First of all, if you’ve chosen to come to Bavaria for your German excursion, you’ve made such an excellent choice and I am so happy for you. It’s beautiful- you’ve seen that already on your online searches! It’s so easy to get to from London.
I first came to Munich in 2007 and so it has been 11 years since I’ve made it back to this region. I have had a longing to visit the old city of Nuremberg for some time. It sounds odd, but initially I was keen to see the court house which took down the war criminals who destroyed the lives of so many. That and how “chocolate box pretty” the area is- quite a contrast in reasons hey? Flights are only around £45-50 if booking ahead with Ryanair from London Stanstead, so an absolute steal.
First of all, if like me you are travelling alone, you might like to have a think about whether this is a week of required alone time for you, or how social you want to be. For instance, I decided on my arrival in Nuremberg I would stay for the first night in a hostel in the old town, to orientate myself to the city and be in prime location for exploring. Then I decided on 2 nights in an Air BnB, to be able to write and read, and walk around in my undies basically without any disturbance! I think I made an excellent choice 🙂
1) Where to stay
Take a look as I did at Air Bnb, but should you fancy a hostel then The Five Reasons Hostel and Hotel is an excellent find, at just over 25 Euros for a dorm room per night http://www.five-reasons.de/home It’s at the bottom of the Old Town, literally 20 steps from the Opernhaus UB station and right by the Old Town wall. As it’s a cross between a hostel and a hotel, it’s magnificently clean, high ceilings and modern minimalist décor. The staff are super nice and the showers and bathrooms are probably the best of any hostel I stayed in! It actually felt quite luxurious. Each room has a locker with a key provided (1 returnable Euro to use) and a night light beside each bed which is also super handy so you don’t have to worry about your valuables.
I also recommend Air Bnb whether you are travelling solo, a couple, or as a group. For £35 a night, I stayed in Muggenhof. The UB station is only a few stops away from the centre of Nuremberg, and the UB is so so simple to use. It’s a guaranteed option for a good nights sleep and sometimes THAT is priceless!
2) What to do
-I visited Albrech Durrer’s house https://museums.nuernberg.de/albrecht-duerer-house/ Built in the 15th century, it’s in remarkable condition and amazing to see the size of the home where artist Durrer and his wife Agnes lived. The audio guide and rooms are lovely and as always, visit early for more space for your imagination. It’s in a beautiful part of the old town, nearby some of my favourite streets.
-The Memorium Nurembrug Trials are sombre, poignant and necessary for us to reflect: https://museums.nuernberg.de/memorium-nuremberg-trials/ It felt surreal when I was there. CourtRoom 600 where the trials took place was open and free that day, as sometimes it gets used. (* note, both this and Albrecht Durrer’s house are on a special card where you can pay 9 Euros for them and 5 other museums, or 6 Euros separately. Information at the reception desk of all places. For further information go to http://www.museen.nuernberg.de )
-The Castle. Great vistas from the top looking down on Nuremberg. I didn’t pay to go inside so can’t comment on that!
-I visited the area marked the Zirkelschmiedsgasse area- streets such as Mostgasse,Schehengasse and Pfeifergasse. All just 5 minutes from the Five Reasons Hostel incidentally and fairly close to the Hauptbahnhof. Built in the same age range as the castle- mid 11th century, so one of the oldest existing parts of the old town. I got the impression it’s an area that a lot of tourists don’t visit as I was alone and in bliss snapping away! This is a must see if you like tiny doors, cobbled streets and colourful buildings such as this one:
-Following on from this, keep WALKING!!! Inevitable and a must if you want to capture the many many beautiful houses and old areas still available. If you’re good at walking, covering the Altstadt or “Old Town” is easy. I walked and walked, and walked on repeat! Here’s where I absolutely loved and recommend:
1) Walk from Weisser Turm UB station past the BlackBean Café just behind the water fountain at Ludwig Platz (I stopped here for a kasekuchen and tea and it was delicious). If you’re looking at the BlackBean café, take a left to Josefplatz and continue down what I believe was Muhlgasse until you find the area of Unschlittplatz as mentioned. EPIC: my favourite part of the old city. 2) Linking on from this, the area of Karlstrasse and the area near Karlsbrucke (the bridge) is also a quaint and quieter area away from the Townhall or Rathaus area. There is a cafe here overlooking the river- I think it was called Kulmbacher. Didn’t try it, but in the morning it was so peaceful- heaving come afternoon. Walk on to Unschlittplatz as you have to walk over a wooden bridge which will gives you some epic sights either direction. This is in the area near the Hangman’s Bridge, just south of the river 3)As you walk up in the direction of the Castle or Albrecht Durrer’s house stop to enjoy the street of Oberekramersgasse on the way. I visited this street several times, I couldn’t get over the houses!
These little areas are fairly close together and if you get off at Weisser Turm UB station this all flows through nicely 🙂
-I didn’t want to leave Nuremberg without eating the infamous little sausages it’s known for (with sauerkraut) and I couldn’t leave Germany without stuffing myself with their cheesecake or Kasekuchen that I adore! For a gorgeous dish of the sausages, and waiters and waitresses in traditional Bavarian costumes, try the Bratwursthausle just by the Rathaus area: https://die-nuernberger-bratwurst.de/willkommen/
3) Other helpful tips
-Buy a 10 travel ticket multipack from the machines (which you can click to change to English) for around 12 Euros, a steal as each journey is 3.10 Euros and therefore makes sense if you are planning to stay for a few days. Otherwise- if staying in the Old Town throughout your stay (my Air Bnb was just outside) this might not be needed for you! You can walk in and around the Old Town easily enough.
-If in Air Bnb, try the shops Norma, Aldi, Lidl for cheap and good food buys. Water in these shops can be as little as 11 cents for a bottle!
-If needing to pick up extra toiletries try the stores DM and Muller is a bit like Superdrug or Boots (Pharmacy/chemist equivalent)- also at good prices
-Brezen Kolb are great for cheap and tasty filled breaded pretzels if looking to buy something out and quick and easy for lunch!
-Stay in the old town for the first night- it is a great way to orientate yourself to the city!
-Enjoy Konigstrasse in the evening for people watching, and an ice cream stop as a few Gelatria’s along here. I stopped at Dao’s, an Asian restaurant for a meal and it was gorgeous food- and very reasonable too!
-Look at the Flixbus to leave Nuremberg, if like me you are planning a trip out! https://www.flixbus.com/ It was 8 Euros, and 16 Euro return at the time of my booking for a 3 hour journey to Heidelberg. It cost 20 Euros on the train on a spur of the moment decision to visit a friend in Bamberg which was an hour away also- so also not too bad.
If you go, be sure to tell me if you tried and enjoyed any of these areas or trips!!