One of the main reasons we travel is to experience the way people live in other countries. Their lives are often similar to ours with everyday chores, work, family, and eating out, but there are still plenty of differences that no one writes about in guide books and travel articles. Sometimes the country you visit seems like it’s on a different planet altogether! Here are 12 facts about life in other countries that seem too weird to be true.
In Kenya local buses are painted in all kinds of crazy colours and graffiti. You will often hear loud music playing from the speakers to make the drive more entertaining. The driver always tries to go as fast as possible despite the traffic, so prepare yourself for a fun and bumpy ride!
Croatia is a country where people drink coffee for hours. This is true! If you sit with one cup of coffee for 2-3 hours no one would bother you or ask you to leave. It’s a totally normal thing and people actually enjoy it very much.
In Israel kids are very independent. You can see a 5-year-old walking around on his own, getting into a bus and going to school. Sometimes these kids even look after their small brothers and sisters. They feel absolutely safe!
Electricity blackouts happen quite often in Nigeria, but locals don’t seem to mind. People don’t make a big deal out of it and just continue whatever they were doing, unlike other countries where a blackout can be a real tragedy. Still, when electricity is on people jump and dance in the streets like it’s the best thing ever.
You can often see roadside barbershops and dentist parlours. While barbers can actually be good, giving you a trim or a shave for a very low price, dentists seem a bit shady. This system exists due to the huge amount of poor people, who can’t afford going to proper establishments.
People believe in all kinds of supernatural things in Turkey. You will find amulets from evil eye hanging everywhere. It doesn’t really matter if they work or not, people will still put them – on doors, trees, inside their cars and houses. They are literally everywhere!
Everyone is very religious in Greece. If your girlfriend or boyfriend doesn’t attend church, then you’re in big trouble. A person that doesn’t go to church will simply not exist for your family! So if you’re asked whether your partner goes to church, better say ‘yes’.
In Netherlands there are more bicycles than people! There are approximately 22 million bicycles in the country and only 17 million people who own them. If you’re wondering how that is possible, it’s quite simple – people own a lot of bicycles. One can be for city rides, another for mountains, and yet one more for speed racing.
French people always kiss each other on the cheeks when they meet. Even if they’re total strangers! If that’s not weird enough, imagine what happens when a big group of 15 people gets together. It’s a real cheek kissing marathon!
If you hit 25 and you are still single, be prepared to get showered with cinnamon! Yes, this is as weird as it sounds. It gets worse with age. In 5 years, if you’re still a bachelor, you will be sprinkled with black pepper! And that is definitely not something you want to experience, ever.
Iranians are very hospitable. If you happen to look like a tourist, people will pay special attention to you. But not in a bad way! You will be invited to their home for dinner and a friendly chat. They are happy to receive a guest from another country and share their food with him.
People in Iceland are incredibly polite and will always say ‘good morning’ and ‘good evening’ to everyone they meet in the street. Cities and towns are very safe, so much so that babies in carriages are often left outside the shops, while Moms are doing groceries or shop for clothes! Icelanders can also talk about different kinds of snow for hours, but that’s not too surprising, considering it is Iceland we are talking about.