Superb nature, good food and a special outlook on life: Bavaria is something very special. Cheerfulness and self-composure mix with a healthy dose of foresight and exemplary business acumen.

Bavaria is one of the oldest states in Europe, and one of the most economically successful on top of that – the people who live here are proud. Rightly so.

A group of friends in traditional Bavarian dress toasts with beer mugs. A brass band can be seen in the background.
Bavarians love conviviality. The tradition of beer gardens, dirndl dresses and lederhosen is more than a cliché - they are part of a lively and affectionate culture. © fotolia.com/dell

Modern and traditional

Gemütlichkeit and top business performance, stubbornness and tolerance - the Bavarian way of life unites contrasts in a very unique, easygoing manner. Likewise, the people here also bring tradition and modernity together perfectly. On holidays, traditional Bavarian dress, be it lederhosen or dirndl dresses, can be seen everywhere in both villages and cities alike.

Rituals, dances and artisanry are passed from one generation to the next, and attract numerous visitors and immigrants. They all come to experience Bavarian culture up close and personal.

"Mir san mir" (Bavarian for "We are who we are")

Yes, the people in Bavaria are a bit stubborn - and it is with good reason that they are proud of that fact. But, at the same time, they are open-minded, tolerant, good-hearted and charming.

Bavarians value honesty and straightforwardness. They have an openness you can rely on: A person's word or handshake is that person's bond.

In addition to "mir san mir", Bavarians express their attitude on life with the slogan "live and let live". This means that they value their own way of life just as much as they accept the particularities of others.

Delicacies

There's no question that good food is also part of the Bavarian way of life. A warm pretzel with butter in the morning, an apple strudel in the afternoon and an evening beer brewed according to ancient traditions paired with sauerkraut and bread dumplings.

Each region has its own specialities: The Upper Bavarians have their white sausage (website in German), the Franconians have their Lebkuchen (gingerbread), fine wine and sausage cooked in vinegar, while Bavarian Swabia has its Zwetschgendatschi (plum cake), potato noodles and Spätzle (egg noodles).

A typical Bavarian meal on a tray. In the background, people are sitting on a bench in a beer garden.
A hearty and high quality meal is a part of social gathering. ©fotolia.com/Kzenon

A little more Gemütlichkeit

Many Bavarians like to take a somewhat calmer, more deliberate approach to getting things done. Perhaps that's why the people here pronounce words in a more comfortable manner: They often find the German word "ein" to be much too long. Instead of ordering a white sausage by saying "eine Weißwurst" or a lager by saying "ein Helles" - Bavarians prefer to replace both "eine" and "ein" with a simple "a", pronounced like the English “ah”.

So, it becomes "a Weißwurscht " and "a Helles". The verb "sind" is truncated to "san”, pronounced like “sahn”. From the Bavarian perspective, this simply allows things roll over the lips more easily.

A Mass - the measure of all things

A Mass is a unit of measurement, and is used to describe one litre. Thus, ordering "a Mass" will get you one litre of beer in a handled mug. Bavarians distinguish themselves from non-Bavarians in that they can hold the mug with one hand instead of using two.

Whether a genuine Bavarian or not - what counts is the conviviality, which is never lacking in a beer garden or in any of the numerous pubs.