Faroe Islands (Faroese: Føroyar; Danish: Færøerne) is an island country consisting of an archipelago of small islands between the Norwegian Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, approximately halfway between Norway and Iceland, 320 kilometres north-northwest of Great Britain. The area is approximately 1,400 square kilometres with a 2015 population of 48,700. The islands are an autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark.
The archipelago is very rugged and has an extremely moderated subpolar oceanic climate that is windy, wet, cloudy and cool year round. In spite of its northerly latitude, temperatures average above freezing year round.
Between 1035 and 1814, the Faroe Islands were part of the Kingdom of Norway. The 1814 Treaty of Kiel granted Denmark control over the islands, along with two other Norwegian regions: Greenland and Iceland. The Faroe Islands have been a self-governing country within the Danish Realm since 1948. The Faroese have control of most domestic matters; areas that remain the responsibility of Denmark include military defence, police, justice, currency and foreign affairs. The Faroe Islands have representation in the Nordic Council as members of the Danish delegation. The Faroe Islands also compete as an independent country in certain sports.