Health For Members

In which parts of Germany do people live the longest?

James Jackson
James Jackson - [email protected]
In which parts of Germany do people live the longest?
Where in Germany do people live the longest? Illustration photo by CRISTINA QUICLER / AFP

Life expectancy in Germany is dropping, but is still above EU average. In which areas of Germany do people live longest and shortest lives in and what are the differences between east and west?


When you are looking at where to live in Germany, you might want to consider where people live longer lives. Figures from the Federal Institute for Population Research show an average life expectancy of 82.9 years for women and 78.2 years for men.

This is slightly above the EU average but pales in comparison to countries like Switzerland or Spain. 

In fact, out of the 16 countries in Western Europe, Germany ranks 15th for men and 14th among women. 

Germany’s health minister Karl Lauterbach has called the negative trend in Germany “unacceptable.” He told the Welt broadsheet “we are only good at treatment, but not at all good at prevention - especially for cardiovascular diseases. They are among the most common causes of death in Germany.”

As it so often is, health is wealth.

New figures from Eurostat reveal the areas of Germany where people live longest tend to be in the prosperous south-western state of Badem-Württemburg, with women in the university town of Tübingen taking the top spot and living up to 84.7 years, and the men up to 80.2.


Image: Eurostat

Read more: Everything you need to know about making a doctor's appointment in Germany 

The former inner-German border between East and West Germany still shows up on the life expectancy maps, particularly for men. East Germany was notably poorer than the West, and many struggled with long term unemployment after the Berlin Wall came down.

The region of Germany with the lowest life expectancy for both men and women is Sachsen-Anhalt, with men living to 75.4 years and women to 82.1.


Almost all of the former east Germany has a life expectancy of between 73 and 78.

Image: Eurostat

Despite the smoke-filled bars and hard partying lifestyle, Berlin is actually an exception to this trend, with men and women there living longer than in any other eastern region of Germany (men to 78.3 and women to 83.8).

Only three regions in the former west are in the same category as the east: just over the Bavarian border in Oberfranken, Arnsberg in North Rhine Westphalia, and Saarland, which has the lowest life expectancy in the former west.


The variations in life expectancy by region are relatively minor, with just 2.6 years difference between the longest and shortest living regions for women, though that rises to 6.8 years for men.

As a comparison, the average lifespan in the EU in the most recent figures is 80.1 years, having dropped from 81.3 over the previous two years.

Switzerland and Liechtenstein have the longest life expectancy in the EU.



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