Greece (Greek Hellas), officially known as the Hellenic Republic (Elliniki Dimokratia), country in southeastern Europe, occupying the southernmost part of the Balkan Peninsula. Famed for the beauty of its landscape, Greece is dominated by mountains and sea. The Aegean, Mediterranean, and Ionian seas constitute the country’s eastern, southern, and western borders, and no part of mainland Greece is more than 100 km (60 miles) from the water. Islands constitute about one-fifth of the country’s land area.
Greece has historically been poor with inadequate communications, but in the period after World War II ended in 1945 it has experienced rapid economic and social change. Tourism and shipping make major contributions to the Greek economy, which has also benefited from payments arising from Greece’s membership in the European Union (EU). The country’s merchant ship fleet is one of the largest in the world.
Greece’s heritage and geographical position make it part of the European, Balkan, and Mediterranean worlds. The country is bordered to the north by (from east to west) Turkey, Bulgaria, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), and Albania.