Nuremberg to the Bavarian Alps

Posted on October 23, 2010 by Holly Hayes
Part of: UK and Western Europe

Our three nights in Nuremberg were very enjoyable. It was nice to have two full days in one place and not too many sights to cover - we kept busy both days, but actually got to relax a bit, too. We needed that! It was seriously cold throughout our stay, getting below freezing at night and windy during the day, but we did have some sunshine occasionally, too.

Nuremberg is a fairly big city north of Munich, in the Franconia region of Bavaria. Its large historic center is surrounded by a stone wall with many round towers and a castle at the highest point. It is known for nice things like toymaking, gingerbread, tasty little sausages (Nürnberger Wurst) and Albrecht Dürer, and less happy things like being a major center of operations and Nazi propaganda under Hitler and the site of the Nuremberg Trials after the war. Here are a few highlights.

City view from the castle

Castle from Old Town

Inside the castle, with Romanesque imperial chapel on left

Hauptmarkt, with beautiful fresh produce

The current seasonal special: chanterelle mushrooms (pfifferlings, shortened here to "pfiffer"), which appeared on just about every restaurant chalkboard in Bavaria

Half-timbered buildings on Weissgerbergasse

Albrecht Durer's house (early 1500s)

Albrecht Durer's kitchen

St Lorenzkirche

Closer view of rose window

St Sebalduskirche

Giant dill pickle from the fish festival

David with old postal bus

Our hotel's parking garage had a car elevator - a new one to us!

This morning on our way out of Nuremberg we visited the Nazi Party Rally Grounds, which are just outside the city. The site includes the unfinished Kongresshalle, which was intended by Hitler to resemble (and surpass) the Roman Colosseum. It now contains a very good museum with a lot of historical photos (some very hard to look at), although the signs were only in German. Audio guides provide info in various languages, though, and David listened to a few entries and gave me the highlights.

Aerial view of the Kongresshalle, now a museum

Exterior, with modern entrance to museum

One of several huge Nazi Party rallies that took place here

Nuremberg propaganda

Temporary exhibition representing the trains leading to concentration camps

Cards with names of Holocaust victims

On a brighter note, we then headed south past Munich, on an especially nice Autobahn, and soon were heading into the Alps. They appeared out of nowhere when we weren't expecting them and were an amazing sight, as always.

First glimpse of the Alps

In the foothills of the Bavarian Alps, we stopped at Ettal Monastery. It was originally founded in the 14th century by a Holy Roman Emperor to house a miraculous statue. There was snow on the ground, which was pretty fun to crunch through, but the roads were clear and dry. The monastery is in the Baroque style, which neither of us care for too much, but it was pretty impressive.

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And less than a half-hour later, we were across the border into Austria. See the next post for a few pics from our first evening in Innsbruck.