MINI SIMMONS BASQUE COUNTRY
The Basque Country is an autonomous community in northern Spain with celebrated cuisine, strong cultural traditions and a distinct language that pre-dates the Romance languages. The vibrant riverside city of Bilbao is a hub of architecture and design, where gritty factories and shipyards give way to cutting-edge landmarks such as the titanium-clad Guggenheim Museum along a revitalized waterfront.
The Basque Country or Basque Autonomous Community was granted the status of nationality within Spain, attributed by the Spanish Constitution of 1978. The autonomous community is based on the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country, a foundational legal document providing the framework for the development of the Basque people on Spanish soil, although the territory of Navarre was left out and made into a separate autonomous community.
Currently there is no official capital in the autonomous community, but the city that holds the Basque Parliament, the headquarters of the Basque Government and the Basque Autonomous Community’s President’s residency (Ajuria Enea Palace) is Vitoria-Gasteiz, located in the province of Álava. Whilst Vitoria-Gasteiz is the largest municipality in area, with 277 km2 (107 sq mi), Bilbao (or Bilbo in Basque) is the largest in population, with 353,187 people, located in the province of Biscay within a conurbation of 875,552 people.
The term Basque Country may also refer to the larger cultural region (Basque: Euskal Herria), the home of the Basque people, which includes the autonomous community.