1 The port of Hamburg
Also known as the “Gateway to the World” (“Tor zur Welt” in German), the port of Hamburg is the most important in Germany and the second largest in Europe. Even though Hamburg is located 120 kilometers from the sea – the Elbe River runs through it – maritime traditions are strongly rooted here. Discover them in one of the many museum ships! The port of the Hanseatic City of Hamburg has existed since the 12th century and is still home to thousands of commercial ships from all over the world. The imprints of the technical revolutions in the port of Hamburg are still visible in the various districts around it. The Maritime City is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
2 The Bremen musicians
Next to the Bremen town hall is a bronze statue of four musicians unlike any other. Created by the artist Gerhard Marcks in 1951, this donkey, this dog, this cat and this rooster come from the imagination of the Grimm brothers. Mistreated by their masters, they befriend each other and decide to chase thieves out of a house, scaring them with their screams, to settle in. A symbol of the city, but also of freedom, the statue of the Bremer Stadtmusikanten (“Bremer Stadtmusikanten”) marks the beginning of the German fairy tale route (between Bremen and Hanau).
3 The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin
Landmark and emblematic monument of Berlin, the Brandenburg Gate (“Brandenburger Tor”) is today above all the symbol of the unity regained between the “two Germanies”, after the fall of the wall in November 1989. Shortly before Christmas 1989, tens of thousands of jubilant people came to celebrate its official reopening. Inspired by the Propylaea of the Acropolis in Athens and erected by the Prussian King Frederick William II at the end of the 18th century, it was damaged during the Second World War. The Pariser Platz on which the gate is built is a lively center today, around which there are many official buildings.
4 The Church of Our Lady of Dresden
Dresden ChurchToday, the “Stone Bell” of Dresden has once again become the symbol of the city, and the symbol of the post-World War II reconstruction.
Also known as the “Frauenkirche”, the Protestant Church of Our Lady of Dresden is the symbol of the city, and until recently it was still the symbol of its destruction during World War II. Built in baroque style in the 18th century, it was almost razed to the ground by the Allies in February 1945. Long left in a pitiful state, funds were collected at the time of reunification to begin renovation work, which was completed in 2005. Today it is very popular, especially for the magnificent organ, the beautiful altar and the beautiful baroque fresco. Its dome or “Stone Bell” is recognizable from afar.
5 Cologne Cathedral
Cologne Cathedral facadeThe Cologne Cathedral (“Kölner Dom”) is the most visited monument in Germany!
Almost seven centuries were necessary to build this monument of Gothic architecture! Very slender, imposing without being overwhelming, the cathedral of Cologne (“Kölner Dom”) is the witness of the strength of the Christian faith in Europe. Its two towers have become the emblems of the city, and from closer up you can see the stone lace that adorns them with countless statues and reliefs. The panorama from the heights of the cathedral is breathtaking! The feeling of aspiration that one feels inside is unique, and the wonders that one finds there are really worth the detour.
6 The Frankfurt Stock Exchange
The Frankfurt Stock Exchange is one of the world’s largest trading markets (DAX index). Although the facade of the building that houses it – dating from the 19th century – is rather remarkable, with its many columns, it is above all the two statues that are right in front of it that attract tourists. They are two bronze animals: a bear and a bull, representing respectively the fall and the rise of the stock market. They were made on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of the Stock Exchange! The interior of the building can be visited by reservation.
7 The Porsche Museum in Stuttgart
Opened in 2009, the spectacular Porsche Museum in Stuttgart is quite a surprise. From the outside, it is a building with a futuristic and daring architecture, and the visitor is welcomed by 3 Porsches hanging on giant spikes in front of the entrance. On 5,600 m2 of exhibition space, you can discover 80 mythical vehicles, both racing and road cars. The exhibition traces the history of the Porsche brand, which has become a symbol of automotive excellence in the world thanks to its technical development and its incredible sporting achievements.