Germany at a glance

Germany at a glance: a brief summary of important facts

Everything you always wanted to know about Germany. This is a brief summary of the most important facts and figures, covering everything from system of government, size and countryside to population, lifestyle and cultural life.

Germany has been a democratic parliamentary federal republic since 1949. Following reunification in 1990 it now consists of 16 federal states. The Federal President is the head of state and the government is led by the Federal Chancellor.

Germany covers an area of 357,022 square kilometres. It is 876 kilometres from its northernmost tip to the southernmost point as the crow flies, and 640 kilometres from east to west.

The capital Berlin is also Germany's largest city, with a population of 3.4 million. Other cities with more than one million residents are Hamburg (1.8 million) and Munich (1.3 million). Cologne is just below the one-million mark. Frankfurt am Main (pop. 662,000) is a centre of international finance.

Germany has the largest population of any European country, around 82 million – a density of 230 people per square kilometre.

Today, life in Germany is subject to a great diversity of cultural influences. It can generally be described as modern and cosmopolitan. The people of Germany love nothing more than getting together and celebrating, in traditional style during carnival season, at wine festivals, at the Oktoberfest and other beer festivals, or during music festivals from classical to rock – all helped along by great food and fine wines from the 13 vineyard regions.

Germany is home to great writers and famous composers. Names like Goethe and Günther Grass or Bach and Beethoven are part of a long, distinguished cultural tradition. Its legacy is the exceptional choice of culture on offer in Germany today, from ancient to ultra-modern. There are around 300 theatres, 130 professional orchestras and 630 art museums with internationally acclaimed collections. German artists also produce a large amount of creative work in the fields of film and literature.

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