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Santander
—  Municipality  —

Flag

Coat of arms
Location of Santander
Santander is located in Spain
Santander
Location in Spain
Coordinates: 43°27′46″N 3°48′18″W / 43.46278°N 3.805°W / 43.46278; -3.805Coordinates: 43°27′46″N 3°48′18″W / 43.46278°N 3.805°W / 43.46278; -3.805
Country  Spain
Autonomous community  Cantabria
Province Cantabria
Comarca Santander Bay
Judicial district Santander
Founded 26 BC, as Portus Victoriae Iuliobrigensium 9 January 1755, granting the title of city
Capital Santander
Government
 - Alcalde Íñigo de la Serna (2007) (PP)
Area
 - Total 35 km2 (13.5 sq mi)
Elevation 15 m (49 ft)
Highest elevation 108 m (354 ft)
Lowest elevation 0 m (0 ft)
Population (2009)
 - Total 183,466
 - Density 5,241.9/km2 (13,576.4/sq mi)
 - Demonym Santanderino/a, santanderense, pejino/a, chani
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 - Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 39001-39012
Official language(s) Spanish
Website Official website

The port city of Santander is the capital of the autonomous community of Cantabria situated on the north coast of Spain between Asturias (to the west) and the Basque Country (to the east). Population in 2007 was about 184,000. Just over a third of Cantabrians live in Santander. The city is the home of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Santander.

Contents

History

Santander, circa 1590 - by Joris Hoefnagel.

In the Roman Empire, the town was known as Portus Victoriae Iuliobrigensium. Its present name is derived from St Emeterio (Santemter, Santenter, Santander), a martyr whose head was brought there in the 3rd century, along with that of St Celedonio, according to legend.[1]

In 1187, King Alfonso VIII of Castile made the abbot of San Emeterio lord of the town, and in 1248 Santander participated in the battle for Seville, receiving a coat of arms as reward.

The city owes its existence to the excellent harbour of the Bay of Santander. Santander was an important port for Castile in the later Middle Ages, and also for trade with the New World. It officially became a city in 1755.

In 1893 the freighter Cabo Machichaco exploded in the harbor, killing 500 people.

In the early 1900s Santander became the favored summer residence of King Alfonso XIII, who built the Palacio de la Magdalena as the residence of the royal family during the holidays. The city gained great popularity from this and from the Victorian enthusiasm for sea bathing and it remains popular with the Spanish for beach holidays today.

Gran Casino de Sardinero
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Great Fire of 1941

Santander fell victim to a great fire in 1941. Fanned by a strong south wind, the fire burned for two days. There was only one casualty, a firefighter killed in the line of duty, but thousands of families were left homeless and the city was plunged into chaos.

When it was over, the historic part of Santander was almost completely destroyed. The fire destroyed the greater part of the medieval downtown and gutted the city’s Romanesque cathedral.

Demography

As of 2004, Santander has a population of 183,800. The number has remained fairly steady since 1981. Spain's low fecundity rate and aging population have combined with rising immigration figures to keep the population growth fairly stagnant. Nevertheless, the Santander conurbation continues to sprawl as young families move away from the high cost of living in the heart of the city.

Paseo Pereda
Demographic evolution of Santander, Cantabria between 1981 and 2006
1981 1986 1991 1996 2000 2004 2006
180 328 186 145 191 079 185 410 184 264 183 799 183 955

Education

Sport

The La Liga club Racing Santander, founded in 1913, is based in the city.

Tourism

Today Santander remains a popular tourist destination. It is renowned for its mild, (though rainy) climate.

Gallery

Climate

Weather data for Santander
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Average high °C (°F) 11.6
(53)
13.8
(57)
17.4
(63)
20.2
(68)
23.0
(73)
26.1
(79)
26.6
(80)
25.8
(78)
21.7
(71)
18.0
(64)
15.5
(60)
12.5
(55)
Average low °C (°F) 6.1
(43)
7.2
(45)
9.0
(48)
11.1
(52)
12.7
(55)
15.7
(60)
17.0
(63)
16.6
(62)
14.4
(58)
11.1
(52)
8.9
(48)
6.3
(43)
Precipitation mm (inches) 154.2
(6.07)
127.5
(5.02)
100.8
(3.97)
100.4
(3.95)
72.9
(2.87)
50.7
(2)
42.1
(1.66)
47.5
(1.87)
72.8
(2.87)
94.0
(3.7)
142.2
(5.6)
140.0
(5.51)
Source: Agencia Estatal de Meteorología España 2007

External links

La Magdalena

Notes


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