Sorry! Search is currently unavailable while the database is being updated, it will be back in 5 mins!

Across Cities and Continents

This week, let's review the vocabulary in German for political and geographical subdivisions. We will start from the largest subdivisions and proceed to the smallest.



Dann natürlich auch, um 'nen fremden Kontinent kennenzulernen,

Then of course also in order to get to know an unfamiliar continent,

weil man aufm Fahrrad eigentlich so nah dran ist wie sonst nicht, wenn man reist.

because on the bicycle you actually are so much closer to it than when you otherwise travel.

Captions 14-15, Mountainbiken - Auf dem Anden-Trail

 Play Caption


Welches Land ist ein Nachbarland von Deutschland?

Which country is a neighboring country of Germany?

Caption 27, Bundesrepublik Deutschland - Einbürgerungstest - Part 14

 Play Caption


Die Region zwischen Amrum und Sylt wurde wegen der Meeressäuger unter Schutz gestellt.

The region between Amrum and Sylt was placed under protection because of the marine mammals.

Caption 2, Abenteuer Nordsee - Unter Riesenhaien und Tintenfischen

 Play Caption


You probably already know the word die Stadt ("the city") and related words like die Hauptstadt or die Großstadt. The word der Staat is not to be confused with die Stadt. Although the United States is die Vereinigten Staaten in German, the word used for a federal state is generally das Bundesland. Der Staat is more often used when referring to something being done or provided by the federal or state government. 


Es ist sein erster Besuch in Berlin als Präsident der Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika.

It is his first visit to Berlin as the president of the United States of America.

Caption 4, Angela Merkel - Gemeinsame Pressekonferenz mit Barack Obama

 Play Caption


Der Staat muss die Gesetze einhalten.

The state has to abide by the laws.

Caption 4, Bundesrepublik Deutschland - Einbürgerungstest - Part 7

 Play Caption


In Deutschland gibt es in jedem Bundesland sogenannte Landeshauptstädte.

In Germany, there are so-called state capitals in each federal state.

Caption 15, Bundesländer und ihre Spezialitäten - Baden-Württemberg

 Play Caption


When speaking about a district of a city, or a "quarter," the German word is der Bezirk or der Stadtteil or das Viertel. The word der Kiez is used in certain cities on an informal basis to denote a particular part of a district that may even be just a few square blocks. In these places, it is much more commonly used than die Nachbarschaft


Hallo, ich stehe hier am Eingang des Viktoriaparks im Berliner Stadtteil Kreuzberg.

Hello, I am standing here at the entrance of Viktoriapark in the Berlin district of Kreuzberg.

Caption 1, Berlin - Eva im Viktoriapark

 Play Caption


Gitarrist Jürgen Ehle wohnt seit fünfundzwanzig Jahren

Guitarist Jürgen Ehle has lived for twenty-five years

in dem Kiez und schwelgt in Erinnerungen.

in the neighborhood, and luxuriates in memories.

Captions 3-4, Pankow - Rolling Stones des Ostens

 Play Caption


In German, die Kleinstadt specifies a town rather than a city. To talk about rural life, there is das Dorf ("the village") and also die Gemeinde, which can be used for a rural community as well as an urban one. 


Further Learning
Practice these words and their correct articles by describing where you live. Begin with the smallest area unit and progress until you are at continent level! Yabla German can provide more examples using these words if you get stuck on the declensions. 

You May Also Like