On the way back home from our road trip through Slovenia we’ve stayed one night in Nürnberg as it is situated almost halfway on our journey. The city lies in the heart of the Bayern (Bavaria in English) district and counts over 500.000 inhabitants. The city is well known for its half-timbered houses in many colours, huge city walls and the river Pegnitz which gives the city a vibrant atmosphere. This blog is a mini-guide with my highlights of this 24 hour trip between the old city walls of Nürnberg.
This little island in the river has got one charming street (Trödelmarkt) and its mini park at the quayside is a nice getaway during summertime to enjoy the sun while laying in the grass.
Nürnberg Burg is the Imperial Castle of Nuremberg where the first buildings date back from around 1.000 which are a clear landmark from a distance. Because of the hight you will have a nice view over the city from here.
From the citadel you can enter the narrow but pretty park (via Burggraben) on top of the city wall.
View over the Tiergärtnertor Platz (square) from the viewpoint where you will have the best panorama sight over the Altstadt. On this sunny Friday afternoon many people where sitting on the square with a drink from one of the nearby cafés.
At the above mentioned Tiergärtnertor Platz stands the statue Der Hase (The Hare) as a tribute to Albrecht Dürer, one of Germanys most famous artists who has lived at this square for nearly 20 years in the 16th century. His house and atelier are open to the public.
Close to the city wall and the park (which is functioning as a ‘green lung’ hugging the old walls) you will find Bergbrand Rösterei, a great coffee bar along Weißgerbergasse. Here they serve in-house roasted specialty coffee, made from quality beans (organic and fair-trade) from Central and South America. I was happy to hear about their commitment that they donate €0,50 of every sold kilo of coffee to nature preservation projects. Keep up the good work guys!
The beautiful Weißgerbergasse (Tanner's Lane) has got the largest ensemble of medieval half-timbered houses of Nürnberg with nice restaurants, shops and ice-cream store Die kleine Eismanufaktur where they sell vegan ice cream too!
The Hauptmarkt is the central square of the Aldstadt (old city). On Saturday there is a colourful fruit- and vegetable market, and during Christmas this is the place where you will find the famous Christkindlmarkt (Christmas Market) with the Gothic Frauenkirche (The Church of our Lady).
Henkersteg (Hangman's Bridge in English...) is the bridge where in the Middle Ages the executioner walked from his isolated house on the island into the city, because he was not allowed to have contact with the citizens.
The lovely small Italian inspired Di Simo Caffè e Vini is located next to the river Pegnitz and is THE place in town where locals meet. As the café is situated at the foot of the bridge many people stand on top of the Karlsbrüke chatting and sipping on a glass of wine or aperol spritz. During the day it’s a coffee bar (also for breakfast and lunch) where they serve coffee made with the above mentioned Bergbrand coffee beans.
Ramencado is a family run ramen and avocado food bar, which was literally packed with locals (always a good sign). The broth cooks daily about 6 to 8 hours to get the best (umami) taste. I was really happy with the vegetarian options like the 'veggie ramen' made with dashi- and soy broth and kimchi (sweet and sour pickled cabbage) with pomegranate seeds.
We have stayed in one of the spacious apartments the stylish Hotel das PAUL, with in the front one of the main shopping streets (Kaiserstrasse) and in the back the river Pegnitz. Our apartment had windows on both sides and we were lucky to have a balcony overlooking the river and the cozy ‘terrace’ of Di Simo Caffé which I mentioned before. The hotel also functions as a popular bar/restaurant, so in the morning you can order a very tasty breakfast (including the overnight stay) from their menu in the restaurant or on their terrace overlooking the river.
To us the city of Nürnberg was the perfect place for a stop over because there is enough to see and of its charming looks and relaxed atmosphere. And it makes you journey towards (or from) your holiday destination much more interesting!
"It's not the destination, but the journey that matters" :)
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