20 Things To Do In Nuremberg

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Nuremberg is a beautiful German city that has taken the time to carefully preserve its medieval history. Spend some time exploring the Old Town, where many of the structures feature half-timbered frames. The Old Town wall is a must-visit landmark and one that offers some lovely views of the city. The best time to visit is between May and September as during winter the weather turns very cold very quickly but if you do choose to visit in winter there are still plenty of things to do in Nuremberg too.

Nuremberg is home to many unusual museums including the Pigeon Museum, which has an impressive collection of porcelain pigeons among other pigeon themed objects. As you explore the city look out for food stalls selling Nuremberg sausages, which are three perfectly grilled sausages served in soft buns topped with mustard making ideal snack to eat as you wander. The city has come a long way from its World War II past, where it was closely tied to the Nazi Party. The city has preserved some of these sites, including the courtroom where the Nuremberg Trials took place, as a reminder of the atrocities committed during World War II, with the hope that they can never be allowed to happen again.

Aside from its turbulent 20th century history, Nuremberg is rich in older histories with its skyline dominated by its 12th century fortress. Around 90% of Nuremberg was destroyed in bombing raids during World War II, however in  decades that followed the city was rebuilt with many of the buildings reconstructed to reflect their history. Aside from history, the city is filled with art. From murals adorning its buildings to its modern art museums, there are plenty of things to do in Nuremberg to inspire your creativity. There are many exciting and interesting things to do in Nuremberg; here are 20 to get you started.

Nuremberg, Germany

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20 Things To Do In Nuremberg

1- Visit The Imperial Castle of Nuremberg

Castle In Nuremberg
Visiting the Imperial Castle is one of the top things to do in Nuremberg.

One of the most astounding historical buildings in Nuremberg is the Imperial Castle.

The first recorded mention of the Imperial Castle of Nuremberg dates from 1050, where it was used by royalty.

It was also used by every emperor of the Holy Roman Empire until 1571.

The castle was all but destroyed in 1945 however some important areas of Romanesque and late Gothic architecture survived.

Rudolf Esterer, a German architect and professor, had the castle rebuilt exactly as it was before the war in a bid to preserve the city’s history.

Inside the castle is a museum dedicated to the history of the castle and city with a particular focus on Nuremberg during the Middle Ages.

Imperial Castle of Nuremberg is at Burg 17, 90403 Nürnberg.

Recommended:

2- Explore Weißgerbergasse On Foot

Famous Weissgerbergasse Historic Street
Exploring Weißgerbergasse on foot is one of the best things to do in Nuremberg in July.

Weißgerbergasse, translating to Tanners’ Lane, was populated with tanners who lived and worked on this street during the Middle Ages.

The street is a landmark within Nuremberg as it holds the largest collection of half-timbered medieval houses in the city.

These picturesque buildings have been transformed into boutique shops, cafes, trendy restaurants and a number of workshops.

Exploring the area on foot allows you to take time to admire these buildings and take your time as you visit shops that catch your eye.

This street is a great location to shop for souvenirs or to find somewhere to eat.

Weißgerbergasse is at 90403 Nuremberg-Mitte.

Recommended tour: Nuremberg: Old Town Guided Walking Tour

3- Admire The Ancient Church of Lorenzkirche

St Lorenz Church In Nuernberg
Visiting St Lorenz Church is one of the top things to do in Nuremberg.

One of the best things to do when in Nuremberg is visit its iconic Lorenzkirche, or the Church of St Lawrence.

The church was built during the mid to late 13th century in the Gothic style, features three aisles similar to basilicas in Italy, and was later expanded to include a large choir hall.

One of the most beautiful architectural design features of Lorenzkirche is its rose window, which dates from the mid 14th century.

Early morning visits to the church offer some of the best views of the window as the sunrise hits it.

Works by Viet Stoß and Adam Kraft can be seen inside the church alongside medieval altars and plenty of stained glass.

The church features two towers that, despite looking identical, differ in height, with one being 80m (262ft) and the other 81m (265ft) tall.

Lorenzkirche is at Lorenzer Pl. 1, 90403 Nürnberg.

Recommended tour: Nuremberg: 1.5-Hour Private Tour through Historical Old Town

4- Uncover History At Memoriam Nuremberg Trials

The Memoriam Nuremberg Trials is an important historical landmark in Nuremberg that is well worth a visit.

This unusual landmark was the courtroom for the trials of many leaders of the Nazi regime.

In courtroom 600, the trials of many Nazi leaders took place on 20 November 1945 in front of the International Military Tribunal.

The building today serves as a historical documentation centre and museum that sheds light on the atrocities committed by the Nazi party during World War II, and the impact of the trials outcome over the decades that followed.

Memoriam Nuremberg Trials is at Bärenschanzstraße 72, 90429 Nürnberg.

Recommended tour: Nuremberg Old Town and Nazi Rally Grounds Walking Tour

5- Walk Along The City Walls

Spittlertor Tower In Nuernberg
Walking along the city walls is one of the free things to do in Nuremberg.

The city walls of Nuremberg were one of the only parts of the city to largely survive the severe bombing of World War II.

The walls were built during the 12th century as a way of fortifying the town and protecting the castle.

They originally stretched for 5 kilometres (3.11 miles) around the city with approximately 4 kilometres (2.49 miles) remaining intact today.

Around the walls are gates that allow access to the city, and many defensive towers with 88 still remaining.

Take a look around the walls and absorb the city’s ancient history.

Recommended tour: Nuremberg: Defensive corridors in the City Wall

6- Take A boat Out On The lake (Großer Dutzendteich)

Kleiner Dutzendteich Lake In Nuernberg
Kleiner Dutzendteich Lake best things to do in Nuremberg Germany.

Großer Dutzendteich is a man-made lake in Nuremberg that makes for a great day out.

The lake was built as a reservoir in the 14th century and takes its name from the medieval German word for reed.

Visiting the lake became a popular thing to do in the 19th century with families heading to its shores to relax, swim and boat.

In 1906 a lighthouse was built on the shores of Großer Dutzendteich as part of the Bavaria state Exhibition, which allowed visitors to climb to the top and admire the scenery.

The lighthouse was sadly demolished by the Nazi party as they planned to place a political building on the lakes shore, which incidentally was never completed.

Spend an afternoon relaxing by the lake, strolling along the shoreline or take a sail boat out onto the water.

Großer Dutzendteich is at 90471, Nuremberg.

7- Shop In The Market Square

Nuremberg, Main Square
Shopping in the market square is one of the fun things to do in Nuremberg this weekend.

Hauptmarkt is Nuremberg’s main market square and is a great place to start your visit to the city.

The market square is a historical landmark in Nuremberg and is one that has been important for the city since medieval times.

The square holds regular markets including the weekly market where fresh seasonal produce, fruits and vegetables and stalls selling brightly coloured flowers are available.

The market square is more than just a place to shop in, as it also has lots of historical sites.

Admire the Schönen Brunnen, a beautiful fountain in the square, or spend some time visiting Frauenkirche, the Church of our Lady.

Nuremberg Market Square is at Hauptmarkt, 90403 Nuremberg.

8- Visit Germanisches National Museum

The Way Of Human Rights, Nuremberg, Germany
Visiting Germanisches National Museum is one of the best things to do in Nuremberg on a rainy day.

Germanisches National Museum is a must visit museum in Nuremberg.

The museum focuses on German cultural history and is filled with artefacts and interactive exhibitions.

The museum has both permanent and special, time limited exhibitions.

Their permanent exhibition has a collection of 25,000 objects displayed covering everything from works of art to tools used by some of the earliest humans.

One of the highlights of a visit to the museum is seeing the oldest globe in the world.

The Behaim Globe has UNESCO World Heritage status and maps the world as it was believed to be from a European point of view in 1492 when it was created.

At this time, Europeans did not know of the American continent so it was missed from the design.

Shortly after the globe was made, Christopher Columbus landed in America.

Germanisches National Museum is at Kartäusergasse 1, 90402 Nuremberg.

9- Learn About Print Making at Albrecht Dürer House

Durer's House
Learning about print making at Albrecht Dürer House is one of the interesting things to do in Nuremberg Germany.

Albrecht Dürer was a German renaissance artist who lived in Nuremberg towards the end of his life.

The Albrecht Dürer House was lived in by the artist between 1509 to 1528 when he died.

Dürer is one of Germany’s most famous artists and printmakers, and the house turned museum documents where he lived and worked under the same roof.

The house is a rarity in Nuremberg as it survived World War II in good condition, and is the only 15th century artists home in the whole of Europe.

Explore the house with an actress portraying Agnes, Dürers wife, as she leads you through each room, taking the time to share facts and stories about the artist.

Albrecht Dürer House is at Albrecht-Dürer-Straße 39, 90403 Nuremberg.

10- Make A Wish at Schöner Brunnen Tower

Schoner Brunnen Iconic Fountain With Gothic Spire Shape
Making a wish at Schöner Brunnen Tower is one of the things to do in Nuremberg Germany.

A great thing to do in Nuremberg is paying a visit to Schöner Brunnen Tower.

This spectacular Gothic fountain is surrounded by an iron fence to protect it from damage.

It is displayed in the main square a short walk away from some of the city’s most beloved landmarks.

Heinrich Beheim created the fountain in 1396, however to ensure its preservation, it was transferred to the Germanisches National Museum in the 20th century, with a replica displayed in the square placed in 1912.

The tower is 19m (62.34ft) tall and is adorned with 40 brightly coloured statues representing the Holy Roman Empire.

Schöner Brunnen Tower is at Hauptmarkt, 90403 Nuremberg.

11- Tour The Beer cellars

Venture underground on a unique tour to learn about beer making in Nuremberg.

The first documented mention of the beer cellars under the city is from 1380 where the cellars were dug for beer to ferment and be stored.

The cellars were dug into red sandstone which helped to create the cities famous red beer.

Small parts of the historical cellars are used by brewers including craft brewers Hausbrauerie Altstadthof.

On tours you will learn about the unique cellar system, before sampling some local beers in a tavern.

Förderverein Nürnberger Felsengänge e.V beer cellars is at Bergstraße 19, 90403 Nuremberg.

Recommended tour: Nuremberg: Private 1.5-Hour Tour with Brewery Visit

12- Find The City’s Unusual Statues

For an unusual thing to do in Nuremberg, head out across the city on the hunt of its statues.

While Nuremberg has traditional statues of famous residents from the city’s history, it also has a collection of unexpected statues.

There are at least 25 of these unusual statues which include rhinos, blue horses and chickens.

Inspiration from artist Albrecht Dürer’s wood cuts can be found in some of the statues.

Other statues across the city feature more modern designs, and some hold references to Germany’s history with war.

Nuremberg’s statues can be found across the city.

Recommended tour: Nuremberg: Silbersee and Große Straße District Phone Game

13- Bird Watch At The Pigeon Museum

Visit the Pigeon Museum for an interesting avian-themed thing do do in Nuremberg.

The Pigeon Museum is home to more than 120,000 items focusing on pigeons and their history within Germany.

Included in the collection are more than 4000 porcelain pigeons, watercolours, stamps and literature all focused on these birds.

As well as admiring various pieces of art and everyday items focusing on pigeons, the museum also teaches visitors about pigeons and their history as messengers, particularly during wars.

Pigeon Museum is at Schießplatzstraße 40, 90469 Nuremberg.

14- Admire Modern Art at Neues Museum

Spend a day immersing yourself in modern art at Neues Museum.

Volker Staab, an architect, designed the museum for the Free State Of Bavaria.

The museum has art from the 1950s to present day.

The museum spans 3000 square meters (32,291 square feet) of exhibition space and includes celebrations of both German and international artists.

The museum has an extensive exhibition selection that regularly changes, allowing for as much modern art to be displayed as possible.

Current exhibitions include a focus on Grace Weaver, an American artist who creates everyday scenes painted in bold colours, and a retrospective on Reinhard Voigt, a Berlin artist focusing on pixel-style art.

Neues  Museum is at Luitpoldstraße 5, 90402 Nuremberg.

15- Shop In Trendy Goho

Inspired by Soho in London, Goho is Nuremberg’s answer to a cool and trendy city district.

Expect to find plenty of vintage clothing shops, microbreweries, designer shops ran by local designers and bicycle repair workshops.

The area is very down to earth and among the trendy shops are greengrocers, wine shops and general stores.

There are plenty of cosy cafes serving warming cups of coffee, delicious cakes, and all offering a welcome place for a rest.

Aside from the shops and bars, Goho is a haven for street art.

Inside this neighbourhood you can find many colourful graffiti’s and murals.

Goho is at Gostenhof, Nuremberg.

16- Indulge in Traditional Lebkuchen

Traditional German Lebkuchen
Tasting traditional Lebkuchen is one of the things to do in Nuremberg in winter.

Enjoy something sweet and spicy and try lebkuchen while visiting Nuremberg.  

This sweet treat is often associated with Christmas and is available across the world.

Lebkuchen originated in Nuremberg, where it has been baked for more than 600 years.

Nuremberg began making lebkuchen when locals discovered that thanks to the forests surrounding the city, the bees were making a sweeter honey, that could be used in combination with a blend of spices including ginger and cinnamon to create a delicious biscuit.

To be traditional lebkuchen, the treat must be made in Nuremberg, and this trademark is protected under European law.

The city produces more than 70 million lebkuchen each year, that are either traditionally sugar coated, or dressed up with chocolate or almond decorations,

17- Relive Childhood Memories at the Toy Museum

Another of Nuremberg’s excellent museums is the Toy Museum.

A visit to the Toy Museum is the perfect thing to do in the city for families.

Nuremberg has made toys for more than 600 years and is well known for its production of pewter figures and tin toys from the Industrial Revolution.

The museum charts the city’s lengthy toy making history, documented through almost 100,000 items.

Among its collections are many traditional wooden toys dating from the 17th century produced in Nuremberg itself.

Toy Museum is at Karlstraße 13-15, 90403 Nuremberg.

18- Discover Germany’s rail heritage at DB Museum

Those who have a passion for rail travel will enjoy an afternoon at the DB Museum in Nuremberg.

The museums permanent exhibition charts Germany’s railway history through 200 years of engineering.

Germany’s railway history began in 1835 with steam trains that continued to run until 1919 when war began to change the face of their rail network.

In the museums there are collections including train engines and carriages, and plenty of railway memorabilia.

The museum hosts regular themed events for families, and guided tours are available throughout the year,

DB Museum is at Lessingstraße 6, 90443 Nuremberg.

19- Browse the Stalls at Handwerkerhof

Handwerkerhof is Nuremberg’s makers and artisans yard.

Here you will find a variety of workshops and stores where craftspeople practice a range of traditional to modern handicrafts.

Inside the market is the oldest sausage maker in the city, where delicious and traditional dishes are served.

The yard has been open since 1971 and is set inside a yard overlooked by half-timbered buildings.

Within the yard are goldsmiths, wood workers making traditional wooden toys and potters making bowls, plates and more in a public-facing studio.

Explore the yard and admire the makers hard at work, before purchasing a hand made souvenir.

Handwerkhof is at Königstraße 82, 90402 Nuremberg.

20- Marvel at the Gothic Architecture of Frauenkirche

Frauenkirche, Nuremberg, Germany
Marvelling at the Gothic architecture of Frauenkirche is one of the things to do in Nuremberg in May.

Another beautiful church to visit in Nuremberg is Frauenkirche, or the Church of Our Lady.

The church is one of the most important in the city, alongside the churches of St Lorenz and St Sebald.

Charles IV had the church built in the Gothic style between 1352 and 1362 in place of a Jewish synagogue that was destroyed in the late 1340s.

Frauenkirche is home to the three oldest stained glass windows in the city.

Inside, the church is warm and welcoming with plenty of places to sit and reflect, or to admire the religious artworks, sculptures and stained glass.

Frauenkirche is at Hauptmarkt 14, 90403 Nuremberg.

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sarah holmes travel writer
Sarah Holmes is a travel and fashion writer living in the heart of England. From family adventures in numerous parts of the UK and Europe to exploring cities as an adult, Sarah has a wide knowledge of the best areas, sights and local tips that the UK and the neighbouring continent can offer. Sarah grew up in the North East of England, with incredible sights and landmarks only a short drive away. Her favourite places to visit include Seaham Beach, the Lake District and Alnwick Castle. Sarah has written for a range of fashion and travel blogs and print publications.