Things To Do In Nuremberg
Nuremberg is a major city and oftentimes referred to as the “unofficial” capital of Germany. The most dominant attraction of the city is the Nuremberg Castle (Kaiserburg Nurnberg). The walls of the fortress offer a magnificent view of the Old City. The castle and the fortress can be visited and makes an interesting backdrop for creating great travel photos and videos. Another important attraction of Nuremberg is the Market Square, which was founded in the XIV century on the site of the Jewish ghetto. The hallmark of this area is a lovely fountain called the Der Schoene Brunnen, an original gold-plated 19-meter pyramid. Its construction and installation dates from the end of the XIV century. And finally, on the Market Square; there is another magnificent building - the unique and medieval Church of Our Lady (Frauenkirche). It was built by Charles IV as atonement for the burning of the Jewish Quarter. These wonderful monuments of world culture deserve much attention for present and future travelers.
When To Go:
With its clean, bloom filled towns and structures that take after the colorful illustrations in a children’s fairy tale book, you're certain to discover a lot of charm at whatever time you visit the city of Nuremberg. There are two major events that draw the most crowds of tourists who are eager to explore the city; first is the beer celebration month called Oktoberfest (millions of beer fans from all over the world attend this annual beer festival) and the joyous celebration during Christmas. When it comes to picking the perfect time to visit, it may boil down to how much is your monetary budget for your vacation (hotel accommodations and flight deals are a bit pricey during high season) and if you are prepared for the huge crowds that you will encounter during the peak season for tourism in Nuremberg.
It's chilly and dim in Germany in December and all the way up to February. The Christmas Market is one of the best reasons why tourist arrivals are at its highest because it attracts thousands of tourists from all over the world to feel the spirit of Christmas, buy souvenirs and gifts. The wooden stalls, nutcracker ornaments, gingerbread cookies, angels, Christmas lights and decorations, Christmas beliefs and customs, and the traditional food and drinks like the mulled wine heightens up the traveller’s curiosity about the city. Most of the cities in Germany have their own Christmas markets, but in Nuremberg, the observance borders more on being traditional and grand.
The summer season is unquestionably the time when the climate is at its finest. The warm but tolerable summer heat begins from May to September. Despite the humid atmosphere, there are strong chances of rain in the afternoon. If you plan to have a vacation during the summer season, hotel reservations must be booked at least two months ahead because lodging rates are higher and availability of hotel rooms are scarce during the peak season. Anticipate huge crowds in all of the major attractions and at the airport.
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In case you're not a fan of big crowds and prefer to explore Nuremberg in peace, your most logical option is to plan your vacation amid the "shoulder seasons" and this can be done from the months; March until May and from October to November. The climate may be somewhat nippy; however, you'll appreciate the lower costs in hotel reservations and fewer crowds on its well loved tourist spots.
These are the exciting attractions and fun things to do in the city of Nuremberg:
Church Of Our Lady (Frauenkirche)
The Frauenkirche or the Church of Our Lady is located near the market square where the Christmas Market Place is also situated. It is decorated with wonderful sculptures and there is an impression of elegance that is evident in its interiors. This sacred church is a real gem in Nuremberg. The church has an impressive stained glass windows and a large collection of old bas-reliefs. The beautiful altar has a neat and excellent presentation. To fully understand the cathedral’s design and meaning; inspect the outside of the church first, and then continue to check and observe inside. On the entrance portal there is a figure of a seated Virgin and the Child in her arms. It is also possible to view the image of the Star of David, which is located on the floor of the church. If you pay attention to the corner towers, you can see on the north side, the images of saints and Henry Kunigunda. On the south part are the protectors of the city - the holy Sebald and Lorenz. The western part of the altar is dedicated to the patron saint of the Frauenkirche; the Holy Roman Empire St. Michael.
The most interesting part can be seen from the outside - it's the famous clock with moving figures. Every day at noon, the door opens and the towers herald the opening and closing of the mouth, followed by a trumpet player, flutist and drummer. Next, is the exit of the seven electors, who do three laps around the figure of the emperor and then bow before it. The Emperor sceptre symbolizes the sovereignty of the monarch, greets his subjects and rounds out the action of the two figures in the eastern robes that discourage the hammers to strike for another hour. Above the clock is set a ball that shows the phase of the moon in real time. The church used to be a Jewish synagogue, which was destroyed during the riots that took place in Nuremberg when the raging epidemic of plague in 1339 hit the city. Frequent visitors agree that a visit to Nuremberg is incomplete if you have not done two important things to do here; eat a traditional Nuremberg sausage and see the presentation on the clock in the afternoon at the church square of Frauenkirche.
St. Lorenz Church (St. Lorenz Kirche)
The St. Lorenz Church (St. Lorenz Kirche) is a sacred structure that is carved in stone and rich in history. It is one of a kind and upon entrance you will be greeted with a solemn atmosphere. The stunning stained glass windows and interior decoration bring delight and admiration. The beautiful church was built in the middle of the XIII century and it is impressive from the outside because of its high towers, stone carving on the walls, exquisite sculptures, and an unusual star.
Admission is free, but personal donations can be deposited at the entrance (not compulsory). For lovers of culture and the Catholic Gothic style architecture, a visit to this church is mandatory. Inside you can see the striking upward sweeping lines and high ceilings and the furnishings that are all drowning in gray and dark colors. Externally and internally the cathedral is remarkable. Inside, there are lots of sculptures, intricate chandeliers, and a statue of the Holy Madonna. Outside, there are two towers that can be seen even from afar.
St. Sebaldus Church (St. Sebaldus Kirche)
In the center of Nuremberg stands the proud Gothic church of St. Sebald. It is a majestic building with a beautiful interior. The St. Sebaldus Church or the St. Sebaldus Kirche is a sacred cathedral that breathes antiquity, serenity, and greatness. It was rebuilt after World War II from the ruins, just like the entire city of Nuremberg. The building is wrapped with a stone lace and inside you will find the wonderful stained glass made (by some accounts) on the outline of Durer.
Framed by a bronze casting, this 5-meter-high cathedral consists of a silver reliquary where the relics of the saint and patron of the city - St. Cebalda are being venerated. Despite the fact that it is always full of people, there is an unprecedented silence. You can go around the huge church and see the schedule of concerts posted at the entrance. You can also look at all the photographs depicting the destruction of the city in April 1945 and the restoration of the church. Be sure to visit this interesting cathedral when in Nuremberg City.
Kaiserburg Nurnberg (Nuremberg Castle)
The Kaiserburg Nurnberg (Nuremberg Castle) is situated on the highest point in Nuremberg and overlooking the magnificent panorama of the city. The ancient castle captivates with its power and grandeur. The fortress is in excellent condition and it is clear that the monument is carefully tended. All stands are neatly trimmed and there are places where you can enjoy a pleasant stroll through the area. To understand its origin and history, it is best to join a guided tour. There is a viewing platform overlooking the town.
It is magnificent in its scale, significance and integrity (in the context of age). It stands as the monument of the Middle Ages, which presents the atmosphere of grandeur, chivalry, creaking floorboards, cold stone, and the moving presence of the half timbered houses. The scale buildings underwent a full restoration and recovery when the castle suffered in 1945 from the rampant bombings of the Allied forces in Germany. It is commonly referred to as the secret capital of Franconia, the storage imperial regalia, and the central place of worship (because it is surrounded by churches) in Nuremberg.
The Dokumentationszentrum Reichsparteitagsgelaende is an interesting museum for fans of German history and World War 2 facts. It has many visual paper and photo / video documents about the history of the Third Reich. The audio guided tour is available in all languages. This specialty museum is very informative and has collected in chronological order the accurate and objective information about what happened in the city during the war. The themed museum is dedicated to the history of the Nazi Party.
It has many rooms and information; however, it focuses on the creation and establishment of the party, the end of the Nazi era and stories about the Nuremberg trials. It does not have a word about the end of Hitler, but presents lots of information about how the Jewish people suffered in the concentration camps. The museum can be found in an unfinished building, but it perfectly captures the atmosphere of the tragic story of the century in Germany. The audio guide is very detailed and describes the process of the formation and collapse of the Nazi empire. There are maps, photographs, and video sequences that complement each other and give the visitor an idea of how Germans view their history. To understand everything, you need to spend at least 2 hours to visit this museum.
Reichsparteigelande (Nazi Party Rally Grounds)
Anyone who loves history must see the Reichsparteigelande (Nazi Party Rally Grounds). From here, you can take a look at the events that took place in Germany in the first half of the 20th century. A visit is obligatory so you can see with your own eyes the grandiose plans of Adolf Hitler that never came true. The place seems a bit eerie, especially when you reach the podium of Hitler and imagine the 50 thousand people in front of him listening to his speech against the Jewish people.
You can imagine what the fallen ruler thinks while standing on this famous podium. This place is usually seen in the pages of the history book, but now it looks like an abandoned and strange place. In 2013, park authorities began to clear the area, but there is still no understanding of how to use it because of its impressive dimension. For a reminder of events that took place there are now hanging information boards and guards that also serve as guides and ready to answer questions regarding the significant role of this place in history.
Der Schoene Brunnen
In the middle of the square stands the Nuremberg Hauptmarkt 19-meter triumph of the German Gothic - Der Schoene Brunnen or locally known as the Beautiful Fountain. It is one of the most striking fountains of Europe that was established in the years 1385-1396, and later restored several times. Currently, the entire square is a copy of the original fountain that is now decorated with painted limestone, created in 1903 (set in 1912, during the Second World War when the fountain in the square was surrounded by a concrete frame).
The remains of the original fountain are kept at the German National Museum. The fountain is surrounded by numerous colorful statues that represent evangelists, church founders, prophets, philosophers and allegories of the Arts. The whole area is surrounded by a quaint wrought-iron grille; among the elements of the lattice is built to look like a brass ring without seams, twist them and you will be happy or if you wish to have a baby or wishing happiness for your family (according to an urban legend).
Nuremberg Palace Of Justice (Justizpalast Nuremberg)
When making a tour of the Nuremberg Palace of Justice or the Justizpalast Nuremberg, it is better to start from the third floor. The audio guide will tell you the historical events which took place in Nuremberg and it is also necessary to know everything from beginning to end. This place is where the famous historic trial for their crimes against humanity of the Nazi war criminals were heard and processed. This building hosted an international trial of the leaders of Nazi Germany from November 1945 to October 1946.
The Museum of the History of the Nuremberg trials presents archival documents, video and audio material that can be accessed only on days when the building has no courtroom duties. It is a museum that tells not only about the brightest page in the history of mankind, but the symbolic triumph of justice that happened during the Nuremberg trials. At the entrance you will be given an audio guide and you will understand the details about the crimes of the Nazi regime as you go from one room to another.
Hauptmarkt (Market Square)
The Hauptmarkt is the main square of the beautiful Nuremberg and considered as the major market of the city. In the afternoon the whole area of the Market Square is filled with tents with all kinds of things, but it does not overshadow the beauty of the surrounding area that is filled with old buildings. The market is just one of the features of the city center where the dominant feature is the Church of Our Lady and its famous chimes with the "dancing figures".
The market is located across the "Beautiful Fountain". Everything is organized and you can meet the local farmers and artisans selling their own products. An ordinary day gives the impression of a special holiday because of its huge crowd attendance and festive atmosphere.
Albrecht Durer House
The Albrecht Durer House was built in 1420 and is the only preserved or almost intact house of the famous artist of the Renaissance At the entrance you will be given a device with headphones in your desired language. For each new room, you only need to press the button and listen to the story. The details of his life and personal life sound very simple and harmonious with the artworks presented. It succeeds in presenting the striking humility and simplicity of the great Dürer. Be sure to visit the house-museum of this renowned artist in Nuremberg.
A visit to Nuremberg combines the thrilling experience of learning so much about German history and a journey into its rich spirituality, art, and culture. The city played an important role during the reign of the Third Reich. It was grim and devastated during World War II, but now it has the incredible atmosphere of celebration and considerate effort for its existing historic structures. Aside from the lively beer festival, the city is proud of its cuisine that consists of mulled wine, macaroons, grilled sausages, and sweet pastries. The only drawback is it has a tendency to get overcrowded because of the huge number of tourist arrivals. However, Nuremberg is truly worth knowing and one of the best cities to discover when in Germany.
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