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Alcohol is a cultural thing. Some countries adore it, while others abhor it. A country's love of alcohol tends to run along a spectrum. Dry countries like Saudi Arabia exist, but so do countries that are notorious for their heavy drinking like Russia.
There are a lot of reasons why you might want to know which countries are the biggest consumers of alcohol. If you're a barfly who wants to take a tour of a country's drinking scene, it's a good idea to go where the best tours are. You also might just be one of the many drinkers who's curious about what the most alcoholic countries are.
Either way, here are the countries that beat out the rest when it comes to alcohol consumption. Some of them might just surprise you.
Slovakia is a small, Eastern European country that's known for beautiful sights, visually stunning churches, and for having a pretty strong love of alcohol.
As one of the most alcoholic countries in the world, the average Slovakian will drink 12.5 liters of alcohol every year. This is made all the more impressive when you realize that they tend to drink mostly liquor.
A popular drink of choice is slivovica, a liquor that is made out of plums and carries a whopping 52 percent ABV rating. Other drinks of choice include wine and Tatratea, a liquor-infused wine made in the Tatra mountains.
It's no secret that Latin countries like to party, but so do their European counterparts. Portugal actually ties Solvakia when it comes to their average liquor consumption at 12.5 liters per person, per year.
Between the lovely seafood, amazing party scene, and friendly locals, you already have plenty of reason to visit Portugal. It's a very hot tourist location that offers travelers a ton of things to do.
If you want to drink like the locals, it's best to stick to wine, sangria, madeira, Licor Beirão, or ginja, a wine made from berries soaked in brandy.
Oh, Straya. We knew that you would be on this list! With an average per capita consumption of 12.6 liters, Australia beats both Portugal and Slovaki when it comes to the sheer amount of liquor that they drink.
Visiting Australia's bar scene is a great way to get a taste of the local culture and enjoy really phenomenal food. But, why stick to bars? This country has wildlife that's found nowhere else in the world, and some of the world's most surf-able beaches.
It's no secret that Australia is a huge beer drinking country, but this is also a wine country trip you need to add to your bucket list.
Admittedly, Serbia has not been doing too good with tourism, and there's still quite a bit of political upheaval that might make it difficult for tourists to enjoy. This is tragic, considering how wonderful a culture they have.
Serbia's drink of choice is rakia, a strong berry liquor that is clear as vodka. They also love their beer, wine, and vodka there, too. Currently, they lead the world in the annual consumption of rakia, as well as the creation of it.
At 12.9 liters of alcohol per capita, it's safe to say they love their drink in Serbia. Personally, I love Serbian cuisine. If you do decide to go, try some sarma (stuffed grape leaves) with a side of Turkish coffee. You will fall in love.
Romania is yet another Eastern European country that can claim the title of one of the most alcoholic countries in existence. This country, known for their capital city of Bucharest, their gymnasts, and being the home country of Count Dracula, absolutely loves their booze.
There is currently an ongoing problem with binge drinking, alcoholism and drunk driving in Romania. The World Health Organization places their drinking per capita stats anywhere from 12.9 liters per year to upwards of 13.7 liters per year.
Their drink of choice is vișinată, a liquor made from sour cherries. They also enjoy rakia, wine, and palinka, which is a fruit-based brandy. Pretty much, any booze goes here.
That being said, the food is incredible here, and these guys know how to party. Expect mouthwatering stuffed grape leaves, sautéed chicken livers, mushroom pies, and chocolates.
The Czech Republic is very similar to Romania when it comes to drinking habits, touting a very hardcore 14.1 liters of alcohol per capita. With a legal drinking age of only 16, this country takes booze as a rite of passage into high school.
If you want to drink like you're in the Czech Republic, it's a good idea to stick to hard liquors like rakia, brandies, Becherovka bitters, and vodka for variety purposes. If not, wine is popular here too, as is beer.
Going here means that you'll get to enjoy awesome tours through ancient breweries, the wonderful food, and awesome art galleries. The natural beauty of Czech forests is not to be missed, either.
It's not surprising that the land that's famous for its history of vodka is one of the most alcoholic countries in the world. A typical Russian will drink a whopping 14.5 liters of alcohol every year—and that's not the highest consumption rate on Earth, either.
Like other high consumption countries, alcoholism and drunk driving are serious public health concerns here. However, we would probably drink more too if we had that kind of bar scene.
Many famous Russian foods, including caviar, were first offered up to whet drinkers' appetite for more drinks. The food here, especially when you think of pelmeni (dumplings), cheese blinis (pancakes), and beef Stroganoff, is worth the trip.
Yes, it's possible to drink more than a Russian—just ask your average Lithuanian. As one of the tiniest countries in the world, Lithuania has the dubious honor of being one of the few places were people drink more than Russians do.
A typical Lithuanian will drink around 16.2 liters in a single year. Though rates of alcohol dependency are fairly high, it's still a fun country to go to. Like many other Eastern European countries, drinks of choice include palinka, vodka, brandies, and wine.
Of course, you don't have to be drinking alcohol to enjoy this place. Their food, landmarks, and parties are wonderful for all types of people.
Belarus is nestled into one of the most heavy-drinking regions on Earth, so is it really surprising that it's one of the most alcoholic countries in the world? Not really, no.
At a jaw-dropping 17.1 liters of alcohol per year, it's hard to imagine what a party in Belarus must be like. Men drink way more on average, with a typical male drinking as much as 27.5 liters in a single year.
Belarusians love vodka, nalivkas (vodkas flavored with herbs and honey), and wine. That being said, just about any kind of liquor will be well received by a Belarusian.
Drinking is definitely problematic here. Due to high rates of alcohol dependency and depression, Belarus has one of the highest suicide rates in the world as well.
Though Belarus is one of the most alcoholic countries in the world, it is not the most alcohol-guzzling place in the world. You'll have to look pretty closely in a hitchhiker's guide to Eastern Europe to find this fun fact out, but that honor goes to the country of Moldova, which is right next to Romania.
With a staggering average consumption rate 17.4 liters of alcohol per person, a typical Moldovan will outdrink just about any other average person in any country.
The moral of the story? Don't try to enter a drinking contest with a Moldovan. You'll lose.