List of the Top Microstates at Eurovision – Who is the Biggest of the Smallest?




Who says bigger is always better? One of the things that makes Europe so unique is that it’s home to some of the smallest countries on earth. They might be difficult to spot on a map, (a handful of them are even smaller than Central Park in New York City!!) but the European Microstates have definitely made a big impact on the history of Eurovision. So let’s have a look at this countdown of the contest’s Top Microstates!



“HOLD ON A MINUTE!!” I hear you all shout at your screens! No, calm down, you didn’t miss any announcements. Liechtenstein are not taking part in Eurovision. But they did try to in 1976, when the Alpine principality selected the song ‘Little Cowboy’ by Biggi Bachmann to compete for them. However without their own national broadcaster, Liechtenstein were deemed ineligible to take part and have still yet to debut at the contest.


Since 2008, Liechtenstein now has its own national broadcaster. The problem now is that 1FLTV isn’t currently a member of the EBU, nor has any plans to join in the near future due to the costs. So who knows? Hopefully one day Liechtenstein can be included on this list properly!


Sadly, I couldn’t find a recording of ‘Little Cowboy’ to include in this list. In fact, it seems so elusive that sources can’t even agree if the song was called ‘Little Cowboy’ or ‘My Little Cowboy’! Shame, as I was dying to know what the Eurovision song that never was sounds like!!


Ok, so let’s start off our list for real now…



Poor Andorra – one of only 2 countries in Eurovision’s long history to have never qualified for the Grand Final! I’ve never really understood why this is, especially as Andorra has given us some truly memorable songs over the years:- ‘Casanova’ (2008) is one of my all-time favourites and the 2007 entry ‘Salvem el Món’ by Anonymous had certain fans convinced that the principality was on-track for their first-ever win!


RTVA withdrew Andorra from Eurovision in 2010, officially because of financial reasons. But it’s probably fair to say their poor record also helped influence this decision. Because of this, as much as I’ve loved Andorran Eurovision entries, I had to put them last on this list. Please come back Andorra! We miss you! And you certainly won’t qualify if you don’t even try!


Andorra’s last foray into Eurovision was in 2009 with ‘La Teva Decisió (Get a Life)’ by Susanne Georgi. Let’s hope it isn’t their last ever entry too!



Currently Eurovision’s smallest serving nation, the Most Serene Republic of San Marino is the little microstate that could! After debuting in 2008, San Marino had to wait 7 longs years (though to be fair, they didn’t take part for 2 of those!) before qualifying for their first final in 2014 with ‘Maybe’ – oh how we all cheered that night in Copenhagen!! Was definitely my #MagicMic moment for Eurovision that year!


Because San Marino only have one final to their name, they come 4th on this list. But it’s worth noting that Valentina Monetta, the singer who finally propelled the tiny republic to the final, is the first singer to represent the same country 3 times in succession since 1966! She also goes to prove if at first you don’t succeed, you should always keep trying!


Criminally underrated, how Valentina Monetta and ‘Crisalide’ did not qualify in 2013 is something that still vexes me to this day! Grrr!! I mean… vola vola…



With two 2nd places and two 3rd places to their name, Malta ranks as the Eurovision Song Contest’s most successful country without a win to its name. Furthermore, just under half of ALL Maltese Eurovision songs have placed in the Top 10 since 1971! Amazing, especially when you consider that just over 445,000 people live there!


So why only #3 on this list? Despite their successes, Malta have yet to take home the all-important trophy. Though personally, I think it’s only a matter of time. Perhaps their recent successes in Junior Eurovision are a warm up for the first Maltese victory? Let’s hope so, Valletta is lovely in May!


Chiara sang for Malta in 1998, 2005 and 2012, though her 2005 entry ‘Angel’ currently holds the record for Malta’s highest ever scoring entry, just shy of 200 points.



Newer fans of our beloved contest might not even realise that the tiny principality of Monaco was once a Eurovision regular back in the contest’s golden days. But not only is Monaco the smallest country ever represented on the Eurovision stage, it’s also the smallest country to win the contest with Séverine’s ‘Un Banc, Un Arbre, Une Rue’ back in 1971.


Monaco is also the only country in Eurovision history to have won the contest, but to have never hosted it. Rumour has it that Télé Monte Carlo had planned to organise the 1972 edition of the contest, but didn’t have the funds (Monaco? Short of money?! Really?!?) so gave responsibility to the BBC instead. For 1 victory and never having hosted the contest, Monaco get 2nd place on this list.


Nearly all of Monaco’s Eurovision singers have been foreigners to the principality. Even Séverine was from France and claimed she’d never been to Monaco – apparently forgetting she filmed the video postcard there before the contest! Oops…


So who tops our list…?? Drumroll, please!!!



The mightiest of the mini! What Luxembourg lacks in size, it certainly makes up for in Eurovision prowess! The world’s only Grand Duchy has hosted the contest 4 times and taken home the gold no less than 5 times, making them one of Eurovision’s most successful countries – that alone deserves to get them 1st place on this list!!


The question of a Luxembourgish return to the contest is something that has come up almost every year since they withdrew in 1994. And with such iconic songs as ‘Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son’, ‘Après Toi’ and ‘Tu Te Reconnaîtras’ among their back catalogue, it’s no wonder the fans are desperate for Luxembourg to return! If they did return, do they have what it takes to take a 6th victory? Maybe even a 7th and 8th?! I think just maybe they do!


The last Luxembourgish song to grace the Eurovision stage was ‘Donne-Moi Une Chance’ by Modern Times in 1993. C’mon Luxembourg! Donne-nous une chance and come back to Europe’s favourite music competition!!


So there you have it. My list of Eurovision’s Top Microstates! For small countries, they’ve definitely had a colourful history at our beloved contest! So now what do you think? What are your favourite Microstate memories of Eurovision? Do you agree with this list? How would you rank Eurovision’s smallest competitors?


Let us know what you think!

Author : James Scanlan

Source : Eurovision Ireland

2 replies »

    • Excellent question! As Vatican Radio are a member of the EBU, technically Vatican City can enter the contest if they wish to do so. I for one would love to see them try their hand at Eurovision!

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