Do you know the smallest countries in the world? If not, today we'll tell you all about them and why you should consider visiting them soon.
From the remoteness of the pacific, to land locked in Europe, these countries are so small you can almost walk around them in a few hours.
5. San Marino
San Marino is an enclave nation surrounded by northeastern Italy. The City of San Marino serves as the capital of the country of sixty square kilometres, and there are only eight other municipalities.
The nation has its origins in a tiny monastery found on Monte Titano by Saint Marinus in the fourth century. The City of San Marino grew up at the base of the mountain, and the mountain's three peaks, or "Three Towers," are a prominent national symbol.
San Marino claims to be the oldest continuous republic in Europe, and many of its constitutional documents date back to the early seventeenth century.
San Marino elects two heads of state, or captain regents, every six months, a system that traces its origins to the Roman consuls.
Its military is also one of the smallest in the world and still features a small crossbow corps.
The Sammarinese people only number thirty thousand, but the country claims one of the wealthiest populations in the world. The country is a popular tourist destination.
Island nations are often among the smallest in the world, and Tuvalu fits that mold. At twenty-six square kilometres, this island in the Pacific of eleven thousand people is spread out across four main islands and smaller atolls.
Located between Australia and Hawaii, Tuvalu features white sandy beaches and some of the finest snorkelling and diving sites in the world.
If you’re planning a holiday, you should visit soon. The islands' low elevations have made this country particularly vulnerable to rising sea levels.
Tuvalu is also the smallest country in the Commonwealth, still recognising the Queen as the official sovereign and including the Union Jack in its own flag.
Another Pacific island nation, Nauru, checks in at twenty-one square kilometres and a population of just under ten thousand citizens.
That means Nauru is the smallest island nation in the world and the second smallest country by population. The island has been inhabited for at least three thousand years, and the twelve-pointed star on Nauru's flag represents the traditional twelve clans of the population.
Unlike many of its fellow Pacific island neighbours, Nauru is not much of a tourist destination. It has been used for phosphate mining during much of its recent history, so many of the beaches and surrounding waters have been polluted by industrial runoff.
The island can also be difficult to reach, with limited direct flights. The closest neighbouring island to Nauru is three hundred kilometres away. Most flights arrive via Fiji, Kiribati or Tuvalu.
At just over two square kilometres, Monaco is one of the smallest countries in the world. It is technically a city-state with a population of about 39,000 citizens.
The ratio of people to land actually makes Monaco one of the most densely populated countries. The enclave city is surrounded by France on three sides and has a compact but glamorous coastline along the Mediterranean Sea.
Visitors do not need a visa to enter from France or EU, so tourism is obviously popular in the resort city. The border with Italy is about fifteen kilometres away.
Monaco is famous for its wealth, the Monte Carlo Casino, and the Monaco Grand Prix.
Just picture the setting for every James Bond movie and you’ll get the idea. Monaco is a principality, ruled by the House of Grimaldi since the thirteenth century, though today operates as a constitutional monarchy.
1. Vatican City
The home of the Pope is by far the smallest country in the world, coming in at just under half a square kilometre.
Vatican City was once part of the city of Rome but is now an enclave with total independence and observer status at the United Nations.
The Vatican has a total population of less than five hundred, but tourists swarm the city on a daily basis to see St. Peters Basilica, the Sistine Chapel, and other Catholic treasures.
The thousands of visitors increase the city's temporary population by several factors.
The Pope is the sole regent of the Vatican City and is vested with all legislative, executive, and judicial powers. Among his many duties is overseeing the world's smallest railway system, with tracks only measuring three hundred meters.
What are the world's smallest countries?
While we've looked at the 5 smallest countries in the world, there are many more. In fact you might be surprised by some of the smallest inside the top 20.
In reverse order, starting with the largest they are; Luxembourg, Fiji, Singapore, Dominica, Tonga, Andorra, Seychelles, Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, Malta, Maldives, Saint Kitts, Marshall Islands, Liechtenstein.
Then you have San Marino, Tuvalu, Nauru, Monaco and Vatican City.
Rhys is a successful entrepreneur with a PHD from University Colleague London with a strong interest in product reviews, blogging and traveling. Based in Melbourne, he loves to write about electronics, tech and travel.