City walk

ERFURT

Erfurt is the capital of Thuringia and with its medieval city centre it is rightly one of the most attractive cities in Germany.
For the perfect day exploring the city, here are our highlights for a city walk in Erfurt with everything you should definitely see and do.

We wish you much pleasure!

1 Petersberg Citadel

2 Erfurt Cathedral

3 St. Severie Catholic Church

4 House to the Sonneborn

5 City Hall

6 Tourist information

7 Old Synagogue

8 Krämerbrücke

9 Ägidienkirche

10 Little insulation

11 Protestant Augustinian Monastery

Petersberg

Ideally, you can start your Erfurt tour at Petersberg. There is a large multi-storey car park at the foot of the Petersberg. 

The Petersberg is home to the Citadel, built in 1665 - Europe's only baroque city fortress that is still largely intact.

The Romanesque Peterskirche is also located on the Petersberg. For centuries, its towers dominated Erfurt's cityscape before the church burnt out after an attack by the French in 1813. Today, art exhibitions are held in the Peterskirche.

Spannend ist hier auch das Tunnelsystem welches sich von hier durch Teile der Altstadt erstreckt. Diese “Horchgänge” der Petersberg Festung können in einer Funzelführung erkundet werden.

The highlight on the Petersberg is the view of the city and offers a great foretaste of further exploration. From countless places here you have a great view over the old town of Erfurt to the surrounding countryside.

Cathedral & Severie Church

St. Mary's Cathedral is Erfurt's oldest and most important church building. It is located next to the Severi Church on the Domberg. The ensemble of the two churches towering over the old town is truly impressive and is the city's landmark.

The cathedral's origins can be dated back to the 8th century, and the medieval stained glass windows in the high choir, the high altar and also the Gothic choir stalls are particularly impressive. The cathedral is also home to the Gloriosa, the largest free-swinging medieval bell in the world.

Right next to the cathedral is the Severi Church with its three spires. It, too, is one of the most important Gothic buildings in Germany and well worth a visit.

Tip: There is always a weekly market on Domplatz in the mornings. Here you can stroll wonderfully between the stalls and find one or two delicacies.

 

House to the Sonneborn

In der Großen Arche, einer alten Gasse, welche parallel zum Erfurter Domplatz verläuft, steht eines der schönsten und ältesten Häuser der Stadt. Nicht selten  finden man hier Blütenblätter vor dem Eingang, denn seit 1988 dient das Gebäude uns Erfurtern als Standesamt. Das „Haus zum Sonneborn” stammt aus der Zeit der Renaissance. Es wird vermutet, dass das Haus einst als Waidspeicher diente.
Anfang der 80er Jahre allerdings war es so marode, dass man seinen Abriss erwog. Im Zuge der Restaurierung konnte glücklicherweise das prächtige Renaissanceportal und Teile des Fachwerkes erhalten werden, wie auch die beiden Sgraffitis, auf denen Schönheit und Gerechtigkeit dargestellt sind. Das Haus ist leider nicht für Besichtigungen offen, bietet aber ein tolles Fotomotiv.
 

Tip: Just around the corner is Cafe Flo, perhaps the smallest café in town and our insider tip for the most delicious waffles and crepes.

City Hall

The town hall is located in one of the city's most remarkable squares, the fish market.

The neo-Gothic building is the seat of the administration and the centre of political power in Erfurt. It is also used for concerts, receptions and celebrations and is open for visiting tourists. 

The complex, consisting of numerous buildings, has grown over centuries. The oldest buildings belong to the 13th century. The main parts of the present town hall were built between 1870 and 1875. The complex was closed with the construction of the south building in 1934/35.

Worth seeing in the town hall are the murals in the corridors and stairways by Eduard Kämpffer (1859 - 1926), the painting of the banqueting hall from 1878 to 1882 by Peter Janssen, ceiling paintings, spandrels (portraits) and sculptures in the banqueting hall.

 

Old Synagogue

Our walk in the old town takes us through Waagegasse. Here you can literally feel the Middle Ages. Half-timbered houses from this period line the narrow alley.

This is also where the Old Synagogue is located, the oldest preserved synagogue in Europe at 900 years old. Construction of the Old Synagogue began as early as the 11th century. The Old Synagogue in Erfurt presents evidence of Erfurt's medieval Jewish culture.

Im Keller der Synagoge befindet sich eine Dauerausstellung “Der Erfurter Schatz”, ein 1998 in unmittelbarer Nähe der Synagoge geborgener gotischer Fund aus dem 13./14. Jahrhundert. Dieser jüdische Gold-und Silberschatz ist in Art und Umfang weltweit einzigartig.

Other exhibitions include the Erfurt Hebrew manuscripts from the 12th - 14th centuries, the intellectual heyday of Erfurt's first Jewish community.

Krämerbrücke

One of Erfurt's most famous landmarks is the Krämerbrücke - the longest bridge in Europe that is continuously built on and inhabited by houses. It is a highlight in Erfurt for tourists and locals alike.

When you walk across the bridge, you don't really notice that you are on a bridge. To see the building in its entirety, you have to go down the side alleys to the river. From there you have a great view of this jewel with its with little houses and arches.

Another highlight are the many small art and craft shops on the bridge. The shops with Thuringian blueprints, hand-painted ceramics, Lauscha glass, jewellery, woodcarvings and regional delicacies invite you to linger and discover.

Tip: In house number 31 you can discover a view of the watercourse and walk through a medieval cellar from the 15th century.

Ägidienkirche

Of the two former bridgehead churches at either end of the bridge, the eastern Ägidienkirche still exists today.

It was built in 1321-24 in connection with the Krämerbrücke and served the travelling merchants for pastoral care and reception of the sacraments.

Erfurt has countless church towers - but the Ägiedienkirche is something special. Its tower offers the most beautiful view of the city and the Krämerbrücke.

Tip: The Eiskrämer on the Krämerbrücke directly opposite the Ägidienkirche has unusual and mega delicious ice creams. Everything here is homemade - and the shop itself is a feast for the eyes. Be sure to try it!

Dams

This island stretches from the Rathausbrücke to the Lehmannsbrücke and has been built on since the Middle Ages. The Krämerbrücke (merchants' bridge) runs across it.

Several small footbridges form accesses to the island, which used to be built on mainly with mills.

After reunification, it was redesigned and has since formed a small green space with walking paths.

A walk in this back area of the Krämerbrücke at the Dämmchen is worthwhile. Here you will find many beautiful medieval buildings as well as numerous great cafés and restaurants for a break.

Tip: The restaurant "Augustiner an der Krämerbrücke" offers a great view of the Krämerbrücke and the Dämmchen as well as a delicious selection of Thuringian cuisine. 

Evang. Augustinian Monastery

The church and monastery complex of the Augustinian Hermits was built around 1300. 

Martin Luther trat 1505 in das Kloster ein. Das Augustinerkloster gedenkt Martin Luther mit einer Dauerausstellung unter dem Thema “Bibel-Kloster-Luther”. Die “Lutherzelle” ist als Teil der Ausstellung zu besichtigen.

The parish church of St. Philippi and Jacobi already stood on the present site of the Augustinian Church in 1131. 

The stained-glass windows of the Augustinian Church date back as early as 1310 and 1330. Also particularly worth seeing are the three tombstones in the choir, which date from between 1370 and 1380.