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20 Best Places to Visit in Germany

Germany is in the heart of Europe and is a popular tourist destination. After all, it has the most powerful economy on the continent. However, Germany is more known for its turbulent history, specifically World War II. Also, there is a division between East Germany and West Germany with the Iron Curtain. Aside from that, its history includes the fall of the Berlin Wall.

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With its natural beauty, culture, and history, it is not surprising why Germany is a popular destination in Europe. Most of the tourist hotspots are in Bavaria in Southern Germany. Aside from admiring the Bavarian Alps, there is also the well-known Oktoberfest too. Also, the medieval towns are quite charming and worth visiting too. Make your way to Northern Germany where you will come across their beaches as well as old port towns dating back to the Hanseatic period. 

Afterward, travel to Berlin for its huge museums and club. You can also make your way to Frankfurt if you want to immerse yourself in the cityscape. If you are planning on a German tour, you should make a list of the tourist attractions you want to see. 

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The Best Places to See on a Tour of Germany

Germany boasts a little of everything to its guests. From the natural landscapes of the Rhine to the Mosel rivers, to the gorgeous coastline of Lake Constance, you will be spoiled for choices. Let’s take a look at popular attractions that you should not miss.  

#1 Berlin

Aside from being the largest city in Germany, Berlin is also its capital. If you are staying in the country for a week, it is always a good idea to spend some days here. After all, this is a vibrant city and a top cultural destination too. In fact, there are dozens of art galleries and museums here that you should visit. You can start at the Museum Island where the best museums are. Do check out the East Side Gallery as well. This is where you will find the longest surviving section of the Berlin Wall. 

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Afterward, you can head to the Mitte District where you will find the Brandenburg Gate. Other historic buildings to see here are the Holocaust Memorial and Reichstag.

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If you are looking for a less crowded place to explore, make your way to Charlottenburg. There are plenty of gardens and public parks here that you can check including the Zoological Garden. Of course, you should check out the beer gardens like the Luftgarten. 

#2 Medieval Rothenburg

If you are looking for the perfect spot to fully appreciate the wonders of Germany, this is it. The old town of Rothenburg ob der Tauber lies in the heart of Bavaria. Aside from being close to major cities, there are plenty of amazing photo opportunities here too.

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Rothenburg managed to escape the effects of the war which is why there is plenty of medieval architecture still standing here. One of these is the old Town Hall. Which remained the same since the 13th century. Another is the Imperial City Museum. Which is an old convent including the historic Castle Gardens. 

It is always a good idea to spend a few days in the medieval town center. This way, you will be close to the Old Town Walls. Which you can visit once the crowd has disappeared. It will take at least half an hour to explore the area. The spectacular views of the old town are worth stopping for. 

#3 The Romantic Rhine

Bavaria’s capital, Munich, is one of the largest cities in the country. Thanks to its location on the outer edges of the Bavarian Alps, it has become a popular tourist attraction. Although it is not one of the oldest cities in the country. It is still known for its arts and trades.

The Deutsches Museum is a good spot to learn about its history. Also, there are several churches here that are worth looking into. Among these is Peterskirche, which was built in the 1300s. Frauenkirche, the iconic cathedral, and Michaelskirche, both were important Renaissance buildings

Aside from that, another reason why this is a popular spot for tourists is its historic city center. You can go on a walking tour around the Marienplatz. Which is a large open square. Here you will find plenty of old architecture. They all date back to medieval times like the New Town Hall and the old one. Do check out the parks as well as green spaces here. The most popular is the Englischer Garten or the English Garden. Also, make your way to the Nymphenburg Palace in Munich’s western district. 

#4 Fussen

Fussen is quite the scenic spot as it lies on the foot of the Alps. This is the last stop on the Romantic Road. And just a kilometer from the Austrian border. Although the charming town is a tourist attraction in itself, it is the fairytale castles that draw the crowd. Yes, the Hohes Schloss and Hohenschwangau are quite impressive as they rise among the hilltops.

However, it is the Neuschwanstein Castle that is the most popular of them all. It was commissioned by King Ludwig II as a royal retreat. And because of its magical appearance, the Sleeping Beauty Castle of Walt Disney was patterned after it. 

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Fussen’s old town has been preserved over the decades. It boasts pretty pastel-colored buildings as well as the 9th century St. Mang’s Abbey. Aside from that, tourists can take advantage of the hiking trails nearby that will take them over the hills and mountains. This will give them a great view of the town below. 

#5 Cologne 

Cologne was almost destroyed during the Second World War. However, it has managed to survive and is now a thriving metropolis. Located on the Rhine River, there are several tourist attractions here that you don’t want to miss. Asie from that, the nightlife as well as the arts and culture scenes draw the crowd here. 

One of the main attractions here is the Cologne Cathedral. They said that this Gothic church contains the gifts of the Magi that were written in the Bible. Aside from that, the Twelve Romanesque Churches are some of the best examples of medieval architecture in the country. You should check out the Carnival festivals held here each year. After all, this has been attracting thousands of travelers from all over the world. 

#6 Baden-Baden and the Black Forest

Germany’s Baden-Baden is their spa capital thanks to its hot springs and mild climate. This charming town lies in the heart of the Black Forest.  And has since been where the rich spend their vacation. Fortunately, everyone can now visit this spa town. And enjoy the unique experiences of natural spa treatments. In fact, this is one place you should add to your itinerary in Germany. 

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Your trip to this town will not be complete without actually paddling. Or plunging into one of their spas. In fact, your first stop should be at the well-known Spa Garden called Kurgarten. This has always been the cultural center of the town and has seen its fair share of tourists.

Here you will find boutiques, restaurants, and other shopping areas. Aside from that, it is also here where they host special events and festivals like Christmas Markets. In addition, its location near the Black Forest has been attracting the crowd during the summer months. Tourists and locals visit here because of the hiking trails that take them around the winding forest. 

#7 Koblenz & The Rhine Valley 

Cruise ship passengers traveling down the Rhine will soon dock at Koblenz. That said, make sure that your first stop is at the Deutsches Eck, also known as the German Corner. One of the reasons why it is a great spot is that it is here where the River Rhine and the Mosel River meet. It is also here where you will spot the impressive statue of King Wilhelm I standing tall. Another way to appreciate the beauty of this natural phenomenon is by riding a cable car up the Ehrenbreitstein Fortress

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Aside from that, Koblenz is the perfect jump-off point for exploring the beautiful Rhine Valley. In fact, the Middle Rhine Valley, or the Rhine Gorge, is one of the most important features in the country. This is why the river valley has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is not surprising that you’ll think that the landscape came straight from the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm. 

#8 Leipzig

Another option to add to your itinerary in Germany in Leipzig. Known for its traditional fairs and markets, Leipzig enjoys being the center of trade and commerce. It is not surprising that it has become one of the leading areas for arts and culture. In fact, its living legacy continues to this day, especially with the well-known German National Library. Locals and tourists alike drop by here to see the cultural and musical heritage in the area.  You should take advantage of the walking tours here to fully appreciate its grandeur. 

In fact, you should add the Battle of the Nations Monument to your list of places to see. It was built in 1913 to commemorate the defeat of Napoleon a century before. In addition, there is also the Old City Hall which locals visit for its historic Market area. 

#9 Nuremberg

Nuremberg is one of the best places to visit in Germany. This medieval Old Town area underwent reconstruction after World War II. Fortunately, the local government thought it better to recapture the former glory of the area. The effect was quite stunning, to say the least.

In fact, history buffs will enjoy walking around the five-kilometer (5.4 yards) stretch of the city walls. You should start from the west side of the town. And climb towers to see some spectacular views. Aside from that, it is also the unofficial capital of the Holy Roman Empire

Best Germany vacationsAfterward, make your way to Nuremberg Castle which has been standing since the 11th century. This impressive castle houses medieval structures that are worth exploring on foot. Of course, the museums here display artifacts that showcase the history of Nuremberg. Don’t worry if you get hungry while exploring. There are several restaurants and cafes here to choose from. Aside from that, there are boutiques here too where you can grab some souvenirs. 

#10 Hamburg: The Gateway to Germany 

If you are looking forward to experiencing the hospitality of Germany, visit Hamburg. This is the second-largest city on the River Elbe. And is just a short distance from the North Sea. Aside from that, this is an important trade route. Drop by here any time of day and you will see plenty of vessels traveling here. This includes cruise ships where passengers disembark in this stunning city. 

That said, the first place that you should head out to is the Port of Hamburg. It is a 100-square-kilometer (38 miles) area known for its well-preserved Old Warehouse District. Today, these storage buildings house everything from entertainment venues to museums to art galleries.

In fact, you should visit the International Maritime Museum. Aside from that, take a peek at the historic sailing vessels nearby. Also, the concert halls of Hamburg are among the tourist hotspots here and are worth visiting too.

#11 Dresden

Dresden is a good starting point for those who want to explore not only the eastern part of Germany but Eastern Europe as well. This is true since it is just a few miles away from the border of the Czech Republic. The Old Saxon kings grew the land but its magnificent city centre was destroyed during WWII. Fortunately, Germany rebuilt Dresden and is now one of the country’s entertainment and cultural hubs. 

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In fact, one of its main attractions is the Frauenkirche. It was built in 1743 with its Baroque architecture and stunning locals and tourists alike. However, it was not spared from the war. The locals cataloged every part of it and were able to rebuild it to its former glory.

Aside from this impressive cathedral, the main square was also carefully reconstructed. Take a walk among the museums and art galleries here to appreciate how the city restored itself from the ruins. If you are looking for royal palaces, you will find one here. The Dresden Palace is a stunning structure that you should see for yourself. 

#12 Dusseldorf

Dusseldorf has always been recognized as one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the country. Aside from that, it is also known for being home to some of the best universities in Germany. Combine that with its trendy and young vibe and it will not be surprising to see why many flocks here. Its main attraction is the historic Old Town or Altstadt. Walk around the Marketplatz and the Town Hall if you like. Afterward, make your way down to the Parisian-like avenues and boulevards. This is a great place to reward yourself with a shopping spree. 

Aside from that, Dusseldorf is also home to several green places. Among these are the Hofgarten and the Nordpark. The latter houses a Japanese Garden that you’ll want to explore. You will need a sturdy pair of walking shoes for these two parks as they occupy a large space. That said, you can end your walking tour at the Rhine Embankment Promenade.

#13 Bamberg

Bamberg is one of the most attractive towns that you will find in Germany. It was built over majestic hills with several canals as well as the Reignitz River running through it. In addition, it was once the seat of the Holy Roman Empire and as such, Bamberg was swimming in riches and architectural marvels. This means that there are plenty of sights to see here. 

In fact, the medieval streets of Altstadt are worth exploring. Among the sights that you will see here are a Romanesque cathedral as well as a Rathaus. Aside from that, you should also check the Altenburg Castle and the Michaelsberg Abbey. What makes Bamberg one of the beautiful places to add to your itinerary is the abundance of restaurants, cafes, and bars. 

#14 Regensburg

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If you want to immerse yourself in local culture, you should head to Regensburg. Aside from being one of the oldest towns in Germany, it is also one of the hotspots too. This is not surprising as the town itself was founded by the Romans back in 179 AD. With more than two thousand years of history, this is one of the most preserved medieval towns in the country.

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In fact, you will not run out of architectural wonders to see here. From churches to monasteries to chapels, you should spend your free time here. In fact, the stunning Gothic Cathedral, as well as the Stone Bridge, are two of the best sights here. 

#15 Lake Constance

Lake Constance is the third-largest lake in Central Europe. It lies in the foothills of the Alps that straddles the borders of Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. What makes this place worth visiting is its crystal clear waters. Combine this with its mild and sunny climate and you have the perfect spot to swim around. Aside from that, there are other outdoor activities that can be done here too. Think hiking, cycling, and just walking around the vineyards and orchards. 

Aside from that, Lake Constance is also home to charming towns and villages. Visit the Konstanz on the German side or the Santis Mountain on the Swiss side. You can also make your way to Austria where the Bregenz can be found. It is famous for its floating stage where they perform the opera as well as plays. 

#16 Frankfurt

Frankfurt is one of the major towns in Germany and with good reason. Aside from being an independent city-state, it is also home to old buildings and attractions. In fact, this is the perfect spot to spend your weekend with the number of activities that you can do here. Situated on the River Main, there is evidence of its historic past as a trading center. Among the highlights here is Romerberg. Which is the city square. It is pedestrian-friendly and has plenty of medieval townhomes, cafes, and restaurants too. 

#17 Bonn

For tourists who are a fan of classical music, you should make your way to Bonn. This was once the capital of Germany. However, it is best known for being the birthplace of Beethoven. Tourists make their way to the Beethoven-Haus. Where they can see the beautiful home of the classical musician. Aside from that, it houses the largest collection of Beethoven artifacts. 

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Of course, there is more to Bonn than the house of the legendary musician. In fact, you should visit the Schloss Drachenburg. Which is a stunning structure that towers above the city. There is also the Kunstmuseum Bonn, which is a contemporary art museum

#18 Lubeck 

At first glance, Lubeck may just be an ordinary mid-sized city in Germany. However, this northern destination is more than that. In fact, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987.

Lubeck was considered to be an important trading port between the 12th and 16th centuries. Even today, it still plays a role in maritime commerce. Mostly because of its location in the Baltic Sea. It is best to check Lubeck’s charming old town on foot or go on a boat tour. Both of which are sure to give you a good view of its beauty.

#19 Berchtesgaden 

One of the best things that you can do in Germany is to head to Berchtesgaden. This town sits next to the Austrian border. And boasts of rolling hills and deep valleys. Aside from that, the Alpine lake and river add to its old-world charm too.

It is best to drive up here with a rental car to enjoy the scenic view. The Rossfeld Panoramastrasse is the best place to start. Then head to the Eagle’s Nest. This beer garden was the rest house of Adolf Hitler. For those who want to ski in the mountains, the best time to visit is during winter when the snow has fallen. 

#20 Munich 

Bavaria’s capital, Munich, is one of the largest cities in the country. Thanks to its location on the outer edges of the Bavarian Alps, it has become a popular tourist attraction. Although it is not one of the oldest cities in the country. It is still known for its arts and trades. 

The Deutsches Museum is a good spot to learn about its history. Also, there are several churches here that are worth looking into. Among these are Peterskirche, which was built in the 1300s, Frauenkirche, the iconic cathedral, and Michaelskirche, which was one of the important Renaissance buildings. 

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Aside from that, another reason why this is a popular spot for tourists is its historic city center. You can go on a walking tour around the Marienplatz. Which is a large open square. Here you will find plenty of old architecture that dates back to medieval times. Things like the New Town Hall and the old one. Do check out the parks as well as green spaces here. The most popular is the Englischer Garten or the English Garden. Also, make your way to the Nymphenburg Palace in Munich’s western district.

Additional Places to Check Out in Germany

There are other attractions that you can check out when visiting Germany. In fact, you should add the Harz Mountains National Park to your agenda. If you are a fan of the Middle Ages, castles, and fairy tales, this is the place to be. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is best explored with a travel director so you don’t miss out on its important bits.

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Wrap Up Germany’s 20 best Vacation spots

Exploring Germany is one of the best experiences that you will have in Europe. Their transportation system here is ideal for visiting towns. For starters, you can check the Deutsche Bahn which operates the train station here to know their schedules and destinations. This way, you can choose your travel dates to the destinations mentioned above. Of course, you should also consider booking a private tour in some of these places for a more intimate experience. 

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