About The Tiny Nation Of Liechtenstein

About The Tiny Nation Of Liechtenstein

About The Tiny Nation Of Liechtenstein

-By Disha Suresh

People know little about this tiny hamlet nestled in the Alps of Europe. It is not unbelievable as it is the least visited country on the continent. It is only 25 kilometers long and 12 kilometers wide and is landlocked by the breathtaking nations of Switzerland and Austria. The nation is quite absurd. Its currency is the Swiss Franc, its monarchy is from Austrian descent and its official language is German. It is the world’s largest exporter of false teeth and was the last country in Europe to grant women with voting rights, as late as 1986. The principality has no airport or railway station but has a railway line running through it. It is a tax haven, with more companies registered than the number of people. It also holds an exquisite collection of contemporary art in its Kunst museum, situated in the sleepy capital city of Vaduz. The country though has also had an interesting past.

Liechtenstein was a part of the Holy Roman Empire for centuries. It was purchased by the Princes of house Liechtenstein and was christened after them. Later, in the 1800s, it was a part of the German Federation until it became independent in 1866. In the same year, during the Austro-Prussian War, 80 soldiers from the area were sent to the Tyrolese region, and 81 returned. Surprisingly, the men had befriended an Italian and had brought him back to the nation. This was the last military engagement that the country had, after which it has had no official military. Since then it has always been a quiet, pristine and lazy country which was up to nothing. Their neutrality was at such a peak that in 2007, they were unaware that their neighbor, Switzerland had accidentally invaded them when 170 Swiss soldiers walked into their borders. 
The monarchs of Liechtenstein, on its national holiday, invite its entire citizen for beer in the garden of the Vaduz Castle, the ancestral seat of the Princes. The nation has just as much natural beauty and adventure to offer as its tourist-thronged neighbors but is fortunately left out of overcrowding and overpopulation.