Secrets of the world’s smallest nations


Slide 1 of 26: Forming your own country might sound like a dream to many. Some creative folks though, have made their fantasy a bizarre reality. They're not recognized by any governments in the world, but so-called micronations are spread all over the globe, some of them consisting of just a bedroom. Here are the world's tiniest unofficial nations and their secrets.
Slide 2 of 26: One of the most established and well-known micronations in the world, Freetown Christiania in the Danish capital of Copenhagen, proclaimed its independence in 1971. Around 1,000 people – some of them third-generation residents – live in the autonomous neighborhood, which has been a source of controversy since its creation.
Slide 3 of 26: A group of hippies initially squatted on the former military base in the borough of Christianshaven and declared the site of the barracks a "free zone". Cannabis, which remains illegal in Denmark, has been sold openly in the aptly named Pusher Street of Christiania (officially called the Green Light District) ever since but tolerated by the authorities.
Slide 4 of 26: Murals all over the buildings show the community's open approach to drugs, while those living there are happy to show Christiania off to anyone who visits. The small community now has a visitor center with information about the "nation's" history, see its former currency and stamps, and its three-dot flag. It's said this quirky quarter of Copenhagen is the second most popular tourist attraction in the Danish capital, after the Tivoli Gardens.

Slide 5 of 26: Visitors are welcome but should respect three rules written on a sign at the entrance to the Green Light District: "Have fun", "Don't run" (as this is said to cause panic) and "No photos" of people selling or consuming marijuana.
Slide 6 of 26: First settled in 1895, the small town of Whangamomona is (controversially) located in the rural Manawatu-Wanganui Region on New Zealand's North Island. However, after the regional council redrew boundaries in 1989, the frustrated residents declared themselves a republic as an act of protest rejecting involvement in the region. They even held their own presidential elections.
Slide 7 of 26: Though its creation began as a protest, Whangamomona now sees itself more as a tongue-in-cheek republic. Its former presidents included a goat and a poodle. Its biennially celebrated Republic Day is usually attended by thousands.
Slide 8 of 26: Passports and passport stamps are issued to ensure safe travel through Whangamomona. The quirky town can be reached by following the Forgotten World State Highway, 45 minutes east of Stratford. Discover secrets of the world's passport stamps.
Slide 9 of 26: Located in Prater park in Austria's capital of Vienna, this ball-shaped house was proclaimed a republic in 1982 after a dispute between artist Edwin Lipburger and the authorities over its building permit. When Lipburger first built it 11 years earlier without permission in Lower Austria, he was arrested and sent to jail for 10 weeks.

Slide 10 of 26: Kugelmugel houses regularly changing art exhibitions, which have continued after the death of its founder in 2015. To continue his father's legacy, Lipburger's son Nikolaus keeps the sphere open to the public.
Slide 11 of 26: The eye-catching house has the only address within the Republic of Kugelmugel: Antifaschismus-Platz 2 (2 Anti-Fascism Square). It's since been officially recognized by the city of Vienna. Take a look at these time warp hotel rooms from a bygone era.
Slide 12 of 26: Who would have thought that a suburb in south London houses a tiny nation that claims to be independent from the rest of the UK? Formed in 2008 by a father and his son (the Austens), the "capital" of the Empire of Austenasia is located in Carshalton and ruled by Emperor Jonathan I. He doesn't stand alone in his fight to maintain independence, as 23 other properties in the UK and around the world claim to be part of the student's family-home micronation, pictured here.
Slide 13 of 26: Its territory is spread across the UK, along with a university campus in Australia, a holiday home in the Hebrides and houses in the US, Montenegro, India and Algeria. Austenasia proudly states it's a nation of 85 citizens and Emperor Jonathan I (pictured in the center with two tourists in his house) is usually happy to welcome curious visitors to his capital "Wrythe" – subject to prior arrangement. You can even buy Austenasian coins and postcards as souvenirs.
Slide 14 of 26: You won't find any humans in the territory of the Grand Duchy of Flandrensis. This micronation consists of five islands off the coast of western Antarctica and claims to be the only country in the world that doesn't want any people on its grounds. However, that doesn't mean you can't become a Flandrensian citizen.

Slide 15 of 26: Flandrensis is a community of 643 citizens of 70 different nationalities trying to protect Antarctica. By founding his own micronation near the South Pole back in 2008, Belgian activist Niels Vermeersch wanted to raise awareness of melting polar ice.
Slide 16 of 26: The self-declared head of state, the Grand Duke Niels van Flandrensis (pictured left with Kevin Baugh of the Republic of Molossia at a micronation conference in London), keeps himself busy with involvement in environmental affairs and promoting micronationalism. If you are interested in joining Flandrensis, you can complete an online application form.
Slide 17 of 26: The Old Town of Lithuania's capital Vilnius hides a secret. About 0.3 square miles (1sq km) of it belongs to the self-declared Republic of Užupis. It's one of the smallest republics in the world, with its own president, constitution, currency and even a navy consisting of a few small boats. Every year on 1 April it's Užupis Day, when residents celebrate their independence. Check out these stunning images of Europe's adorable small towns and villages.
Slide 18 of 26: Užupis is a beautiful place with pastel-hued houses hinting at its Soviet past, cobbled streets and lots of artistic flair. In fact, it was founded by a group of local artists in 1997 and the republic's current president is a poet, musician and film director. Whether Užupis' self-proclaimed independence is to be taken seriously or not, no one quite knows.
Slide 19 of 26: The symbol of Užupis is the "Holy Hand": a blue hand with a hole in the middle, symbolizing an inability to accept bribes and there's nothing to hide. The micronation's creative community usually regularly hosts fashion festivals, concerts, exhibitions and poetry events.
Slide 20 of 26: In 1979, 14-year old Milwaukee resident Robert Ben Madison (pictured) declared his second-floor bedroom in his house to be a sovereign state and announced it to be the Kingdom of Talossa. He invented a flag, currency, legislation, and most astonishingly its own language, Talossan, including a lexicon of more than 35,000 words. However, even though Madison's micronation still exists today, he is no longer part of it.
Slide 21 of 26: After gaining a lot of publicity in the 1990s, Talossa's kingdom, formerly consisting of only a few citizens living in Milwaukee (pictured), developed to a large internet community, finally leading to Madison's abdication in 2005. It is now ruled by King John and is mainly an online community, which you can join by writing a letter to the Talossan Interior Minister.
Slide 22 of 26: It might sound somewhat megalomaniacal, but this micronation created by Illinois resident James T. Mangan comprises the entirety of outer space. The eccentric author declared the so-called Nation of Celestial Space in 1949 to the United States, Soviet Union, United Kingdom and United Nations on behalf of humanity, so no country could ever establish a political hegemony in the universe.
Slide 23 of 26: Mangan was engaged in promoting Celestia for many years, claiming almost 20,000 members in 1959 and even applied for membership of the United Nations. However, his micronation is thought to have eclipsed with the founder's death in 1970, despite still operating online. Aside from space itself, all that remains of his nation are some rare coins, the Celestons (pictured), and passports issued in Celestia's name from the 1950s and 1960s.
Slide 24 of 26: Not all micronations are drug-fueled communities or strangely-shaped buildings. A stunningly beautiful island off the northeast coast of Sardinia houses the tiniest self-proclaimed kingdom in the world. Tavolara claimed independence from what is now Italy, in the early 1800s and 200 years later, still has a king on its throne. Check out these underwater cities we've only just discovered.
Slide 25 of 26: The kingdom has been reigned by the Bertoleoni family (pictured) since the beginning. The members were once the only inhabitants of Tavolara island which had been abandoned in the 1730s because of piracy. The tomb of its founder Paolo I can still be seen in the graveyard on the island. Look at these incredible photos of abandoned islands the world forgot
Slide 26 of 26: Having ruled over Tavolara for 25 years, king and former fisherman Antonio "Tonino" Bertoleoni usually welcomes visitors with open arms and serves the country's best cuisine in its only restaurant, Da Tonino – Re di Tavolara (pictured). The island is a popular diving destination, situated just off Sardinia's Costa Smeralda, and has natural wonders such as a cove and beautiful beaches. Now check out the world's stunning abandoned castles

Fascinating micronations around the world

Forming your own country might sound like a dream to many. Some creative folks though, have made their fantasy a bizarre reality. They’re not recognized by any governments in the world, but so-called micronations are spread all over the globe, some of them consisting of just a bedroom. Here are the world’s tiniest unofficial nations and their secrets.

Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen, Denmark

Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen, Denmark

A group of hippies initially squatted on the former military base in the borough of Christianshaven and declared the site of the barracks a “free zone”. Cannabis, which remains illegal in Denmark, has been sold openly in the aptly named Pusher Street of Christiania (officially called the Green Light District) ever since but tolerated by the authorities.

Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen, Denmark

Murals all over the buildings show the community’s open approach to drugs, while those living there are happy to show Christiania off to anyone who visits. The small community now has a visitor center with information about the “nation’s” history, see its former currency and stamps, and its three-dot flag. It’s said this quirky quarter of Copenhagen is the second most popular tourist attraction in the Danish capital, after the Tivoli Gardens.

Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen, Denmark

Visitors are welcome but should respect three rules written on a sign at the entrance to the Green Light District: “Have fun”, “Don’t run” (as this is said to cause panic) and “No photos” of people selling or consuming marijuana.

Republic of Whangamomona, North Island, New Zealand

Republic of Whangamomona, North Island, New Zealand

Though its creation began as a protest, Whangamomona now sees itself more as a tongue-in-cheek republic. Its former presidents included a goat and a poodle. Its biennially celebrated Republic Day is usually attended by thousands.

Republic of Whangamomona, North Island, New Zealand

Passports and passport stamps are issued to ensure safe travel through Whangamomona. The quirky town can be reached by following the Forgotten World State Highway, 45 minutes east of Stratford. Discover secrets of the world’s passport stamps.

Republic of Kugelmugel, Vienna, Austria

Republic of Kugelmugel, Vienna, Austria

Republic of Kugelmugel, Vienna, Austria

The eye-catching house has the only address within the Republic of Kugelmugel: Antifaschismus-Platz 2 (2 Anti-Fascism Square). It’s since been officially recognized by the city of Vienna. Take a look at these time warp hotel rooms from a bygone era.

Empire of Austenasia, UK

Empire of Austenasia, UK

Its territory is spread across the UK, along with a university campus in Australia, a holiday home in the Hebrides and houses in the US, Montenegro, India and Algeria. Austenasia proudly states it’s a nation of 85 citizens and Emperor Jonathan I (pictured in the center with two tourists in his house) is usually happy to welcome curious visitors to his capital “Wrythe” – subject to prior arrangement. You can even buy Austenasian coins and postcards as souvenirs.

Grand Duchy of Flandrensis, Antarctica

Grand Duchy of Flandrensis, Antarctica

Grand Duchy of Flandrensis, Antarctica

The self-declared head of state, the Grand Duke Niels van Flandrensis (pictured left with Kevin Baugh of the Republic of Molossia at a micronation conference in London), keeps himself busy with involvement in environmental affairs and promoting micronationalism. If you are interested in joining Flandrensis, you can complete an online application form.

Republic of Užupis, Vilnius, Lithuania

The Old Town of Lithuania’s capital Vilnius hides a secret. About 0.3 square miles (1sq km) of it belongs to the self-declared Republic of Užupis. It’s one of the smallest republics in the world, with its own president, constitution, currency and even a navy consisting of a few small boats. Every year on 1 April it’s Užupis Day, when residents celebrate their independence. Check out these stunning images of Europe’s adorable small towns and villages.

Republic of Užupis, Vilnius, Lithuania

Republic of Užupis, Vilnius, Lithuania

Kingdom of Talossa, Milwaukee, USA

Kingdom of Talossa, Milwaukee, USA

After gaining a lot of publicity in the 1990s, Talossa’s kingdom, formerly consisting of only a few citizens living in Milwaukee (pictured), developed to a large internet community, finally leading to Madison’s abdication in 2005. It is now ruled by King John and is mainly an online community, which you can join by writing a letter to the Talossan Interior Minister.

Nation of Celestial Space, Space

Nation of Celestial Space, Space

Mangan was engaged in promoting Celestia for many years, claiming almost 20,000 members in 1959 and even applied for membership of the United Nations. However, his micronation is thought to have eclipsed with the founder’s death in 1970, despite still operating online. Aside from space itself, all that remains of his nation are some rare coins, the Celestons (pictured), and passports issued in Celestia’s name from the 1950s and 1960s.

Kingdom of Tavolara, Sardinia, Italy

Not all micronations are drug-fueled communities or strangely-shaped buildings. A stunningly beautiful island off the northeast coast of Sardinia houses the tiniest self-proclaimed kingdom in the world. Tavolara claimed independence from what is now Italy, in the early 1800s and 200 years later, still has a king on its throne. Check out these underwater cities we’ve only just discovered.

Kingdom of Tavolara, Sardinia, Italy

The kingdom has been reigned by the Bertoleoni family (pictured) since the beginning. The members were once the only inhabitants of Tavolara island which had been abandoned in the 1730s because of piracy. The tomb of its founder Paolo I can still be seen in the graveyard on the island.

Look at these incredible photos of abandoned islands the world forgot

Kingdom of Tavolara, Sardinia, Italy

Having ruled over Tavolara for 25 years, king and former fisherman Antonio “Tonino” Bertoleoni usually welcomes visitors with open arms and serves the country’s best cuisine in its only restaurant, Da Tonino – Re di Tavolara (pictured). The island is a popular diving destination, situated just off Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda, and has natural wonders such as a cove and beautiful beaches.

Now check out the world’s stunning abandoned castles

Source: Read Full Article