What Defines a Country?

Hello all, first off – a big thanks to those who have chosen to ‘follow’ me. Recently I visited my 30th country and while it was not quite the milestone I had hoped for, it does lend itself nicely and coincidentally (as it’s the 30th) to this brief blog.

What makes a country a country? The world is made up of archipelagos, territories, principalities, special autonomous regions and zones but why? I wrote a bit about this on my Hong Kong blogs and even my native Wales is a principality.

In my view, if it has a flag, its own currency and I need to pass through passport control it is a different country, hence I class HK and Macau as countries. But that in itself does not answer the question out right. To visit Scotland or Wales needs no documentation, nor do they have their own currency (save Scotland’s own imprint of the pound or Sterling if you like). Yet, to me at least, they are unmistakably unique and quite their own.

So although I say I have visited 30 countries this may include the odd enclave, autonomous region and principality. Whatever we call them the world remains an invigorating place and I look forward to seeing many more countries, zones and the like. Now the other question, what drives us to see them all?



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