Nuremberg, Germany is a fabulous city to explore German history and food. Visitors can enjoy good food, drink, and history within a small area.
Nuremberg, aka Nurnberg, is located on the Danube River and is a popular stop on many of the Danube River cruises. The city’s history dates at least to 1050 AD when mention of it is found in writings. The castle complex that towers over the city was built during this period to show the importance of the location in trade and finance. The hike to this medieval castle is worth it for the views. (Check out the Nuremberg Pass to save money if you will be visiting for several days.) The castle has guided and self-guided tours as well as special themed tours that appeal to particular audiences.
The Alstadt (Old Town) is fun to stroll through. Street artists entertain visitors with bubble blowing, violin playing, and drawing. (Please remember to tip these artists if you are pleased with their performances.) The statues in town are interesting and sometimes bizarre. The Ships of Fools, a fifteenth century satire about the seven deadly sins, has been adapted in a statue and now has three of the deadly sins being technology, violence, and apathy.
The main square of the Alstadt contains a beautiful fountain, the Schoner Brunnen, which is surrounded by a fence. We were instructed to turn one of the two rings on the fountain. We later learned that one of the rings is turned for good luck while the other is turned for fertility. (We hope we turned the correct one!) Exploring the area makes visitors thirsty and hungry, so Nuremberg offers many opportunities for food and drink. We had to sample the 3 im weckle, which means three sausages in a bun. Nuremberg is famous for these little sausages, which are served with great mustard and, of course, require a German beer to accompany them. The many gelato shops called our name after the 3 im weckle so we had to sample some of the many flavors. Visitors can visit the Galeria Kaufhof for shopping and for commanding views of the city from its top floor. The bridges over the canal also offer beautiful views of 300-year old buildings.
If visitors are fortunate enough to visit in December, they can experience a fabulous Christmas market. The market highlights some of the many local crafts and foods. Nuremberg is particularly known for their gingerbread (Lebkuchen) and toys. The Nuremberg Toy Museum is worth a visit anytime of the year.
The city was also the site of many WWII events. The ruins of the Nazi Party Rallying Grounds are a grim reminder of Hitler’s megalomania. The Documentation Center inside gives a good overview of the use of the Congress Hall and the surrounding land. The Nuremberg Trials were held in the Palace of Justice. In that place, leaders of the Nazi Party faced an International Military Tribunal to answer for their crimes. (The courtroom is still in use today, so plan your visit carefully.)
Evenings in Nuremberg are fun, and restaurants serve good food. The old Granary is now a Beer Hall that also has huge pretzels that will make a meal for one. Street vendors come out in mass and tables line the street calling to visitors to come sample their foods.
Nuremberg is a great city to visit, whether your interest is history, fun, food, or all of the above. Have you visited Germany? If so, what was your favorite city?