Depending on different definitions, there are 195 or 197 countries in the world. The United Nations recognizes 195 countries, a list that includes its 193 member states plus 2 observer states; that is the Vatican City, which is one of the smallest countries in the world, and the State of Palestine.
Other definitions arrive at 197 by including Taiwan and Kosovo which are recognized as sovereign states by a section of other countries.
Now let’s cut our geography lesson and concentrate on countries that start with D; namely, Dominican Republic, Denmark, Djibouti, and Dominica. Two of these countries are in the Caribbean, while Africa and Europe have one each.
So what is unique about these countries and do they have any attractions worth visiting? Read on to find out much more about this.
What are all the Countries that Start with the Letter D?
- Dominican Republic
- Denmark – Kingdom of Denmark
- Djibouti – The Republic of Djibouti
- Dominica – Commonwealth of Dominica
1. Dominican Republic
Among the four countries that start with D, Dominican Republic is the largest in terms of area and population. It covers 18,792 sq. mi and has an estimated population of about 10,840,000 people.
This is a Caribbean nation located on Hispaniola island. As such, it shares the island with Haiti and takes the bigger portion which is two-thirds of the island. The country is triangular in shape with the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea to its north and south, respectively.
Most Dominicans speak Spanish and a local variant of the language which is influenced by African and native Caribbean languages. That said, if you are an English or French speaker, then you will be right at home; both languages are taught to all students in the country.
Santo Domingo is the capital with about a third of the country’s total population living there. The city was founded in the early 16th century by Bartholomew Colombus, brother to the famous Italian explorer Christopher Colombus.
Over 80% of the population are Christians with Spiritist and Buddhism being practiced by a small number. The country’s culture is influenced by practices borrowed from the Spanish, African, and Taino (indigenous Carrebians) people.
The culture is best experienced by joining dancers as they move to the rhythm of accordions and big drums. Here, the music is sensual and fast-paced; think of a more vibrant form of salsa.
Apart from the culture, most visitors to the Dominican Republic come for the tropical climate. The country is, however, cooler than most tropical countries. It also experiences hurricanes around the month of September.
- Dominican Republic’s flag is the only one in the world with a picture of the holy bible.
- How would you like to visit the very first cathedral in the Americas? Known as Catedral Santa María La Menor, this 16th-century building still stands in Santa Domingo.
- Kissing a woman in front of a police officer is illegal in the country.
2. Denmark – Kingdom of Denmark
I am happy to talk about my homeland! I have no idea whether this is due to the fact that Denmark is said to be one of the happiest countries in the world (me just being Danish) or if I am just excited to do my job here on the website.
Either way, Denmark is among the countries that start with D and there’s a lot to tell about it.
It is a Scandinavian country made up of the Jutland Peninsula and has more than 400 islands. Its population of about 5.7 million people inhabits around 70 of the islands, with several having less than 10 people each.
Zealand hosts the capital city, Copenhagen. There’s more. A small part of the capital extends to the island of Amager. Copenhagen is famous for its vibrant nightlife and amazing eateries.
Three-quarters of the Danes are followers of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Denmark or simply ‘The People’s Church’. Surprisingly, those who consider themselves ‘very religious’ are less than 5% of the Danish population.
If you are familiar with honesty, politeness, equality, and trustworthiness, you might feel right at home with Danish culture. You can then go ahead and enjoy rich danish folk music, folklore, folk costume, and seafood-rich cuisine passed down from generation to generation.
The numerous islands have presented an unlimited list of geographical possibilities for Denmark. I’m talking about lush green forests, pebble beaches, sandy beaches, Scandinavia’s largest seal population, and a sand dune that’s the size of a small desert (Råbjerg Mile, which keeps on moving/expanding every year).
Perhaps, one of the most spectacular phenomena that you will encounter in the country is standing on the sandbar called Grenen (The Branch) to watch the Skaggerak Sea (part of North Sea) collide with the Kattegat Sea (part of the Baltic Sea), right under your feet.
Did you know that you can never be further than 32 miles from the coastline anywhere in Denmark?
With a warm temperate climate, Denmark experiences mild summers and moderate winters, with rain and sometimes snow. That said, the coldest month reaches an average temperature of 320 F while the warmest reaches 630 F. However, changes in winds may significantly change the weather.
- Do you know how the flag of Denmark looks? Well, it is recognized as the oldest state flag still in use.
- Swimming in a harbor is considered unhealthy, right? Apparently, Copenhagen Harbor is so clean that you can swim in it.
- Despite Denmark being one of the politest nations in the world, there no specific Danish word for ‘please’.
3. Djibouti – The Republic of Djibouti
Djibouti is the eighth smallest country in Africa and just slightly bigger than Belize. It is named after its capital known as the city of Djibouti. This tiny East African nation is located in the Horn of Africa bordering Somalia, Ethiopia, and Eritrea. It also extends to the Gulf of Eden and the Red Sea.
Djiboutians has a population of about 920,000 with the Somali being the majority at 60%. The Afar people make about 35% of the population. Immigrants from the neighboring countries and Yemen (which is across the Gulf of Eden) account for the remaining 5%.
About 70% of Djuboutians live in the capital while the other big cities host less than 50,000 people each. In total, approximately 75% of the people live in urban areas; the rest practice nomadic lifestyle. Here, almost everybody is Muslim and speaks Arabic and French.
From clothes to foods, Djibouti is a country of a beautiful and proud culture. Men usually wear macawiis, a large fabric that is wrapped around the waist. The attire functions as both formal and informal and are similar to what ancient Romans wore.
Women, on the other hand, wear traditional Muslim attire including hijabs. However, the Afar women usually wear more colored garments and lots of jewelry.
The loose clothing is perfect for the country’s hot semi-arid and desert climate. Temperatures are usually high day and night, averaging between 900 F and 1060 F.
The harsh climate does not support a lot of biodiversities. That said, Day Forest National Park, the country’s park is perfect for birdwatching. It also has a huge population of rare snakes.
When not sightseeing, sunbathing and swimming are other top tourist activities in Djibouti. Beaches around the coastline are pristine, with scuba fishing and deep-sea diving also being favorite activities.
- Djibouti’s Lake Assal, a crater lake 492 feet below sea level, is the lowest point in Africa. The lake also has the world’s largest salt reserve.
- The small Christian community in Djibouti celebrate Christmas on 7th January. The two weeks delay is in line with the Ethiopian Orthodox Church practices.
4.Dominica – Commonwealth of Dominica
Dominica and the Dominican Republic are Caribbean nations that get mistaken for each other. Except for the names and being island countries, the two countries also share other similarities, but they are unique in their own ways.
Dominica is an island on its own, lying between the North Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. Its closest neighbors are the French overseas region of Guadeloupe and Martinique islands.
It has a population of about 71,200 people making it the least populated among countries that start with D. At 290 square miles, Dominica is also the smallest country on this list. Its capital city is Roseau, with a population of approximately 16,500.
Most Dominicans (and yes, people from both countries are known as Dominicans) are of African descent. Over 86% are Black Africans with the others being multiracial, Indigenous islanders, and people of European origin. The majority of Dominicans are Christians, though a small section practices Folk religion.
The country is mountainous with hot springs, freshwater lakes, and beautiful rainforests defining its scenery. It, however, has few beaches and is one of the least visited countries in the Caribbean. That said, the 213m-tall Trafalgar Falls is one of the region’s best attractions.
Dominica enjoys a tropical climate and is located in what is known as the hurricane region. In the Atlantic, the hurricane season begins in June through November, which would be a good time to avoid the country. The best time to visit is during the dry season which runs from February to April.
Dominica’s culture is a mixture of traditions from the indigenous tribes, African slaves, and European settlers. During October, for 3 days, the country holds the World Creole Music Festival, a celebration that showcases the best music and arts from the region.
- Dominica’s national dish is known as the mountain chicken– and believe me, the dish has nothing to do with poultry. It’s basically the legs of a giant frog.
- The country does not have a military force, just a police force.
Countries that start with D are only 4 and my homeland is therein. Despite only being a few, they are not limited as a category in terms of what they have to offer to the world of travelers. Beautiful tourist attractions, rich cultures, and conducive weather are just some of the countries’ appealing aspects.
Out of the four countries, only Djibouti is not an island. They all share one similarity though; lots of coastlines to share with travelers all over the world!