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The Faroe Islands consist of 18 islands and only 1 is uninhabited.
The Faroese language is a variation of old Norse, similar to Icelandic, and is related to the other Scandinavian languages.
The islands were formed by volcanic activity 30 million years ago. The Faroese descend from Viking farmers who arrived to the islands in the 9th century. The archipelago was annexed to Norway in the 11th century and became part of Denmark in the 14th century. In 1849 the Faroes were officially incorporated into Denmark and given two seats in the parliament. Great Britain took control of the islands during WW II and in 1946 the Faroese parliament declared the islands independent of Denmark. In 1948 the Faroes agreed to be a ’self-governing community within the Kingdom of Denmark’, and two decades later decided not to join the European Community

Click here for the Lonely Planet's fact file on the Faroes.


Area: 1399 sq km (545.6 sq mi)
Population: 45,500
Capital city: Tórshavn (pop 16,500)
Language: Føroyskt (Faroese)
Religion: Protestant, Evangelical Lutheran
Government: Self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark
Prime Minister: Anfinn Kallsberg