YourGermany - A Short Introduction to Germany

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News

#NEWS#

Navigation

#NAVIGATION#

Travel Links

#TRAVELLINKS#

Wikitravel
German National Tourism Board
German Railways

Travelling in Germany

#SUMMARY#

Germany is not at the top of the list when travelling in Europe. To many tourists, it is known only by passing through it to reach other destinations, or through business travel. But tourism is growing fast, especially to the major cities. As the country is one of the largest in Europe, getting to know the country in one vacation is rather difficult. But travelling in Germany is quite easy, due to its excellent highway network and public transport. The most well-known highlights of Germany are its capital, Berlin, in the northeast, the Rhine valley in the southwest, and Munich and the famous Neuschwanstein castle in Bavaria. Some destinations have somewhat lost appeal to international travellers, like the Black Forest or the North Sea islands.

There are beautiful towns in Germany, with well-kept historic town centers, but they are the minority, mostly smaller ones like Tuebingen, Noerdlingen, Freiburg, or Constance in the south, Lueneburg, Norden and Aurich in the north, Dresden and Stralsund in the east and maybe Aachen in the west. After the destructions of WW2, most larger cities were adapted to car traffic, and filled with ugly Bauhaus style buildings. Luckily, in many cities pedestrian zones were introduced, which are usually full of life and are good shopping opportunities, e.g. Schloss-Strasse in Stuttgart or Moenckebergstrasse in Hamburg.

Regions of Germany

#REGIONS#

Nature in Germany

#NATURE#

Facts

#FACTS#

Germany, formally the Federal Republic of Germany, has 81.7 million inhabitants. About 9% of these are immigrants without German citizenship. The unemployment rate has fallen to 7% in 2011, due to an export boom fueled by the weak Euro. Germany is member of the European Union and uses the Euro as currency. It is a federal republic consisting of 16 states, 3 of them city-states (Berlin, Hamburg and Bremen).

The majority (63%) of Germans are Christians, split equally between protestants and catholics. About 5% of the population are Muslims. As religion is not very important any more, there are no major conflicts in that area. Standard German is understood everywhere, but regional varieties exist and are actively used mostly in the southern states. An estimated rate of 2/3 of the population speak English, more or less well.

Information Links

#INFOLINKS#

Official Germany Portal
Federal Government
Wikipedia - Germany
Der Spiegel (english)
Federal Statistical Office of Germany

History

#HISTORY#

Germany has a long history, rooting in Roman and earlier times. During Roman times, the south and west of Germany were occupied and settled by Romans, ruling over the original Celtic population which already had started to build towns before the Romans arrived. The eastern parts of Germany were settled by various Germanic tribes. During the Migration Period around 400 AD, the Romans were defeated, and it took long to recover the loss of culture in Germany. Also in that period, the eastern parts of Germany were settled by slavic tribes. Under Charles the Great and later emperors, a decentralized German empire was created, with many local rulers. After 1100, the slavic people in the east were conquered and absorbed.