Top 10 German Cities
Categories: Sightseeing, Cultural and History, General Travel Info
[ source: Wikipedia]
Germany is not only one of the largest but also one of the most diverse countries in Europe. Similar to the USA, Germany consists of 16 states, which are all quite different from each other in regards to politics, economy, culture and the general way of living. A main reason for this is the former division of Germany into East and West after the Second World War. Even today — more than 20 years after the fall of the Berlin (Berlin vacation rentals | Berlin travel guide) Wall — these differences between the democratic West and the former socialist East are still very visible. Therefore, if any foreigner wants to get a well—rounded idea of what Germany is really like, it is never enough to only visit one city or region. Live Like A German has selected the top 10 German cities for you to visit on your next trip to experience as many facets of the country as possible.
Any top 10 list of German cities must begin with the capital itself. Since the German reunification in 1990, Berlin is not only the largest city in Germany but also its capital. It is a melting pot of Eastern and Western influences and certainly the most cosmopolitan city in the whole country. Because of cheap rents and the city’s colorful history, Berlin has quickly become a cultural hotspot. In no other city you can find as many museums, theatres, galleries, clubs and bars.
Cologne was founded by the Romans and is one of the country’s oldest cities. At its center you can find the world—famous Cologne (Cologne vacation rentals | Cologne travel guide) Cathedral. Apart from this iconic church, Cologne is mostly known for its excessive Carnival celebrations.
80% of Dresden’s historic center was destroyed in the Second World War, and during the time of Communism the government didn’t provide any funds to restore the many iconic landmarks. However, since the German reunification, Dresden (Dresden vacation rentals | Dresden travel guide) has found back to its former glory. Due to its idyllic location right by the river Elbe and its amazing Baroque architecture, Dresden is commonly known as “Florence at the Elbe”.
Frankfurt am Main
Frankfurt a. M is Germany’s financial center, which is reflected in its impressive skyline. Apart from the many skyscrapers, Frankfurt (Frankfurt vacation rentals | Frankfurt travel guide) a. M. is also home to one of the largest airports in Europe. In Frankfurt a. M. it is all about business, which makes it an ideal location for many international fairs, such as the Frankfurt Book Fair.
Hamburg (Hamburg vacation rentals | Hamburg travel guide)
Hamburg is Germany’s second—largest city and located in the North of the country. Its port, commonly known as
Gateway to the World, is one of the busiest ones in Europe and its legendary red—light district Reeperbahn is an international nightlife hotspot.
Heidelberg is not a large city but certainly among the most picturesque towns in Germany. It was the center of the Romanic movement in the 19th century. Thanks to the many beautiful half—timbered houses and narrow cobble stone streets, this flair of former times is still very much alive. Additionally, Heidelberg (Heidelberg vacation rentals | Heidelberg travel guide) is home to the oldest university in the country.
Leipzig played a big role in the fall of the Berlin Wall because its citizens mainly were the ones who initiated the peaceful revolution. Today Leipzig (Leipzig vacation rentals | Leipzig travel guide) is mostly known as a center for German art.
Munich is the beautiful capital of Bavaria and a gateway to the Alps. It certainly is the greenest of all the big German cities and a place where old Bavarian traditions are still very much alive. To get a true sense of Bavarian culture, you should visit Munich (Munich vacation rentals | Munich travel guide) in autumn during the Oktoberfest, the world—famous beer fair, which attracts more than six million visitors every year.
Nuremberg is an intriguing symbiosis of old and new. It is a buzzing modern city with a medieval town center. Here you can find traces of the city’s 950—year—old history at every corner. Nuremberg (Nuremberg vacation rentals | Nuremberg travel guide) is also world—famous for its lovely Christmas market.
It might be the smallest of the cities included in this top 10 list of German cities, but Weimar simply is the heart of German culture. Goethe, Bach and Nietzsche, among many other great German artists and thinkers, worked and lived here. Weimar (Weimar vacation rentals | Weimar travel guide) is also the center of the Bauhaus movement, which revolutionized the aesthetics of the 20th century.
About this Article
This travel guide has been written by Kathrin Wagner.
She grew up in a small town in Bavaria and then studied Media studies, Literature and History in Erlangen and Munich. As a student she already spent half a year in London and moved back there after graduation in 2006. She is still living in London, where she works in publishing.
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