I’ve always had a thing for Germany, since I was very very young and spent my summers there. Whenever we left, I’d spend a good two days crying and beginning the countdown until next time. This love has only deepened with age, ending in the decision to move there this fall to attend university. And, seeing that I’m sitting in a train going back for the fourth time within the last year (something little Julia would not be able to wrap her mind around), I thought I’d share with you the best things about Germany. Enjoy!
- The language. While I know German is not considered the most beautiful language, I’ve always loved speaking it. I like the person I am while conversing (did you know that bi-lingual people are different in each language they speak?), and that fact that words such as Zeitgeist and Schadenfreude exist. Nothing like a single word to describe an English paragraph of thoughts.
- The food. Note: Currywurst, Rote Grütze (with ice cream), Döner, Brötchen (or anything out of the Bäckerei [bakery] for that matter), Kaiserschmarren, Rotkohl, Spaghetti Eis and any Schorle (fruit juice mixed with fizzy water). You have not lived until you have had these foods! I dream of them whenever I’m away. Baguette is great and all, but sometimes a girl just wants some gold old German Schwarzbrot! Post about this coming soon.
- It’s inexpensive to get around. I had originally planned to spend my vacations traveling to the South of France, but those dreams went out the window when I saw the train sky high train prices. In Germany it’s another story. You can get a round trip from one end of the country to another for only about 75 Euros. Even cheaper usually with constant promotions from the Deutsche Bahn. Go spend some time exploring Germany! There’s so much to see and it’s one of the cheapest Central European countries to travel in. My favorites include Hamburg, Köln, Freiburg, the entire Schleswig Holstein, and of course Berlin.
- The history. I’m a big fan of history, meaning Germany was always perfect for me. Although this tends to be a European thing in general, around every corner there’s a monument or artifact from a World War or the early viking days. In particular, Berlin is perfect for any history freak; the leftover pre-war has been integrated into the post-war renovations.
- The education system. This one might be getting a bit political, but a free (and internationally top rated) college education?? Please count me in! Open to people from all around the world, language skills present or not.
- The nature. My uncle owns a farm, and my biggest joy in life as a child was visiting each summer and trekking around in the mud. To date, I can’t get enough of the endless forests that pop up around the country. They’re magical, year round. Also, the lakes are stunning.
- The beer. I know food already has its own category, but beer deserves its own shoutout. There’s a reason why most beer offerings in Parisian bars come from Allemagne. My personal favorite is Flensburger, a Northern speciality (brewed in Flensburg). And, the stuff costs less than water in Germany (wish the same could be said for Paris).
- The culture. This one is a big part of me, even having grown up in the States. I just love the way Christmas is celebrated the night of the 24th, with the beautiful German decorations. I love drinking Glühwein at the Christmas markets. I love big family breakfasts, with so many types of meat and cheese. I love how upfront almost everyone is, something I always yearned for growing up in Los Angeles. And I love how the culture is a huge part of me, even having grown up so far away!
Have I managed to convince you to visit yet? I know Germany often gets buried with France, England, and whatnot being nearby, but it’s not a place you want to skip if ever in Europe.
Any of my readers from Germany, or have visited? What do you love about it?