25 Essential places to see in Germany

We tell you 25 places to see in Germany for all tastes : cities, nature, towns and fairytale castles. It is very complicated to visit all the places in a single trip , since you would need many days. We have made several trips to Germany and there are always places pending!

Also Read: The 15 most beautiful countries in Europe

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Essential Places To See In Germany


Munich, our favorite city to see in Germany

Munich
The views from the church of San Pedro

Munich is a perfect combination of history and modernity. The Bavarian capital has a wonderful historic center. The number of beautiful buildings surrounding Marienplatz will leave you speechless. On the other hand, you can also get to know the industrial part of the city, famous for being the headquarters of the BMW car brand.

And we can’t forget that Munich is home to the famous Oktoberfest , a must for beer lovers. If your visit doesn’t coincide with this festival, you can always take a beer tasting tour of the city or visit the famous Hofbräuhaus tavern.


Neuschwanstein Castle, a magical place to see in Germany

Neuschwanstein Castle
The most famous castle to see in Germany

Near Munich there is a very special castle. To give you an idea, Walt Disney was inspired to create the famous Sleeping Beauty castle. It was built in 1869 for a king of Bavaria, who lived surrounded by an idyllic environment: mountains, lakes and the beautiful little town of Fussen at the foot of the castle. Neuschwanstein Castle has become an icon and is a must-see in Germany.

Going from Munich to Neuschwanstein Castle on your own by train is easy.


Nuremberg

It is an essential place to see in Germany for lovers of history. The famous Nuremberg Trials took place there to punish those responsible for all the crimes against humanity that were committed during the Second World War. Beyond this fact, at a tourist level it is also very interesting.

The historic part is inside the medieval walls , when the castle was also used to watch over the city. The center has very beautiful streets and squares full of history. In addition, they say that one of the best Christmas markets in Europe is held in Nuremberg.

Nuremberg can be reached very easily by public transport from all major German cities.


Zugspitze, the highest mountain to see in Germany

2962 meters, that is exactly the highest mountain in the country. At its top it seems like winter all year round, there is never a lack of snow. You can go sledding or ski on the slopes. Without a doubt, Zugspitze is a must see in Germany for lovers of nature and skiing..

It can be reached by taking a bus from Munich to Garmisch-Partenkirchen. From there, a rack railway leaves for the glacier at 2,600 meters. If you want to climb to the top you can take a cable car to enjoy incredible views of Germany, Austria , Switzerland and Italy.


Konigsee, a fairytale lake to see in Germany

Konigsee a fairytale lake
A natural paradise to see in Germany

Konigsee is a lake surrounded by fairytale scenery. It actually looks like a fjord , since it is elongated and has mountains on the sides. You cannot miss this natural wonder, which is touching Austria. Therefore, if you want to get there on your own, it is much easier to do it from Salzburg.

You can also book a day trip from Munich that includes a visit to one of the oldest salt mines in the area, as well as Konigsee.


Berlin and its history

The Brandenburg Gate
The Brandenburg Gate, icon of Berlin

Berlin is an essential city to see in Germany to understand the history of the country. The country’s capital was for almost 30 years divided into two parts. When the Berlin Wall finally came down in 1989, the city came to life. It has become a place full of life with its alternative shops, modern cafes and nightclubs that coexist with historical monuments that recall the sad past of the city.


Sachsenhausen and Dachau concentration camps

It’s a shame we have to include concentration camps in our list of places to see in Germany. But we believe that it is an essential visit to be aware of the atrocities committed by the Nazis and remember all the people who suffered from this terrible regime.

There are several concentration camps that can be visited in Germany. If you are going from Berlin, we recommend you to visit Sachsenhausen.

On the other hand, from Munich it is easier to get to Dachau. In both cases, we recommend that you visit with a guide to fully understand this dark part of German history.


Potsdam Palace, a fairytale place

Potsdam Palace
The incredible gardens of Potsdam Palace

Potsdam is one of the most majestic cities to see in Germany. Frederick II the Great, King of Prussia, was to blame. He had the Sanssouci Palace built as his summer residence in the 18th century. This rococo-style palace and its impressive gardens will leave you spellbound.

Potsdam is about 40 minutes by train from Berlin. Therefore, it is a perfect place to spend a day outside the capital.


The port of Hamburg and the spectacular Miniatur Wunderland

Hamburg is the second largest city in the country and, without a doubt, one of our favorite places to see in Germany. During the Middle Ages it began to be considered a gateway to the world thanks to its important port, which continues to function at full speed today.

Now the old port warehouses have become a very cool neighborhood to take a walk between the canals.

Next to the port is the Elbphilharmonie , an amazing building that is already an icon of the city. Also not to be missed is the fantastic Miniatur Wunderland museum of miniatures , it’s a great way to spend an afternoon on a bad day.


Schnoorviertel in Bremen, one of the most beautiful streets to see in Germany

Schnoorviertel in Bremen
A charming neighborhood to see in Germany

Bremen has two faces: the modern city and the medieval one. The district of Schoor , the historical center of Bremen, will make you feel like in a small town. It seems that time has not passed in its streets. The colorful facades are full of plants and flowers, creating a magical atmosphere. You can’t miss its fantastic market square either. There is a tribute to the Bremen Town Musicians , the endearing characters created by the Brothers Grimm.


Rothenburg ob der Tauber, a postcard town to see in Germany

A postcard town
A postcard town

If the medieval heart of Bremen has won you over, get ready to see Rothenburg ob der Tauber! There is a reason why it is the town that comes out representing Germany in thousands of postcards and travel agencies. The historic center is perfectly preserved, with its cobbled streets and the traditional houses of the region.

The most practical way to get there is to rent a car or book a tour from Munich. Visiting it by public transport is a bit complicated. It is an isolated town, you have to make at least two transfers and the trip takes more than 3 hours.


Bamberg, another medieval jewel to see in Germany

We continue in Bavaria to talk about Bamberg, a city that is considered a World Heritage Site. It is known by the nickname of ” Franconian Rome ” because it was built on 7 hills , just like the eternal city. But it also has an air of Venice thanks to the canals that criss-cross its narrow medieval streets.

It can be reached directly by train from Nuremberg in about 45 minutes.


Heidelberg and its castle

Heidelberg
The beautiful city of Heidelberg

Another lovely place to see in Germany is Heidelberg. Its location on the banks of the Neckar River is perfect. You cannot miss the view of the bridge that connects the two parts of the city and the castle on top of the hill. In addition to a very picturesque atmosphere , Heidelberg has the oldest university in Germany and that is why there is usually a lot of life in its streets.

The city is right between Stuttgart and Frankfurt, so it ‘s easy to get to by public transport. Just take a train to Mannheim and change trains there until you reach Heidelberg. If you prefer, you can book a tour from Frankfurt.


Freiburg and the Black Forest

Freiburg
Freiburg, the gateway to the Black Forest

A magical place to see in Germany is the Black Forest. Its mountains with lush forests, waterfalls and old wooden houses are a perfect place for hiking. You just have to be careful not to run into Little Red Riding Hood or the wolf, because the place is like a fairy tale! As a gateway to this wonder of nature is the city of Freiburg. The center is full of small canals and has an impressive cathedral.


Baden-Baden, a thermal town to disconnect

Among so many mountains you will find Baden-Baden, a spa town. It has various spas where you can forget the world for a few hours. Its colorful facades, boutique shops and café terraces in summer give the impression of being in a French village. And it is that Baden-Baden is really very close to the border.

If you have time, you can take the opportunity to rent a car and take a route through Alsace.


Europa-Park , the perfect place to have fun

Did you know that Germany has one of the largest amusement parks in Europe? It’s called Europa-Park and it’s set in different parts of the old continent. The enclosure is very close to Baden-Baden and has more than 70 different attractions. Ideal to spend a fun day!


Frankfurt, one of the most interesting cities to see in Germany

Frankfurt has been of great importance since the Middle Ages thanks to its location, practically in the center of the country. It is considered the most international face of Germany and its financial center , with a skyline full of skyscrapers. But it also retains part of its origins in the beautiful buildings of the old town.


Lake Constance, a natural beauty between three countries

Lake Constance is at the foot of the Alps, in a privileged setting. It is touching three countries: Germany, Switzerland and Austria. In the middle of its greenish waters there are three islands that still make this landscape a more special place. If you like quiet places and nature, Lake Constance is an essential place to see in Germany.


Hohenzollern Castle, a historical treasure to see in Germany

Hohenzollern Castle
A majestic castle to see in Germany

The Hohenzollern dynasty ruled much of the country from the Middle Ages until the early 20th century. With so many years in power, it is not surprising that they have this piece of castle in neo-Gothic style. There have actually been three castles on this site and the current one was completed in 1867. It is on top of Mount Zoller and has great views.

The easiest way to get there is by car. But you can also take a train from Stuttgart to Hechingen and from there a bus to the castle.


Cochem, another dream place to see in Germany

West Germany is full of very special towns and cities. And Cochem is one more. This medieval town in the Moselle valley is super picturesque. On the banks of the river a lot of colorful facades are gathered. And on top of a hill the castle of Cochem watches over the city.

If you want to have a special view of the city and its surroundings, you can take a boat trip on the Moselle River.


Burg Eltz, another castle worthy of Disney

Burg Eltz, another castle worthy of Disney
Another fairytale castle to see in Germany

Another essential castle to see in Germany is Burg Eltz , for many the most beautiful in the country. It is a practically intact medieval fortress. The atmosphere is idyllic, surrounded by green. The views from the walkway that leads to the castle entrance are like something out of a movie.

The best way to get there is to have a rental car. Otherwise, you can get there with bus 330 on weekends and holidays between May and October. The bus leaves from the Treis-Karden train station.


Cologne and its imposing cathedral

Cologne Cathedral on the Rhine
Cologne Cathedral on the Rhine

The main attraction of the city is the majestic cathedral. To give you an idea, it was the tallest building in the world for 4 years since it opened in 1880. Fortunately, it survived multiple bombings during the war and remains the icon of the city.


Dusseldorf, one of the most modern cities to see in Germany

Dusseldorf is one of the most modern cities in the country. One such example is Mediahafen, a former industrial area that now boasts Frank Gehry buildings. On the banks of the Rhine there is a long promenade with many bars where you can try authentic German beer. Do not forget to visit its historic center , although it may not have as much fame as other cities, it does not lack charming corners.


Dresden, a great cultural center to see in Germany

Dresden
A beautiful sunset in Dresden

Dresden was one of the places most affected by the bombing of World War II. Much of its historical heritage had to be rebuilt, but fortunately it retains its charm. Dresden is a great cultural center , as it has many theaters, orchestras and museums.

During the 18th century it was one of the favorite places for royalty. You can check it by visiting the majestic palaces, fountains and churches.


Saxon Switzerland National Park

To end our list of essential places to see in Germany, we suggest a beautiful national park. Touching the border with the Czech Republic you will find the Saxon Switzerland, a natural wonder. There are hundreds of rock formations created over thousands of years that delight climbers. If you have never tried it, you can learn at a climbing school in the area or enjoy the landscape hiking.


Map With The Best Places To See In Germany

Map With The Best Places To See In Germany
Map With The Best Places To See In Germany

On the map you will find the location of all the places to see in Germany that we recommend below. This way you can create your route in a much easier way. To move around Germany you can rent a car or opt for public transport. The Flixbus company is German and has many routes with very cheap prices.

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