Germany is the most populous country in the European Union and has one of the biggest economies in the world. Located in the centre of the Old Continent, it is well known for being the biggest national economy in Europe and one of the largest in the world. With a fascinating and rich past of old fashion and vibrant art, castles, palaces, cathedrals and temples, landscapes, mountains and forests, tasty food and beer, Germany remains one of the world’s best travel destinations. Germany is a vibrant, thrilling, exciting place, and there is still something new to learn, even for people who have lived there for decades. Typically when one says Germany, Hitler, the Berlin Wall and beer are among the first things that come to mind. Germany is not just about that, though. There’s so much to figure out from sport and tradition to language, music, health, culture and technology. What are the fascinating things about Germany, then? Read on to find out some fun and interesting facts about Germany to help you get to know the country better.
Strange & Interesting Facts About Germany: History
- Before Berlin, there were five other German capitals, including Aachen, Regensburg, Frankfurt am Main, Nuremberg and Bonn.
- Many who dislike daylight saving time (DST) may blame the Germans for being the first to introduce it in 1916.
- While the population is decreasing, Germany has the highest population of 81 million people in the European Union.
- If you look at a satellite shot of Germany at night, you can easily see where East and West Germany used to be. That’s because most streetlights on either side were mounted before the wall came down and show as separate colours due to the chemical composition of the lamps.
- One of the cool fun facts about Germany is that almost one-third of Germany is powered by renewable energies, such as solar panels and windmills. Most Germans perceive the amount of electricity consumed by the average American to be unsustainable.
Fun Facts About Germany: Beer
Have you ever thought about how a German looks and didn’t see him holding a massive beer mug in his hand?
- After the Czech Republic, Germans are the second largest beer consumers in Europe. In 2012 alone, the Germans consumed 2.25 gallons of beer, which is currently the lowest amount since the collapse of the Berlin Wall in 1990.
- Average German intake is estimated to be about 140 litres of beer a year. Not only do Germans love to drink beer, they even love to brew it.
- Another one of the fun and interesting facts about Germany is that there are about 1300 German breweries and 5000 breweries making about 115 hectolitres of beer each year. It is predicted that if you plan to drink a new form of beer every day in Germany, it would take 15 years to try all of them.
- There is also a more than 500-hundred-year-old beer statute called the Reinheitsgebot, which specifies that only barley, hops and water be used in the fermentation of beer.
- Frederick the Great of Prussia enjoyed the beer so much that he forbade coffee in 1777. On the other hand, in 1844, King Ludwig I of Bavaria wanted to impose a levy on beer, which the citizens vigorously protested by taking to the streets. The protests only stopped after the King ordered a cut in the price of beer.
Facts About Germany: Bread And Sausages
Bread is one of the major food products in any type of food in Germany. The Germans are well known for their long tradition of baking bread, and their taste and way of cooking varies from one part of Germany to the other.
There are several various types of bread, loaves and rolls, black, white, sweet, fluffy, simple, with different seeds and tastes. Bread is also a keen ingredient of German culture, and over 300 different types are made by 17,000 bakers throughout the world.
Sausages, called Wurts in Germany, are also a very significant part of the German lifestyle, made of pork, beef and seasoned in various ways depending on the region. They are often eaten after or with a mug of beer.
Strange & Interesting Facts About Germany: Art And Education
- The Germans are great defenders of their language and identity. So much so that movies are nearly always dubbed in German using only local actors. Not only does this serve to encourage German-speaking against the dominance of Hollywood, but it has also converted dubbing into a 115 million euro business.
- Germans also made significant contributions to classical music, including Johann Sebastian Bach, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig von Beethoven.
- Popular fairy tales, such as “Hansel and Gretel,” “Snow White” and “Rapunzel,” were produced by the German brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm. The series of German fairy tales is widely known in English as Grimm’s Fairy Tales.
- One of the amazing facts about Germany is that it hosts some of the world’s biggest music festivals, including Rock am Ring, Wave-Gotik-Treffen and Wacken Open Air.
- Universities in Germany have been free of charge since 2014, including for foreign students.
- When children reach kindergarten, they receive a gift cone named Schultüte. Containing toys or candy, the cone is a sign of approaching “serious” life—and a means to relieve the tension of living in a strange place.
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Fun Facts About Germany: Culture
- When it comes to upholding the rules, the Germans are strong advocates. This is particularly true when it comes to the laws of the road. You’re going to get mean glares if you cross the streets of Germany illegally.
- The Germans may be very direct. In fact, they have no qualms about calling you out to make an offensive remark or gesture, either unknowingly or consciously.
- It is a shock that the kitchen in Germany is not a compulsory object in the house. When the Germans change houses, they take their whole kitchen with them, leaving just the pipes behind for the water link. The microwave, the refrigerator, the countertops, the cupboards, and occasionally even the sink; all shifts to a different location.
- Although it might be common for you to speak to the mailman or your neighbour, Germans are not small talk fans.
- If you don’t want to get the evil eye out of your waitress and other customers, never ask for tap water in a German restaurant.
- Like Americans, Germans enjoy their personal space. Don’t greet anyone with a hug unless you are close mates and keep at least a distance of one arm or more while you talk to another human.
- The reason and the laws matter a lot in Germany, but there are superstitions everywhere. It’s considered bad luck, for example, to wish people happy birthdays in advance. So it’s all right to express your good wishes by clapping wooden tables. But never toast someone with the water in your hand. It’s like a curse to the German people.
Facts About Germany: Palaces And Castles
Middle-Age castles and palaces designed by the European nobles are among the most famous landmarks in German architecture. It is predicted that there are about 25 thousand castles all over the world. The distinction between the castles and the palaces is that the prior was intended for defending in a war, while the second was constructed more like a home for the rich nobles of the period. If you’re in Germany, be sure to see at least a castle and a palace from close up, so that you’ve not wasted a lot of experience and understanding about Germany.
Strange & Interesting Facts About Germany: Laws
- In Germany, there is no penalty for an inmate who is attempting to escape from jail because the Germans claim that it is a fundamental human instinct to be alive.
- Germany is one of the 22 countries that have banned the declawing of cats because they find it unnecessary inhuman.
- One of the fascinating facts about Germany that you gotta keep the gas tank full! It’s illegal to run out of petrol on the highway.
- According to German law, the child’s sex must be clear from his or her first name. The civil registry office has the freedom to reject names that do not agree with the provisions.
- You might think Sunday is the best day of the week to check out any of the stuff on your to-do list-to mow the grass, clean the carpets, or place a new shelf on the wall. But set aside the hammer and the drill. In Germany, Sunday is a quiet day. Shops will be closed all over the place and neighbours will protest if the noise disturbs their relaxing day.
- In Germany, it is against the law to address an informal “du” police officer. You may want to take one or two German classes before you arrive to prevent a fine of up to €600.
Sharpen your German skills and be sure to learn more fascinating things about Germany. They are only going to encourage you to dig deeper into language and history. These fun and interesting facts about Germany can get you even more excited to visit the country or learn the language. You may even be encouraged to book the next flight!