25 Things You Wouldn’t Believe About These Countries

Posted by on February 3, 2012

Depending upon your definition, and whether or not you count Taiwan, there are “approximately” 196 countries in the world as of this writing. So while you may consider yourself to be a knowledgeable global citizen, and we’re sure you are, given the dynamic and complex nature of our planet there are certain to be at least a couple facts on this list that you will find surprising. Here are 25 things that you wouldn’t believe about these countries.
25

Covers the most time zones – France

If you count everything, including overseas territories, then France claims the title by covering 12 time zones. The United States would be the runner-up with 11 and then Russia with 9.

24

Most likely to disappear beneath the waves – Maldives

With all the talks of global warming and rising sea levels, it is the residents of the Maldives that have the greatest reason to fear. With an average height of around 1.8 meters above sea level their nation is the lowest on Earth.

23

Most overweight population – Nauru

With over 95% of its population being overweight, the small island nation of Nauru is by far the fattest country on Earth. Its obesity epidemic is primarily attributed to the importation of western fast food that coincided with an increased standard of living in the 20th century due to the global popularity of its phosphate exports. It’s almost non sequitur…almost.

22

Roads made of coral – Guam

theworldgeography.com

Because Guam doesn’t have any natural sand, but rather coral, the island nation makes its asphalt using a mix of ground coral and oil rather than importing sand from abroad.

21

Has 350 sheep for every person – Falkand Islands (UK)

With only about 3,000 people the Falkland Islands are home to approximately half-a million-sheep. Not surprisingly wool is a major export.

20

Oldest sovereign state – Egypt

This largely depends upon your definition of a sovereign state but if you are going by first acquisition of sovereignty then Egypt would be the first country in the world to achieve sovereignty based upon the formation of the first dynasty in 3100 BC.

19

Most lakes in the world – Canada

With over 3 million lakes 9% of Canadian territory is actually fresh water and over 60% of all the lakes in the world are found within its borders.

18

Least likely place to meet your neighbor – Mongolia

theatlantic.com

At 4 people per square mile Mongolia is the least densely populated country on Earth. Compare this to the Mong Kok district of Hong Kong that has the highest population density in the world with 340,000 people per square mile.

17

Largest number of tanks – Russia

It is a strange title to hold, but Russia has by far the most tanks of any army in the world (21,000). Unfortunately for the motherland most of these outdated machines are tributes to its past, and although outnumbered (16,000), the United States has a much more advanced tank inventory.

16

The land of no rivers – Saudi Arabia

americanbedu.com

Sounds a bit strange doesn’t it? For a country as big as Saudi Arabia there has to be at least some sort of flowing water. Well, there isn’t. Most of their fresh water comes from desalinization plants or underground reservoirs.

15

Youngest population of any country – Niger

Generally the worlds youngest country is determined by calculating the portion of the population that is younger than 15. Presently it is Niger that holds this distinction with roughly half of its population having barely reached puberty (49%).

14

Most diverse country in the world – India

In almost every category – culturally, economically, climatically, racially, linguistically, ethnically, and religiously India is either the most diverse countries in the world, or the runner-up.

13

Fastest disappearing nation – Ukraine

With a natural decrease in population of .8% annually, between now and 2050 Ukraine is expected to lose around 30% of its people.

12

Most of its citizens live abroad – Malta

After some rough economic times coupled with an increased birth rate, Malta experienced significant emigration. It was so significant that there are now more Maltese living abroad than within the country itself.

11

Smaller than Central Park in New York City – Monaco

Although Vatican City is smaller (.17 sq mi) than Monaco (.8 sq mi), unlike Monaco it doesn’t have any permanent residents which leaves Monaco as the smallest permanently inhabited nation in the world…smaller than Central Park.

David Pegg

About

After helping found the United Nations, the United States, and United Airlines, David consigned himself to a transient life of writing lists and sleeping on park benches.

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  • http://ntmu.net/ jaime

    David,
    Your entry on Malta had a glaring mistake: “immigrants” should be “emigrants”.

    • http://jcgator1.wordpress.com Juan Castillo

      You are correct. Thank you for pointing that out. I will change that.

  • loledge

    lol

  • Chris T

    Hey, list25, did you hear that Mexico just surpassed the United States in holding the number one spot for most obese nation? Well, I live in the United States, and this was great news for me. I haven’t even heard of that other country which you said was most obese. I suggest you watch national news more often. BTW, I call myself your biggest fan, I love learning about the world, and its features. Your YouTube videos have some creepy, some amazing, and some strange looking photos. Keep on distributing knowledge to the world. You rock! Here, I have YouTube suggestions for you: 25 tallest structures ever built by man, 25 most popular songs worldwide, 25 most expensive houses in the world. Good Luck!

    • Happy chick

      Americans really need to get out more… Nauru is quite well known to citizens in other countries :)

  • azouqa

    The fastest disappearing nation are the CIRCASSIANS,THAT’S THE TRUTH

    The Russians invaded our country Circassia ( located next to the black sea) and killed millions of us…
    most of us live in the diaspora now….

    for more info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian%E2%80%93Circassian_War

    Sochi is the land of the genocide and it makes me sick that no nation world wide mentions that, yet they are holding the winter olympics there….

  • Chris Bedford

    “Malta experienced significant immigration. ” Oh, and they have more people living abroad than at home? how on earth do they achieve that?

    Or perhaps that should be EMigration. I can’t believe how many people just can’t tell the difference.

  • lexi

    Lol

  • Elly

    Actually Russia is the highest educated country with 54% of the population having a higher degree. Also China has a lower incarceration rate than Russia.

    • Chris Bedford

      I find it strange that Sweden doesn’t figure in the list of highly educated nations – I thought everyone went to Uni there

  • nanhah

    lol where’s north korea?

  • kumar

    I may be wrong, but i think India is the country with the most languages (depends on tour definition of a language though). Wikipedia says India speaks over 1500 languages.

  • Dumbo Maharaj

    United States not only have more tanks..it has noob people operating them..and US has in reality very less allies in real world other than few poticians because of their bad habit of attacking any country that has oil(fuel not cooking). advanced tanks is shit because if the shells cannot penetrate a old tanks armour then its more like firing
    a Pistol at a solid concrete block..

    • Dan R

      Congratulations, your comment is probably the stupidest thing I’ve ever read, Dumbo.

      The US has some of the most highly trained troops in the world, not “noobs”. Then you bitch about our foreign policy — how very original your opinion is. Thank you for clarifying about the oil, BTW; I definitely thought you were talking about vegetable oil. Finally, what in the world would make you think that the most advanced military on the planet would have state-of-the-art tanks that are unable to destroy old Soviet relics? You don’t suppose that it ever occurred to the engineers who design modern weapons systems that the weapons on their tanks might need to be able to penetrate and destroy other tanks? Are you 10 years old, or are you really just that dumb?

  • Benjamin Loh

    There are farms in Singapore – quite a couple of them, in fact.

  • ildaras

    need in add Antarctic…?

  • David Stanley

    Yes, the map of France certainly is bizarre. Algeria is shown as an integral part of metropolitan France when it has been independent since 1962. Most of the other countries marked in light blue have also been independent for decades. The remaining 24 items are very good and it’s strange that the author would spoil it by putting the misinformation about France first.

  • Ratbags

    I stopped at Number 1. How in the hell does the Republic of Vietnam equate to territory belonging to France?? The Frogs got their arses whipped in Vietnam (at Dien Bien Phu, among other places) and went home to whine into their vin ordinaire and complain to their camemberts.This was back in the 1950′s, FFS! Who wrote this list and what were they smoking at the time?