Day 1. A weekend in Nuremberg

Nuremberg is the second largest city in Bavaria, southern Germany.  It’s a city famous for its Imperial castle, half timbered houses and cobblestone squares, and somewhere I’d long wanted to visit.  One Friday evening a few weeks ago my wish finally came true as we took a Ryanair flight from London Stansted to Nuremberg’s Albrecht Dürer airport for a short break.

Boarding a Ryanair flight to Nuremberg
Boarding our Ryanair flight to Nuremberg

Getting into the city centre couldn’t have been easier as it was just a 10 minute hop on Metro Line U2 (single tickets €3.20) into the centre.  Our accommodation for the weekend was at the Leonardo Royal Hotel located close to the central railway station (Hauptbahnhof) and ideally situated for exploring the city.

Room, Leonardo Royal Hotel, Nuremberg
Our room at the Leonardo Royal Hotel, Nuremberg

After settling in to our stylish room we enjoyed an evening stroll through the old town finding an inn called Restaurant Augistiner for a late supper.

Restaurant Augustiner, Nuremberg
Restaurant Augustiner, Nuremberg

The next morning we were up bright and early and after a hearty breakfast in our hotel we set off for a day’s sightseeing.  We’d arranged Nuremberg Cards (€28) valid on two consecutive days, covering admission to the city’s museums and attractions plus free public transport within the entire Nuremberg region.  These can be pre-arranged ahead of arrival or purchased from the tourist office in the market square.

Craftsmen's Courtyard, Nuremberg
Craftsmen’s Courtyard, Nuremberg

Our first stop was at the Craftsmen’s Courtyard located just across the road from the railway station beside the medieval walls and towers.  We entered through the Konigstor (Kings Gate) which led us into a charming courtyard of small half-timbered houses.  Here we found handicrafts on sale alongside small inns and bakers offering traditional Franconian delicacies such as local bratwurst sausage and gingerbread.

Craftsmen's Courtyard, Nuremberg
Narrow alleyways in the Craftsmen’s Courtyard

Moving on from there, it was then just a short walk to the Altstadt (old town) which has been lovingly restored after wartime devastation.  The Altstadt is divided into almost two equal parts by the Pegnitz River which flows through the city centre.  We paused to admire the beautiful views of the old town from the Museum Bridge along Königstraße with its characterful buildings dating back to the Middle Ages.

Views from Museum Bridge, Nuremberg
Stunning views from Museum Bridge

From there we could see the beautiful Heilig-Geist-Spital (Holy Spirit Hospital).  This was the largest hospital in the former Free Imperial City of Nuremberg.  The building holds importance as at one time it held the Crown Jewels of the Holy Roman Empire.

St. Lawrence Church, Nuremberg
St. Lawrence Church, Nuremberg

From there, it was just a few steps to Lorenzkirche (St. Lawrence Church).  Built in 1250, it has been an Evangelical Lutheran church since 1525.  Restoration work began in 1952 following severe damage inflicted on it during the Second World War.  As with all Nuremberg’s churches, it’s free to enter to view its elaborate interior, a huge rose stained glass window and one of the world’s largest organs.

The high altar, St. Lawrence Church, Nuremberg
The high altar of St. Lawrence Church

Soon we had reached the large cobblestone Hauptmarkt (market square) where a daily market takes place with stalls offering items such as fresh fruit, vegetables, flowers and bread.

The Church of our Lady, Hauptmarkt, Nuremberg
The Church of our Lady, Hauptmarkt

Dominating the square is the Gothic Frauenkirche (The Church of Our Lady) which was built as an Imperial court chapel between 1352-1362 on the instruction of Emperor Charles IV and is among the three most important churches in the city.  Taking a look inside the church we viewed the Emperor window containing the three oldest stained glass windows in Nuremberg and the Tucher painted altarpiece.

Interior of the Church of Our Lady, Nuremberg
The interior of the Church of Our Lady

One of the most notable features of the church is its mechanical clock (glockenspiel) commemorating the Golden Bull of 1356.  The clock mechanism is activated at midday so it’s a good idea to be in the square then as at 12.00 noon a bell is rung.  This starts the sequence followed by the trumpeters and a drummer continuing with a procession of the electors around the figure of the Holy Roman Emperor.

Beautiful Fountain, Nuremberg
Beautiful Fountain in the Hauptmarkt

Located next to the town hall in one corner of the market square stands the magnificent 14th century Schöner Brunnen (Beautiful Fountain).  The fountain is 19 metres tall and in the shape of a Gothic spire.  Legend has it that if you make a wish and then turn the Golden Ring, it will come true.

Wicklein Gingerbread, Nuremberg
Wicklein Gingerbread shop and cafe in the market square

Hauptmarkt is home to the annual Christkindlesmarkt, one of the oldest and most famous Christmas markets in the world.  It would be hard to think of a more beautiful location to wander around the enchanting wooden huts sipping mulled wine, eating gingerbread and bratwurst.  Gingerbread isn’t just available at Christmas time though as overlooking the square is the Wicklein Gingerbread shop and cafe filled with tempting treats and who also run activity workshops learning how to create your own delicacies.  We enjoyed looking around and hopefully we’ll have an opportunity to participate in one of their workshops on a future visit.

Henkerbrucke, Nuremberg
Henkerbrucke

Our tour of the city then took us along the riverside over to Trödelmarkt, a small island in the Pegnitz River that takes its name from the second-hand market which used to take place there.  Going back even further in medieval times it was home to a pig market.  Nowadays, it’s home to beautifully restored historic homes, many of them now cafes and boutiques.

The wooden Henkersteg footbridge, Nuremberg
The wooden Henkersteg footbridge

Along the western side of the island stands one of Nuremberg’s most picturesque sights, that of the Hangman’s Bridge (Henkersteg).  This wooden footbridge dates from 1457 and between the 16th and 19th centuries the hangman lived in the round tower and reached the town by crossing this bridge.

Maxbrucke, Nuremberg
The Maxbrucke, stone arched bridge

From there we followed the path along to the Max Bridge (Maxbrücke) a triple arched old stone bridge from where we had splendid views on one side to Weinstadel (a former wine warehouse).  This is one of Germany’s largest half-timbered houses dating between 1446-1448.  The interior of the building has now been transformed into student accommodation boasting beautiful vistas across the old town.

Weinstadel, Nuremberg
The Weinstadel (old wine warehouse)

Our stroll then took us across Kettensberg, which is thought to be the oldest surviving iron chained suspension bridge in Europe. The bridge led us to Weißgerbergasse, a winding street of beautiful half-timbered houses along which we paused several times to take photos.  Known also as Tanners’ Lane, these old craftsmen’s houses reflect the wealth created by the leather working trade in this part of Germany.

Weißgerbergasse, Nuremberg
Weißgerbergasse (Tanner’s Lane), Nuremberg

Continuing from there it was just a short distance to the Nuremberg Toy Museum.  Regular readers of my blog will already be aware of my interest in toys, so visiting this museum had been on my wish list for some time.  Entrance to the museum is €7 and as with the majority of the city’s museums is included in the Nuremberg Card.

Nuremberg Toy Museum
The Toy Museum

Nuremberg has been well known for its toys for over 600 years with its tradition going back to medieval doll makers through to pewter figurines and tin toy makers.  The city is also home to the International Toy Fair, the world’s largest trade show of its kind.

Exhibits in the Nuremberg Toy Museum
Exhibits in the Toy Museum

The most important collection of Lehmann tin toys is the focus of one gallery depicting the history of the company including  a large collection of cars, trains and steam engines.  Other exhibits include dolls, dolls houses, board games and a model railway.  The museum is a treasure trove of childhood for visitors of all ages and I would definitely recommend a visit.

The church of St. Sebald, Nuremberg
The church of St. Sebald

Located quite near to the Toy Museum stands the Church of St. Sebald, so we decided to take a look there next.  This late Romanesque basilica is notable and visible from a distance due to its two tall towers.  It’s Nuremberg’s oldest parish church and one of the most prominent in the city boasting three naves and high arched ceilings.

Bratwurst Roslein, Nuremberg
Bratwurst Roslein Beer Hall where we had lunch

Exploring the old town had made us hungry so we popped into Bratwurst Roslein  for a little rest, a bite to eat and glasses of the local red beer which is a special type of bottom-fermented beer that has been brewed locally since the Middle Ages.  It was the first time we’d tried a red beer and we found it to our taste and a very refreshing drink.

Deutsches Museum, Nuremberg
The newly opened Deutsches Museum

Feeling refreshed, it was time to visit some more of Nuremberg’s excellent museums starting with the newly opened Deutsches Museum – the museum of the future (standard admission €9.50).  The focus of the museum is what the future may look like in the world of science and technology, effectively the world of tomorrow.

System Earth gallery in the Deutsches Museum, Nuremberg
System Earth gallery in the Deutsches Museum

The galleries provide an insightful look into ways technology may develop and the effects it may have on us, from digital robots in the home, Hyperloop transport solutions and our future habitat on Earth and in space.

Robot Dog
Robot Dog in The Deutsches Museum

Leaving there we headed across town to the DB Railway Museum located close to the central railway station (standard admission €7).  This museum is one of the world’s oldest railway museums having opened its doors in 1882 and is based in Nuremberg as it was in this city that the first ever German rail journey took place.

The Adler steam locomotive, DB Museum, Nuremberg
The Adler steam locomotive in the DB Museum

It’s a fascinating museum telling the story of the railway in Germany from its origins to the present day.  We enjoyed touring the exhibition halls where we viewed a large number of engines and carriages including the Royal saloon car of King Ludwig II of Bavaria and the Adler, the first working steam locomotive used in Germany.

Royal Saloon Car, DB Museum, Nuremberg
The Royal Saloon Car in the DB Museum,

There’s also a huge amount of memorabilia on display ranging from uniforms and station clocks to tableware used in dining cars through the years.

Railway memorabilia in the DB Museum, Nuremberg
Railway memorabilia in the DB Museum

Across the street we explored the outdoor section where we viewed a selection of trains, signal boxes and platform shelters.  Back indoors, we viewed a large model railway that’s operated several times each day and on the top floor explored the Museum of Communications (entrance included in the DB Museum ticket).

Old switchboard in the Communications Museum, Nuremberg
Old switchboard in the Communications Museum, Nuremberg

Yet another interesting museum, its four exhibition rooms focus on sounds, images, texts and the internet with lots of fun, hands-on activities.  Included in the display is the first German telephone, postal delivery vehicles through the ages and a selection of equipment.

Postal vehicles and post boxes, Communications Museum, Nuremberg
Postal vehicle and post boxes in the Communications Museum

What a day we’d had exploring this historic city and the good news was we had two more days to see even more.  Back at our hotel we rested in our comfortable room awhile and then later enjoyed a meal in one of the traditional styled inns in the Craftsmen’s Courtyard nearby.

 

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88 thoughts on “Day 1. A weekend in Nuremberg

  1. Pingback: Blogger Meeting • Streets of Nuremberg • Blogger Meeting

  2. What a wonderful post on my hometown, Marion! I really enjoyed seeing my city through the eyes of a visitor. You writings and the photographs have perfectly captured the vibes of Nuremberg’s old town. I’m looking very much forward reading your second post, especially the part of our bloggers meeting 😉
    Thanks for sharing this!
    Marcus

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for your kind words Marcus. It means such a lot to receive such positive comments from someone who lives in the city. We had the most wonderful time and I do hope this series of posts inspires more people to consider visiting this beautiful part of Bavaria.

      Like

  3. Nuremberg seems like such a charming place to spend the weekend. I love the cobblestoned streets, historic buildings, arched bridges and the canals. Visiting Christkindlesmarkt close to Christmas sounds like it would be such a memorable experience. Thanks for sharing. Linda

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Day 1. A weekend in Nuremberg – FirstBenny.Updates.org

  5. Knew very little about Nuremberg (beyond the obvious) so this was all eye-opening. It looks like a really handsome place and clearly with lots to do. The gingerbread looks special and, oh lord, I haven’t had proper German Bratwurst since my Berlin trip many years ago. Some really cool details here, I’m particularly digging that old switchboard and that perfectly perched old Winehouse.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for taking an interest in this post on Nuremberg Leighton. It’s a fascinating city with its charming architecture and has a calm feel being quite compact. The museum s were all very interesting and yes communications have come on a long way since that old switchboard with its many plugs!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Thank you for introducing me to Bavaria via your (as always) detailed and informative post. I don’t really know Germany at all but I feel I should! I hope you have a lovely weekend in Chester. We’re off to Manchester tomorrow as our son will be graduating on Monday, nearly 3 years after his finals. It will only be a flying visit but we will try to fit in as much as we can.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Alison. We were originally due to visit for the Christmas market but as this didn’t happen we re-arranged for a couple of weeks ago and had a lovely time. The characteristic buildings are charming and I’m sure you would enjoy a short break there too.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Love the pictures of the churches! Your trip to the Museum für Kommunikation Nürnberg reminds me of my visit to the museum’s Berlin location and seeing its many fascinating exhibits. Nuremberg seems like a nice place to visit – thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much Darlene for taking an interest in this post featuring the first day of my weekend in Nuremberg. It’s such a beautiful city with its restored timber-framed buildings and interesting collection of museums. Hope you have a good weekend!

      Liked by 2 people

  8. I don’t remember stopping at Nuremberg, although the name evokes the famous Tribunal. The old town is full of well preserved old style houses, I like your presentation highlighting them.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. What a lovely post, Marion! I’ve been to Germany many times, but never made it to Nuremberg! I love European Old Towns filled with half-timbered houses and cobblestone squares as there’s so much character and history to experience. I am delighted to hear that your wish finally came through and that you had a chance to visit Nuremberg! Thanks for sharing and have a good day 🙂 Aiva xx

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Wonderful tour of this beautiful city! I can’t decide what I love more- the incredible architecture or the museums. I love the display of the toy museum with all the toys in the air! And that old switchboard is just fantastic. Saving this for when we make it to Bavaria 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  11. It has been a long time since I was in Nürnberg on a bus tour in 1984, but the views you have shared bring it all back. Way too little time in the city, but we enjoyed the time we had and explored away from our tour group. Thanks for sharing your trip Marion. Allan

    Liked by 4 people

  12. Oh my beautiful Nürnberg. This place is the most special place to me – in 2017 I had just lost my baby at 20 weeks and I went to Nürnberg, I booked in to a hotel for a week, I did nice long walks around the rally grounds, explored lots of the city and ate amazing food and drank A LOT of wine. It helped heal me and it will always be one of my most special places in the world. Thanks for the lovely memories 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Such a sad occasion for you to visit Hannah but I understand what you mean. The city’s beautiful architecture, interesting museums and lovely places to eat and drink make it an uplifting place and definitely one to heal the soul. Take care and have a lovely weekend. Let’s hope it warms up a bit! M.

      Liked by 3 people

  13. Yeah, (another) new city! Love the picture of the Craftsmen’s Courtyard (it just looks German 😉). Gingerbread … I hope you bought some to enjoy later with a steaming cup of tea! And what a stunning building the St. Lawrence Church is – wow, the detail in the centre … and inside, even more spectacular! And so is the Beautiful Fountain (I should have sent you one of my wishes ☺️).
    I love all of your museum visits … this looks like a jampacked day – I can’t wait for your stories and photo’s of the rest of your stay!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Just love gingerbread Corna and wandering the streets of Nuremberg was an absolute delight. That Beautiful Fountain really lived up to its name as it’s magnificent. The collection if museums we visited on our first day was so interesting too.Thanjx for commenting and have a great weekend.

      Liked by 1 person

          1. It’s the first day of my OH’s semi-retirement and I took him out for a delicious lunch. We’ve plenty of sport to look forward to this weekend: MotoGP from Argentine, Tour of Flanders bike race and a couple of key football matches for Villa and Nice.

            Liked by 2 people

  14. “It’s a city famous for its Imperial castle, half timbered houses and cobblestone squares,” Um, it’s more famous for a certain trial (i.e. Nazis) and you can still visit the courtroom. Somehow you failed to mention that in a long blog. Unbelievable.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for commenting on this post which covered the first day of our visit. If you might like to hear how we spent the subsequent days then the trial and courtroom will indeed be covered in a future post to coincide with the day we visited.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. ijstock

      Oh dear. Is it realy necessafy for Brits to resurrect that at every opportunity? Nobody forgets, but it’s time we moved on. Only a minority of present day Nuremburgers will even have been born at that time.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you so much for joining in the conversation and your support. I aim to provide balanced coverage and this dark side of the city’s past will be covered sympathetically in a future post. Nuremberg is a beautiful city with so much of interest.

        Liked by 2 people

  15. I visited Nuremburg during the Christmas markets, and it was such a beautiful and magical time (not to forget utter madness with the crowds!). I also had time to stroll the city in the day time, and Weißgerbergasse is definitely one of the highlights of the city. I also visited the Justizpalast and Documentation Center Nazi Party Rally Grounds to learn about the city’s dark, but significant past during Nazi times, which was a change of pace from the picturesque Old Town I wandered in. Great memories from Nuremberg, and all of Bavaria!

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Originally our weekend in Bavaria had been planned for the Christmas Market but as it had to be cancelled the trip got pushed back a little. It was a lovely weekend visiting Bavaria for the first time and delighting in its beautiful architecture. Thanks for commenting and have a great weekend. Marion

      Liked by 3 people

    2. cjkaras

      Nuremberg sounds amazing, museums, churches, Christmas markets, I love all of those things. You seem to have covered the city well. Now I’m dying to visit. Thanks for sharing this post.

      Liked by 4 people

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