GET TO KNOW GERMANY
Where exactly is Germany? What is everyday life like for German families? Which holidays are celebrated? And what is special about the German language? Here, you can find out more about German family life, traditions, and the geography of the country.
Order, punctuality, diligence and steadiness – these are the virtues that Germany is known for. Buses and trains run like clockwork, streets are divided with clear lines for bicycles, cars and pedestrians, and at the office, there’s a different form to go along with each and every procedure. Maybe that sounds boring and conservative, but it makes communal life considerably easier. Furthermore, Germans are social and considerate people, open to the world, and have a good amount of humour.
The main language in Germany is High German. But did you know that the German language has around 20 dialects and so many subdialects that it would be impossible to count them all? From the capital Berlin and the flat north to the Alps – a different sound resonates in every region. And that starts with the greeting: in Bavaria, you’ll encounter ‘grüß Gott’ – literally ‘(may) God greet (you)’ – whereas in Oldenburger Land, a simple ‘moin’ (hey) suffices. The languages are so different that Northern and Southern Germans can hardly understand one another when they are speaking in their dialect.
Christianity, Islam and Judaism – various religions also play a part in Germany’s diversity. Accounting for almost 60 percent of the population, Christianity is the largest faith community in Germany. In the west and the east, Catholicism is prevalent, whereas Evangelicalism is dominant in the north. Protestants and Catholics are thus the two largest religious groups, followed by Muslims, Orthodox Christians, and Buddhists. Around 30 percent of Germans, principally in the east, belong to no religious group.