Ahh, Bavaria. The southern region of Germany is very visually and culturally different than what you’ll find in Berlin. Bratwursts, old beer halls and streets lined with half-timbered houses abound. The region’s charm is unmatched — and Nuremberg is the perfect place to get a taste of it. Read on for Dame Traveler Contributor Meredith of The Glass Passage’s tips for the perfect long weekend in the city!
Market Square by night — home of the world famous Christmas Market every December!
WHERE TO STAY?
Located just inside the walls of the old city and a stone’s throw from the main train station, you’ll find historic Hotel Victoria. The boutique hotel has been privately owned since its opening in 1896 — so you could say they know a thing or two about how to create a lovely and inviting environment that keeps guests coming back time and again!
The rooms are comfortable and modern, yet the building itself is under monumental protection from the city, so it’s a wonderful blend of old and new. My favorite part, however, was every morning at the amazing breakfast buffet. It was definitely an ideal start for a long day of exploring!
WHERE TO EAT?
No visit to Nuremberg is complete without trying some traditional Franconian (which is the exact region where the city sits within Bavaria) food. Nuremberg is famous for it’s Bratwurst and let me tell you, it did not disappoint! The best place to try it (along with the BEST potato salad and sauerkraut I’ve ever had) is at Bratwursthäusle, which has been making its sausages in their in-house butcher’s shop in the back of the restaurant for ages. The restaurant sits right in front of St. Sebauldus church, just off the Main Market square and is so charming and authentically Franconian in its decor.
Bratwursthäusle & St. Sebauldus Church
We shared a table with a lovely German couple visiting their great uncle, who told us stories (in German, which the couple graciously translated to English) of his experiences before and during the war, all in between swigs of local beer and schnapps shots!
WHAT TO SEE?
Unlike other European destinations, Nuremberg’s high season comes in December with the arrival of the world famous Christkindlesmarkt (or Christmas Market). The Main Market Square is filled with stalls selling smoked meats, mulled wine and fresh gingerbread, all happening in front of the stunning Church of Our Lady. However, even in November it was still beautiful with a local market selling fresh gingerbread, flowers and other kinds of street food.
For some good cafes and coffee shops (AND photo ops 😉 ) head over to Weißgerbergasse (Tanner’s Lane) for the largest grouping of traditionally Bavarian half-timbered houses.
Walk up past the Old Town Hall and pop into St. Sebaldus Church (which is gorgeous and packed with so much free historical information!) on your way up to the Kaiserburg, or Imperial Castle. The Imperial Castle sits high overlooking the city and was one of the most important fortified imperial palaces of the Holy Roman Empire. It also has a museum inside the castle that is worth a visit.
The view from the Imperial Castle
Nearby, you can visit the house (and now museum) of famed German artist Albrecht Dürer which is still in tact from when it was constructed in 1420! Other sights for history buffs include the Nuremberg Trials Memorial and the Documentation Center for the Nazi Party Rally Grounds.
Exploring the Old Town area
…when in Germany 😉
THE BEST DAY TRIP?
If you have more than 2 days in Nuremberg, I highly recommend taking a short 1 hr train and visiting Rothenburg ob der Tauber — one of the most well-preserved medieval villages and truly something straight out of a story book. Its small size allows for it to be easily explored in a day, and it is really, just, I mean, well…I’ll just let my photos do the talking here 😉
Climb one of the towers of the old city walls for an incredible view!
The city walls envelop the entire Old Town and it takes about an hour to walk around the entire perimeter.
There are tons of little shops with all kinds of German treats!
Plönlein (the little yellow house) — one of the most famous views of the town!
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