German Travel Trivia
German cuisine is all about meat and sausages? Nope, according to Wikipedia Germany’s meat consumption per person is a mere 82kg per annum, still roughly 30 times more than in Bhutan or Bangladesh, but nothing much compared with the 125kg gobbled down in the U.S. or the 146kg eaten by the citizens of world-leading Denmark.
If you ask a German the time and are told “halb drei” (literally “half three”) the time is in fact half past two (half two in English). Germans count the minutes to the next hour rather than after.
Germany has (once) lost a penalty shootout in a major football competition. It was in 1976 when the then West Germany lost a shootout 5-3 in in the European Championships against Czechoslovakia. On the other occasions the Germans have been involved in one, they won.
The “TV station Paul Nipkov” was a station Berlin that began the first television broadcast on 22.3.1935. Although only 250 televisions existed around Berlin, this was the first regular television service in the world.
Beer is officially considered a food in Bavaria, resulting in very low taxation and good conscience. You can get a bottle of beer in a supermarket for around £0.20.
Karl Marx, the author of the Communist Manifesto, was born in the Rhineland city of Trier and was a keen member of the Trier Tavern Club drinking society (Landsmannschaft der Treveraner).
Watching the slapstick 1963 British comedy sketch “Dinner for One”, starring Freddie Frinton and May Warden, is an essential part of the German New Year’s Eve celebration.
Germans love Monty Python and there are many of them who can quote every other line from films like ‘The Life of Brian’. ‘Spitting Image’ was also a great success in the 80ies. It was (highly unusual for Germany where everything is usually dubbed) televised with sub-titles and became one of the most popular TV comedy shows.
Despite its population density, 31% of Germany’s land surface is covered by forests and woodlands.
The word snorkel comes from the German word Schnorchel, which was a tube used by German submarine crews in WWII.
Over 800 million currywurst are eaten in Germany each year – currywurst is a sausage served with a spicy sauce and curry powder, and is a street food that has become a cult classic in Germany. There’s even a museum in Berlin dedicated to the popular snack.
Germans are the fourth largest beer consumers in the world, after the Czechs, the Seychellois, and the Austrians.
There are over 300 kinds of bread, over 1,200 types of sausage, and more than 5,000 brands of beer in Germany. To put this in perspective: France is thought to have 400 distinct types of cheese.
Germany is the most populous European country (apart from Russia), with a population of 82 million.
The following cities have all at one time or another been capitals of Germany: Aachen, Regensburg, Frankfurt-am-Main, Nuremberg, Berlin, Weimar, Bonn (and East Berlin), and, since 1990, Berlin again.
“Adidas” is made from the beginning six letters of the designer’s name, Adi Dassler. It is based in Herzogenaurach, which also happens to be the home of Puma.
Munich in the very south of Germany is further North than any major U.S. city.
German is the official language of 5 countries: Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Luxembourg and Liechtenstein. It is also spoken in Northern Italy (South Tyrol) and the French provinces of Alsace and Lorraine. German remains the language with the most native speakers in Europe
The first printed book was in German.
Classical music has been widely dominated by German-speaking composers. A few famous ones born on the present territory of Germany include Bach, Händel, Beethoven, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Wagner and R. Strauss.
Berlin, now ranging at about 3.5m residents, used to boast 4.5m residents during the Third Reich. Twenty years ago it had gone down to below 3m.
German is the third most commonly taught language worldwide.
There are more than 100 German Nobel laureates.
Germans love animals. Berlin’s Zoologischer Garten is the largest zoo in the world – Germany also boasts more than 400 registered zoos. Including zoological gardens, wildlife parks, aquariums, bird parks, animal reserves, or safari parks, Germany has nearly 700 facilities.
When JFK visited Berlin, he infamously said “Ich bin ein Berliner,” which also translates to “I am a donut.”
Hugo Boss designed the official uniforms for the Nazi Party and Hitler Youth.
The world’s narrowest street is in Reutlingen. It is called Spreuerhofstrasse and is 31 cm (one foot) wide at its narrowest point.