Germany – the powerhouse of Western Europe. But how many cities in Germany could you actually name and how well do you know them? Whether you visit the big cities in Germany or decide to go to the lesser known cities in Germany, you will be immersed into an abundance of German history, culture, and traditions that will surprise you.

We have picked the brains of 8 travel bloggers giving your their top picks of places in Germany that are a must visit for every traveller. From the medieval village of Heidelberg to the city in the centerpiece of the Cold War, Berlin – our 8 bloggers have covered them all, giving you the best advice on where to eat, and what to do and what to see.

7. Göttingen

With thanks to Emily from www.thecosytraveller.co.uk

Lower Saxony’s university town of Göttingen may not be the most well-known cities in Germany, but this historic gem in the heart of Germany is well worth a visit. As well as a bustling town centre, Göttingen is home to peaceful gardens, quaint traditions, and even a symphony orchestra.

Kiss the Ganseliesel

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Visit the most kissed girl in the world. The Ganseliesel, a smiling statue of a little goose-girl is traditionally kissed by every Ph.D. student who graduates from Göttingen university.

Have Coffee and Cake at Cron & Lanz

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Skip lunch and head to Cron & Lanz, a coffee shop established back in 1876. Their marzipan cakes are completely out of this world.

Discover 2,000 Species of Plants and Animals

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Being a university town, it would be remiss to visit Göttingen and not learn something new. Pop by the Botanical Garden established in the early days of the university in 1736, and now featuring more than 2,000 species of plants.

 

6. Heidelberg

With thanks to Melanie from www.melaniefontaine.com

Heidelberg is a relatively small city with a lively student population and will hardly take more than a day to properly explore, it’s only about an hour away from Frankfurt by train and is directly next to the autobahn A5 on the way to Switzerland, it’s conveniently located for a tour around the colourful cities in Germany.

Admire the renaissance ruins of the Heidelberg Castle

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The one thing you definitely should not miss when visiting Heidelberg is the Heidelberg Castle. As the main site in Heidelberg, the castle is one of the primary reasons why people make the trek to this small city and it’s a Renaissance building that majestically overlooks the river valley. It’s a steep, but short walk and the view from the castle gardens alone is worth the climb.

Go on a walk on the Philosophenweg

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Head over the Old Bridge and climb up a steep and narrow path to the Philosophenweg. Once the stomping ground of poets and intellectuals of the Romantic era, the Philosophenweg provides plenty of stunning views over the town and the valley and allows for a quick escape into nature. The Philosophenweg is also the starting point of many other walking paths and if you feel so inclined you can easily begin exploring the classic German forest a little bit.

Eat the Most Delicious Pizza Outside of Italy

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Unter Freunden is a casual cafe-type place that sells amazing pizza by the slice that makes for the perfect lunchtime treat. My favorite is the Caprese Pizza with delectable buffalo mozzarella, but you really cannot go wrong with your choice. There are a lot of vegetarian and vegan options as well and if you fancy to add to your five a day there is also a great selection of health-conscious, yet delicious smoothies and juices.

5. Munich

With thanks to Christina from www.happytowander.com and Alex from www.speaking-denglish.com.

Munich, the capital of beer, sausage, pretzels… and Bavaria. Probably one of the best places in Germany to gain some ‘winter padding’, but there is so much more to see and do than just eat and drink. From sightseeing by bike to surfing in the city centre! Munich is full of hidden gems that will keep you busy in between meal times.

Try Your Hands on Surfing in the Middle of the City!

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“Munich is an amazing city with so many cool sights and activities! Don’t miss the expert surfers performing tricks on the Eisbach at all hours of the day and night, and be sure to soak up Munich’s incredible beer garden culture.” – Christina from www.happytowander.com

“The English Garden is the spot to hang out in Munich and on a sunny day, you might wonder if the entire city is there. Be sure to enter the English Garden at the Eisbachwelle so you can catch Munich’s iconic city surfers tearing it up on the endless wave, no matter what the weather.” – Alex, www.speaking-denglish.com

Bike along the Isar and end with a BBQ on the Flaucher

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“Munich is a bike friendly city, so rent a bike and head down to the Flaucher, one of the few spots you can legally grill in Munich. On a sunny summer day, there are tons of groups enjoying a little grill party on the river. Don’t worry if you don’t have a grill, there is an Edeka at Thalkirchen that sells single-use grills and all the beer and meat you can handle!” – Alex, www.speaking-denglish.com

Head to One of the Many Beer Gardens

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“My favourite is the Seehaus in the English Garden. Set next to a big glassy lake, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a beer at sunset. Food-wise, skip the overly touristy Hofbrauhaus and instead try some roasted pork in dark beer gravy at the Augustiner-Klosterwirt. Or, the veggie option, the Käsespätzle (a rich Bavarian mac and cheese).” – Christina from www.happytowander.com

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“There are dozens of beer gardens dotted around the city, but I recommend the Augustiner Keller for a taste of the best beer in Munich and the classic beer garden experience. P.S. – you can bring your own food!” – Alex, www.speaking-denglish.com

4. Berlin

With thanks to Danika and Chris from www.nodestinations.com

If you are planning on doing a tour around the cities in Germany, Berlin is will without a doubt have to be on the list. Ignoring the fact that it is the capital of Germany, Berlin is soaked in history and a unique culture. Our advice would be to leave Berlin as one of the last cities you visit on your tour. This way you will really be able to understand and feel the micro-culture that exists only in Berlin. It is almost its own country compared to the rest of Germany.

Walk Along Europes Largest Outside Art Gallery

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Take some time and walk through East Side Gallery as you appreciate the history hiding behind the art… There always seems to be something different to see! You can also spend hours walking around museum island, taking pictures of the architecture, or spending the afternoon at one of the museums.

Meet the World’s Largest Mounted Dinosaur

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Speaking of museums, the Natural History Museum is beautiful and they also have the largest mounted dinosaur in the world and quite the collection of taxidermy animals on display. The Jewish museum is another great place to visit, but give yourself a few hours as you get lost in the history and admire the modern architecture.

Search for Hidden Gems in Mauerpark

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Our favourite time to visit Berlin is in the Fall as the leaves begin to change. Every day they colors change giving spectacular views to those who notice. Definitely make sure to stop by Mauerpark in Prenzlauer Berg on Sunday, where you can get some great street style food from Korean BBQ to fantastic Turkish dishes as you peruse art and look for hidden treasures at the market.

Eat a German Favourite – Mushroom and Schnitzel

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If you’re looking for some authentic German food, we love a tiny hole in the wall place called Zum Schusterjungen. Service is quick, the food is authentic and their mushroom schnitzel is the best! 

3. Esslingen

With thanks to Nina from www.nina-travels.com

We would definitely recommend Esslingen Am Neckar to everyone keen of tradition, history, charming vibes, splendid views and good wine. So when you are near Stuttgart next time, make sure to add Esslingen Am Neckar to your itinerary of cities in Germany.

Take a Tour Back in Time  

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Wander around the old town and admire the half-timbered houses, which are actually the oldest in Germany.

Hike Up the CastleHhill for Stunning Views

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Get to know the town from the above and hike up among vineyards to reach the castle hill, offering stunning views over the town and its surroundings.

Sip on the Famous Local Sparkling Wine

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Make sure to order a glass of sparkling wine at the Kessler winery bar. The Kessler wine-makers were the first in Germany, who started to produce the sparkling wine.

2. Rothenburg

With thanks to Laura and Lance from www.traveladdicts.net

Rothenburg is a small medieval town in the Northern part of Bavaria. The fantastic thing about Rothenburg is that it has not been greatly affected by the urbanisation. It is still seeping in history and till today is interconnected through cobblestone streets, aligned with timber houses and protected by gatehouse and towers.

Discover the History of Law and Punishment

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The Medieval Crime Museum showcases the implements and tools of torture in Europe, but the museum is much more than a collection of oddities.  While abuse and torture play a central role, the museum chronicles the history of law and punishment.

Help the Watchmen Patrol the Streets at Night

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Every evening, the night watchman patrols the streets of Rothenburg ob der Tauber.  Visitors can join the watchman on his evening rounds while listening to the entertaining story that is the history of the city.  Walking with the night watchman is the highlight of a trip to Rothenburg and Germany’s Romantic Road!

Eat a Local Delicacy, Schneeball (Snowball)

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Walking the streets of Rothenburg, visitors can’t help but notice the store windows filled with sugary goodness.  These are Schneeballen, a fried pastry concoction coated with powdered sugar.  And they are delicious!

1. Hamburg

With thanks to Sarah from www.blondemoments.de

The only port city in our list. Hamburg is in northern Germany and the second biggest city in Germany. After Berlin and before Munich. This affluent city is split in two, with the river Elbe running through its core. Hamburg has many famous landmarks, including its many city centre based lakes, the fish market, the 2nd league football team St.Pauli and even its red light district – Reeperbahn! You will never be lost of things to do in this bustling city.

Stroll Along the Docks for Stunning Views

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There are actually a few awesome spots to go to and see the sunset. Besides the obvious St. Pauli Piers also called the St.Paulis Landungsbrücken you should go and check out dockland – from the roof or the waterfront the view will be stunning.

Walk Through the Elbe Tunnel

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Walk through the old Elbe tunnel / or st. Pauli Elbe tunnel. Walking is always a great way to discover a place and the best part? it is for free! and so is this tunnel. The 426m long tunnel opened in 1911 and is mostly used by pedestrians and cyclists to cross the river.

Eat at Zuckermonarchie

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Via. Instagram: @alexandrabeeren

Visit Zuckermonarchie. You will most definitely find me at this café. The pastry is just so amazing. If you want to get breakfast there be sure to get a reservation before.

Catriona Megahey

Catriona Megahey

Catriona (known correctly as Ka-tri-na or mistakenly as Ka-tre-o-na, but has given up trying and adheres to both) grew up in Hannover, Germany to Northern Irish parents. Spends her time trying to be active either cycling, playing football, GAA or drums.
Catriona Megahey