Visit Wetzlar's Historic Old Town

Categories: Family and Kids, Sightseeing, Cultural and History, Shopping, Dining, Entertainment

Lahn River with view of 13th-century Lahn Bridge (Alte Lahnbrücke)
Lahn River with view of 13th-century Lahn Bridge (Alte Lahnbrücke)

[ source: Flickr]

Wetzlar's historic Old Town offers plenty of old buildings, museums, and since it was temporary home to the famous writer Goethe back in 1772 (if you're interested in more details around Goethe there is a good article listed below that tells the story of Goethe in Wetzlar.)

The tightly woven ensemble of buildings and houses in Wetzlar's historic Old Town (Altstadt) with its half-timbered houses and stone buildings from Romanesque (Wetzlar Cathedral) to Gothic to Renaissance and Baroque is to a great extent as it was in the late 18th century, preserved and extensively restored. Thus the great squares of Buttermarkt/Domplatz (Butter Market/Cathedral Square), Fischmarkt (Fish Market), Eisenmarkt (Iron Market), Kornmarkt (Corn Market), and the former Franziskanerhof (Franciscan Yard), now called Schillerplatz.

You definitely want to visit the Wetzlar Dom (Cathedral). It is one of Wetzlar's landmark buildings. Building work began on the cathedral in 1230 and is still not finished. It is the successor to a former Church of the Saviour consecrated in 897. The Wetzlar Dom incorporates so many styles that it is like a stone album of German ecclesiastical architecture. Each master seems to have had his own ideas. Yet, it is remarkably harmonious on the inside with a trove of art treasures, including 14th-century frescoes and an unusual Pieta from 1380.

There are many noteworthy buildings to visit in the Wetzlar historic Old Town (e.g., the Lottehaus, Jerusalemhaus, and the Reichskammergerichtsmuseum), if time permits. Alternatively, just strolling casually through these old and small streets, looking at the shops, perhaps having dinner in one of the restaurants, and a dessert, for example ice cream at an Italian ice cafe.

At night there are many pubs open, some of them also offer live music.

If you want to spend more time in Wetzlar (Wetzlar vacation rentals | Wetzlar travel guide) to explore in more depth we recommend doing so over several days. There is a tourist information booth at Domplatz 8 which provides detailed maps, recommended tours etc.

The tour we recommend initially should take about 2-3 hours and is offered by Wetzlar's tourist information office. Just make sure you leave enough time to simply meander the streets of Wetzlar's historic Old Town.

Where to eat:

Wirt am Dom - Pizzeria
Domplatz 9
+49 (0) 6441-42522

Eiscafe Rialto
Lahnstr. 27
+49 (0) 6441-946284

Check out their Italian ice cream menu (yummy!)

About this Article

Bettina Kraft

This travel guide has been written by
  Bettina Kraft.

Bettina Kraft likes to write Germany related travel articles on Live Like a German - a site for exploring Germany, to learn more about its culture / language, and to find a great Germany vacation rental or holiday apartment when going on a Germany vacation. Bettina likes to help visitors from all over the world to experience Germany in a different, more personal way, and make it easy for them to do so by providing detailed travel tips and advise.

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Location, Map, and Driving Directions

Location: Lahninsel, Wetzlar, Germany

[ view larger map ]

Additional travel info

Park your car at the Lahninsel (parking is free there). From there you have a good starting point and access through Wetzlar's historic Old-town. You can see the Lahn river there, with a great view to the 13th-century Lahn Bridge (Alte Lahnbrücke.)

Related Links

Story of Goethe in Wetzlar

Wikipedia: Wetzlar

Wetzlar’s wikipedia page

Stadt Wetzlar

Official City Page Die offizielle Site stellt die Stadt vor und informiert über Öffnungszeiten und Telefonnummern der Verwaltung. Dazu gibt es Informationen zu ..

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