have maintained close connections. Nordic countries have formed Nordic council for mutual cooperation but the cooperation with a larger group called European Union makes the Nordic cooperation relatively much smaller.
Nordic countries experience long, cold winters with warm days in the summer. Only a small part of Northern Norway and approximately half of Iceland is arctic. Of late, many Nordic countries have been facing issues with immigration, more particularly Sweden. The relaxed immigration policy of these countries has led to mass arrival of refugees from the Middle East (West Asia) countries – the war-torn countries.
Nordic countries form one of the largest regions in Europe with around 1.2 million square kilometers (463,000 square miles) land area. Despite having comparatively a large geographical area, the region is home to only around 24 million people. It accounts for just 4% of total European population. The Nordic countries contain some of Europe’s greatest natural wonders, and enjoy an excellent standard of living.