Cantabria (/kænˈtbriə/,[4] also UK: /-ˈtæb-/,[5][6] Spanish: [kanˈtaβɾja])[needs Cantabrian IPA] is an autonomous community in northern Spain with Santander as its capital city. It is called a comunidad histórica, a historic community, in its current Statute of Autonomy.[7] It's bordered on the east by the Basque autonomous community (province of Biscay), on the south by Castile and León (provinces of León, Palencia and Burgos), on the west by the Principality of Asturias, and on the north by the Cantabrian Sea (Bay of Biscay).

Cantabria (in Spanish)
Anthem: Himno a la Montaña
(in English: Anthem to the Mountain)
Location of Cantabria within Spain
Coordinates: 43°20′N 4°00′W
Formation574 (Duchy of Cantabria)
739 (Union with Asturias)
1778 (Province of Cantabria)
1833 (Province of Santander)
1982 (Autonomous Community)
Statute of Autonomy1 February 1982
  TypeDevolved government in a constitutional monarchy
  BodyGobierno de Cantabria
  PresidentMiguel Ángel Revilla (PRC)
  Total5,321 km2 (2,054 sq mi)
Area rank15th (1.05% of Spain)
  Pop. rank
1.26% of Spain
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
  Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
ISO 3166 code
Area code+34 942 a
Official languagesSpanish
Statute of Autonomy11 January 1982
ParliamentParliament of Cantabria
Congress5 deputies (out of 350)
Senate5 senators (out of 265)
HDI (2017)0.880[3]
very high · 9th
WebsiteGobierno de Cantabria

Cantabria belongs to Green Spain, the name given to the strip of land between the Bay of Biscay and the Cantabrian Mountains, so called because of its particularly lush vegetation, due to the wet and moderate oceanic climate. The climate is strongly influenced by Atlantic Ocean winds trapped by the mountains; the average annual precipitation is about 1,200 mm (47 inches).

Cantabria has archaeological sites from the Upper Paleolithic period, although the first signs of human occupation date from the Lower Paleolithic. The most significant site for cave paintings is that in the cave of Altamira, dating from about 37,000 BC[8] and declared, along with nine other Cantabrian caves, as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.

The modern Province of Cantabria was constituted on 28 July 1778 at Puente San Miguel, Reocín. The yearly Day of the Institutions holiday on 28 July celebrates this. The Organic Law of the Autonomy Statute of Cantabria, approved on 30 December 1981, gave the region its own institutions of self-government.[9]