The word Austria is derived from the German word Österreich, which means ‘eastern relm’. It was recorded for the first time in the 12th century. Located in central Europe, Austria is a landlocked country. The region is situated within the most extensive mountain range of Europe known as the Alps. That is why territory of Austria is extremely mountainous and just about 32 percent of Austria is below 1,640 feet (500 metres). Vienna is the largest as well as the capital city of Austria. It is one of the world’s richest countries and most of the Austrians have therefore, a high standard of living. Let’s explore more in Austria facts for kids!
A Quick Guide to Austria Facts for Kids
Largest city: Vienna
Official Language: German
Famous Sport: Alpine Skiing
Highest point: 3,798 metres (12,461 ft).
Austria Facts and History
- Before Romans turn up in Austria, it was occupied by the tribes of Celtic people.
- Following the decline of the Holy Roman Empire, the region was occupied by Avars, Bavarians and Slavs.
- Charles the Great was the first ruler to introduce Christianity in Austria when he invaded the country in 788 A.D.
- In 1804, the Austrian Empire was founded from the Habsburg Monarchy in Central Europe and lasted till 1867. It was really one of the great powers of Europe.
- In the 19th century, Austria was involved in a war with France (in what is known as the French Revolution) but it was defeated by Napoleon. Thus, it was the end of the Roman Empire in 1806. However, in 1814 Austria along with other allied forces successfully defeated the French and thus put a stop to Napoleonic Wars.
- Austria along with Prussia had waged a war against Denmark and ultimately gained freedom from it in 1864.
- Austria left German confederation as a result of Battle of Königgrätz which was fought with Prussia. In this battle, Austria was defeated.
- After World War II, Austria was divided between countries that were victors in WWII. The countries that divided Austria into different zones were United Kingdom, United States, France and Soviet Union. They ruled Austria collectively by the name of Allied Commission for Austria.
Fascinating Austria Facts for Kids | Austria Facts and Figures
- Austria ranks 12th among the richest countries of the world as per GDP per capita.
- As for revenue from international tourists, Austria stood at the 9th position in 2007 among the countries of the world that receive maximum receipts from the tourism industry.
- Austria stood at the 12th position in terms of number of tourists from all over the world arriving in the country.
- In the Human Development Index of 2014, Austria stood at 21st position in the world.
- Historically, most of the country’s imports and exports were carried out with Germany. But following the membership of European Union, other European countries contribute more than 67 percent to the imports of Austria.
- Tourism plays a vital part in the country’s economy. It contributes about 9 percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Austria.
- About half of the country’s electricity is generated through water power.
- About quarter of the population of Austria lives in its capital city, Vienna.
- About 15 percent of the population is estimated to be born overseas.
- The biggest single ethnic groups of immigrants that are living in Austria are Kurds and Turks.
- The males who reach 18 years of age are required to do 6-month military training in Austria compulsorily.
- The Christians living in Austria have to pay about one percent of their income to the church. This payment is called Kirchenbeitrag, which means ‘Church contribution’.
- As per the European Commission survey (2012), about 86 percent of the residents are Christians. Out of these, 77 percent people are Roman Catholic.
- 20 percent of Austrians do not follow any religion.
- During Holocaust, 65,000 Jews in Austria were assassinated.
- Niki Lauda is a former champion of Formula One racing car. He is an Austrian and won the race three times in 1975, 1977 and 1984. He is also considered to be the only driver to become champion on both Mclaren and Ferrari.