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Austria is a federal republic and consists of nine states. A state is called Bundesland (plural is Bundesländer). Vienna (Wien), the capital of Austria and its main political and financial centre, is a Bundesland itself. Vienna is the smallest state in terms of surface area and the biggest one in terms of population.
The states of Upper Austria (Oberösterreich) and Lower Austria (Niederösterreich) are situated in the north of the country in the relative lowlands around the river Danube (Donau) and are (together with Vienna) the centres of industrial and economic life of the whole country. Upper Austria lies in the western part, it borders on Germany in the west and on the Czech Republic in the north. Its capital is the industrial city Linz.
Lower Austria, the largest state in terms of surface area and second only to Vienna in terms of population, is located down the stream of the Danube and to the east from Upper Austria. It borders still on the Czech Republic in the north and on Slovakia in the east. Though Vienna is surrounded by Lower Austria on all sides, it is not its capital, as Vienna is a state by itself. The capital of Lower Austria is St. Pölten.
Burgenland is one of the smallest states, but it occupies the narrow stripe of land along the whole Austria-Hungarian border. It is a mainly rural region, with good wine and beautiful nature. One of its greatest tourist attractions is the Neusiedler See which Austria shares with Hungary. Economically (in terms of GDP per capita) Burgenland is the least developed region in Austria, though in the last years it has been recovering fast from being a complete periphery in the times of the Iron Curtain. The capital of Burgenland is Eisenstadt.
Continue to the other five states: Styria, Carinthia, Salzburg, Tyrol, and Vorarlberg
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