Looking to visit some famous landmarks in Germany? Then you’ve come to the right place. Known as the land of beer, sausages, and fairytale castles, Germany is a country that should be on your European bucket list.
Filled with a rich history, culture, and incredible music festivals, Germany is one of the most exciting countries in Western Europe. Home to castles, lakes, mountains, medieval towns, and modern cities, Germany also has a wealth of landmarks to discover.
From its capital Berlin, all the way down to Munich in the state of Bavaria, these incredible landmarks are dotted all over the country.
Exploring some of Germany’s famous landmarks is a great way to travel back in time and gain insight into the events that made it the great nation it is today.
1) Brandenburg Gate
Kicking off the list of famous German landmarks is the iconic Brandenburg Gate. It is one of the most instantly recognizable landmarks in Germany in the western part of Berlin.
The Brandenburg Gate is an 18th-century neoclassical monument inspired by the Acropolis in Athens. It was built by the Prussian King Frederick William II during the Batavian Revolution.
This stunning sandstone monument is a staggering 66-feet (20 meters) tall and is made up of 12 Doric columns with five portals. It is intricately decorated with reliefs and sculptures. The most well-known sculpture on the gate is the Greek Quadriga, which symbolizes victory.
The gate was once a symbol of division in Germany during the Cold War, but now serves as a symbol of peace and unity in the city.
Brandenburg Gate is a truly marvelous sight and attracts thousands of visitors each year. While it is a pretty spectacular sight during the day, it really becomes a sight to hold once the sun sets and it is illuminated.
2) Cologne Cathedral
The Cologne Cathedral is one of the most impressive landmarks of Germany. It soars a whopping 516-feet (157 meters) into the sky and has been a prominent feature in Cologne’s skyline for centuries. It is also the second tallest church in Europe.
It is an outstanding example of Gothic architecture and has served as a symbol for German Catholicism for centuries. It was originally built in 1248 and took more than 600 years to complete. It was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996.
During World War II, it was bombed 14 times but managed to survive and has been restored numerous times throughout the years. It is one of the largest churches in Germany and is able to house around 20,000 people.
While the exterior of the Cologne Cathedral is pretty impressive, it’s the interior that will take your breath away. The church has five aisles with breathtaking ceilings. There are delicately designed arches with beautiful stained glass windows and artwork.
There’s also an impressive spiral staircase with over 500 steps. While walking up all those stairs may sound like a real pain, those brave enough to take on the challenge will be led onto a view platform with rewarding views of the city.
It is with little wonder then that this is one of the most famous buildings in Germany and is totally worth the visit.
3) Eltz Castle
At first glance, the Eltz Castle looks like something that came straight out of a children’s fairytale. This medieval castle is nestled in the hillside of the Moselle Valley, in between the cities of Koblenz and Trier.
Eltz Castle, also known as Burg Eltz is one the most picturesque castles in Europe and has been owned by the Eltz family since the 12th century. Its history dates back before this though, and it is believed that construction on the castle began as early as the 9th century.
The castle is a mixture of Romanesque and Baroque architectural styles and is surrounded by a lush green forest. Eltz is a fantastic location to take pictures at any time of the year.
As seasons change, the trees around the castle change color and it’s common to see orange leaves in autumn and pink leaves in spring. As winter approaches, the trees are filled and surrounded with pure white snow, before turning back to a vibrant green in summer.
If you’re looking for a real adventure, there are numerous hiking trails that lead up to the castle and provide some incredibly scenic views of the Eltz Castle and surrounding area. A hike up to the castle will definitely make your time in Germany memorable.
4) Bastei Bridge
Location: Saxon Switzerland National Park
The Bastei Bridge is a 200-year-old sandstone bridge situated in the awe-inspiring Bastei rock formations, near the city of Dresden. The bridge is not only surrounded by rock formations, but also by a scenic valley and forest.
It is situated 636 feet (194 meters) above the Elbe River, within the Saxon Switzerland National Park near Germany’s border with the Czech Republic. It is the park’s most popular attraction and is one of the most popular day trips in Germany.
The Bastei Bridge was originally built in 1824 as a wooden bridge and was later replaced in 1851 by the current sandstone one.
The bridge can be accessed all year round and is the perfect lookout point for some fantastic views of the Elbe Sandstone Mountains and the river below it.
5) Nymphenburg Palace
One of the most iconic German landmarks is the gorgeous Nymphenburg Palace. Together with the Nymphenburg Palace Park, it is one of the most beautiful royal palace complexes in Europe.
The palace was commissioned in 1664 by Elector Ferdinand Maria and Henriette Adelaide and was completed in 1675. Over the years it has served as the residence for the rulers of the Bavaria district.
Nymphenburg was designed by Italian architect Agostino Barelli and has undergone various changes and expansions over the centuries. The palace is as much an artistic masterpiece as it is an architectural one.It was heavily influenced by the French, and its grand garden design resembles the gardens at the Palace of Versailles. There’s also a room known as the Gallery of Beauties with 36 portraits of beautiful women from all classes of society which was commissioned by King Ludwig I.
Nymphenburg also has a sublime stable museum where you can check out a range of carriages and sleighs that were once used to transport the nobility of Bavaria.
The palace is astoundingly beautiful and diverse, and a visit here definitely makes it one of the top things to do in Munich.
6) The Mercedes Benz Museum
If you’re a car enthusiast, then you’ll definitely enjoy a trip to the Mercedes Benz Museum in Stuttgart.
The museum is spread across nine levels covering a floor space of around 177 604 square feet (16,500 square meters). It has 1,500 exhibits, some of which display Mercedes’ top car models.
Through the exhibits, you’ll be able to take a step back and trace Mercedes automotive history. The museum celebrates the brand’s many accomplishments from the first patented car designed by Karl Benz in 1886, to the first hydrogen-powered car of our century.
There are over 160 types of vehicles on display that range from the oldest car to timeless racing cars and futurist research vehicles.
While the exhibits are pretty impressive, the exterior design of the Mercedes Benz Museum has helped it to make a name for itself as one of Germany’s most iconic landmarks. With 1,800 triangular window panes and a 108-foot (33 meter) ceiling, it is truly something special.
7) The Porsche Museum
Another car museum worth checking out is the Porsche Museum, which is also located in Stuttgart. Opened in 2009, it is a striking building constructed from steel and concrete.
The Porsche Museum also traces back this luxury car brand’s heritage. There are almost 100 different types of models including the Porsche 356 and the world-renowned Porsche 911. There are also 200 small exhibits to discover.
The museum also allows visitors to combine their visit with a factory tour where you can catch a glimpse of how these stunning cars are made.
8) Berlin TV Tower
One of the best German landmarks that you should visit is the wonderful Berlin TV Tower. The tower is a whopping 1,197-feet (365 meters) tall and overlooks the capital. It was opened in 1969 and was designed to display the power of the communists in East Germany.
Today it is one of the most instantly recognizable landmarks in the country and is a popular hangout for both locals and tourists. Its observation deck sits 666 feet (203 meters) above Berlin and offers unique, uninterrupted views of the city.
It also has a revolving restaurant that takes diners on a culinary journey of Berlin’s history over a 50 year period.
9) Monument to the Battle of the Nations
The city of Leipzig is well known for being an industrial and cultural hub, but it is perhaps best known for the Monument to the Battle of the Nations.
In October 1813, Austria, Germany, Russia, and Sweden’s armies combined forces to defeat Napoleon’s French army after his invasion of Germany. It is one of the oldest monuments in Germany and was erected in 1913 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the event.
The monument is made from granite and concrete and stands at 300 feet (91 meters) high near the command post of Napoleon. At its base, there is the Forum 1813 Museum which has displays the history of the battle, weapons, and other memorabilia.
10) Mount Zugspitze
Mount Zugspitze is one of the most amazing natural landmarks in Germany. It is part of the Wettersteigebirge in the Bavarian Alps that extends along the Austria-Germany border.
It is situated 9,718-feet (2,962 meters) above sea level and is reached by a cableway that was first built in the early 1920s in the village of Eibsee.
The mountain receives snow for about six months of the year, making it one of Germany’s premier destinations for winter sports like skiing and snowboarding. Mount Zugspitze is known for having some of the most incredible scenery of the surrounding area.
11) Lake Constance
Lake Constance, also known as Lake Bodensee, is one of the prettiest lakes in Germany. It sits at the northern foot of the Alps on the border of Austria and Switzerland. More than half of its 167-mile (270 km) shoreline is located in Germany.
The lake has a number of towns and cities around it making it a popular vacation hangout, especially during summer. Its close proximity to Austria and Switzerland also makes it one of the best places to take a day trip, as there are numerous attractions around the lake.
12) The Romer
The Romer is one of the most famous places in Germany. This medieval building is located opposite the Old St. Nicholas Church and has served as the city hall of Frankfurt for over 600 years.
It is made up of three houses that feature neo-Gothic architecture and is one of the most beautiful buildings in Frankfurt’s city center.
The Romer hosts the Mayor’s office, civil registration office, tourist information center, and Emperors Hall. The Emperor’s Hall is one of the most beautiful rooms in the building, as it is where Germany’s former leaders would celebrate after their coronations.
Around the building, you’ll be able to wander around Romer Square where you’ll find quirky stalls and shops.
13) Geierlay Suspension Bridge
Opened in 2015, the Geierlay Suspension Bridge is one of the newest landmarks to leave its mark on Germany. It is located in the low mountain range of Hunsruck in western Germany. The bridge sits 330 feet (100 meters) above the ground and is nestled in between the towns of Morsdorf and Sosberg.
It is the longest suspension bridge in Germany and spans a length of 1,180 feet (360 meters). It travels along the Saar-Hunsruck-Steig Walking trail and has stunning views of the picturesque forest that surrounds it.
The best part is that it is completely free to walk the bridge, and you can take some amazing pictures of the area.
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