The Mediterranean Sea borders Turkey, Greece and Italy. The Mediterranean Sea borders a total of 21 countries and several territories. It is almost entirely landlocked, with only narrow openings at the Strait of Gibraltar, Suez Canal and the Dardanelles.
The Mediterranean Sea has an area of 970,000 square miles and an average depth of 4,900 feet. Its deepest depth, located near the Greek coast, is 16,800 feet. The Strait of Gibraltar connects the Mediterranean Sea to the Atlantic Ocean near Spain and Morocco. The waters of the sea are mild, with average temperatures between 50 degrees Fahrenheit and 80 Fahrenheit.
Historically, the Mediterranean Sea was an important avenue for trade and development in the region. The Egyptians are believed to have begun sailing the Mediterranean Sea as early as 3000 B.C. Europeans began exploring in the 12th century, increasing trade along its route. Trade began to decline in the 14th century, but increased once more when the Suez Canal opened in 1869. As a result, the Mediterranean Sea became a strategic area for many countries.