The city of Medellin, Colombia. Picture: Planet Ware
The last group from the FIFA World Cup featured South American nation Colombia, West African giants Senegal, Poland and Japan. 

Colombia

1. Colombia came second in the “countries with the most national holidays” list with 18 national holidays. India came first with 21.

2. Colombia is the only country in South America that has a coastline on both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.

3. The traditional national sport of Colombia is called Tejo. It is a team sport that involves launching projectiles at a target.

4. World-famous pop singers Juanes and Shakira hail from Colombia.
Colombian Latin Pop singer Shakira. Picture: Billboard

Japan

1. Cherry blossoms (sakura) are Japan's national flower.
The cherry blossom. Picture: Google
2. Yaeba, or crooked teeth, are considered attractive in Japan - so much so that girls go to the dentist to have their teeth purposefully un-straightened.

3. In Japan, it is acceptable to take a nap, called inemuri, on the job—it is viewed as evidence of exhaustion from working very hard.

4. Anime, or animated Japanese films and television shows, account for 60% of the world’s animation-based entertainment. Animation is so successful in Japan that there are almost 130 voice-acting schools in the country.


Senegal

1. Senegal has two prominent nicknames; the land of Teranga and the gateway to West Africa.

2. Music is the lifeblood of the Senegalese people. In fact, indigenous musical instruments like kora and balafon, are mentioned in the very first line of Senegal’s national anthem. Singer and rapper Akon comes from Senegal.

3. In Senegal, taxis have tails. Yes, an artificial tail made of goat or sheep hair and it supposedly brings good luck.

4. Senegal is the only country in West Africa which wasn’t overrun by a military coup.

Poland

1. Frédéric François Chopin (Fryderyk Franciszek Szopen), is Poland’s most famous piano composer. 

2. Famous physicist, chemist and Nobel laureate Marie Curie (born Maria Sklodowska) was born in Poland.

3. The word “Poland” is the Anglicized version of Polska, which is ultimately derived from the word or “field.” Therefore, Poland means “land of the Poles”. 

4.  One of the most beautiful sites in Poland, the Wieliczka salt mine in Krakow is the only mining site in the world functioning continuously since the Middle Ages until the year 2008. The Wieliczka salt mine produced table salt, but is now a UNESCO heritage site and also serves as a function venue. 
The Wieliczka salt mine in Krakow, Poland. Picture: Supplied

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