Free Nuremburg Walking Tour Map of Old Town Nürnberg Germany Guide
Free Nuremburg Walking Tour Map of Old Town Nürnberg Germany Guide

Free Nuremberg Walking Tour:

Walking Tour Location: Old Town Nuremberg (Altstadt)
Cost: Free, Self-Guided (Museum costs listed below)
Style: Do-It-Yourself Walking Tour (Self Guided
  Nuremberg Train Station  (Hauptbahnhof)
End:  White Tower Subway Stop (Weißer Turm)
Walking Distance: 2.3 Miles
Time: 2 Hours for Walk (with attractions 6 hours)
Fun Scale: 9.5 out of 10

Old Town Nuremberg Overview:

Rebuilt after World War 2, Nuremberg was one of the mightiest medieval cities in Europe and is still a delight to visit today.

1. Nürnberg City Walls & Moat (Stadtmauer):

About The Nürnberg City Walls: The village of Nuremberg had some very rapid expansion in the Middle Ages and grew very powerful thanks in large part to its wonderful network of defensive city walls, towers, and moat.  These defenses helped the historic city to never by military means for almost 1,000 years when the Americas liberated it during WW2 in 1945.

The fortifications in Nuremberg were started in the 11th Century and took their current 5-kilometer long form (80% still standing/rebuilt) around town when settlements on both sides of the river were joined into one town in 1320.  By 1452 the layout of the wall and board moat (12 meters deep and up to 20 meters wide) was complete with many of the large towers added to the wall in the 1500s.  While 90% of Nuremberg was damaged by bombings in WW2, the restoration of the city walls, towers, and moat has been done amazingly well thanks to detailed pre-war photography to go off of.

From the main train station, the first thing you see on this free Nuremberg walking tour is the wonderful Medieval city walls.  The traffic in front of the station can be quite busy, but you can take the underground passage inside to avoid the cars which puts you directly exits into the dry moat.  We prefer to navigate the crosswalks as taking the small drawbridge over the moat as you enter old town Nuremberg feels amazing.  The elevated footbridge is also the best place to get some perspective on the scale of the impressive moat before the enter the Women’s Gate (Frauentor) and the Black Eagle Imperial Coats of Arms.  On your return at the end of this Nuremberg walking tour, feel free to take the underground passage.

2. Royal Craftsmen Courtyard (Handwerkerhof):

About The Royal Craftsmen Courtyard: Created inside a former defensive wall of the last wall section in 1971 to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Albrecht Durer’s birthday.  Was only meant to be temporary but because it was so popular they kept it.  Is it like a year-round Xmas market.  Can see Goldsmiths, doll makers, glass cutters, leather, gingerbread makers, and potters at work

3. Tower of Our Lady (Frauentorturm):

About The Tower of Our Lady: Right across the road from the train station, this amazing city wall watchtower served as the gateway and toll stop in Medieval times for visitors from the South (Regensburg & Munich) entering Nuremberg.  While there are a number of watchtowers and wall sections on our free Nuremberg walking tour, the Tower of Our Lady is our favorite in town outside of the Imperial Castle.

The tower was named for the nearby Saint Klara Convent (Poor Claire’s) which operated from 1230 until 1596 when it was closed in the Reformation.  Run by Dominican nuns, the convent was inclosed in inside the city walls when they were expanded to the new Tower of Our Lady.  While most of the old convent was torn down by the late-1800s, the church and part of the cemetery still survive today.

With a 4 color alphabet combo system for referencing the towers along the wall, this was originally called Blue Q (Blau Q).  After the train station opened a traffic bridge was opened here called The King’s Gate (Königstor) in 1853 but it got so congested that they had to abandon it.  Since the subway opened in 1988 the handy underground King’s Gate Passage has give better direct access to the station.

4. Saint Klara Convent:

About Saint Klara Convent: The Saint Klara Convent (Poor Claire’s) operated from 1230 until 1596 when it was closed in the Reformation.  As the Convent sat along the original city wall, it had a famous gate known as the Silver Tower.  It was also called the Tower of Our Lady, but that nickname moved to the round tower as the wall was expanded outward.  While most of the old convent was torn down by the late-1800s, the church (built in 1245) for the Dominican nuns and part of the cemetery still survive today.

5. Granary & Toll Hall (Mauthalle):

About Toll Hall: The massive Medieval was built in 1500 to store grain for the citizens of Nuremberg in cases of times of crisis.  At 84 meters long, 20 meters wide, and 29 meters high this was by far the largest of 12 granaries built by the Free Imperial City of Nuremberg.  Prior to the grainy hall, this was the location of the original Inner Women’s Gate (Inneres Frauentor) until the city wall had its last expansion outward in 1498.

From 1571 onward, the city’s customs house and municipal scales were located in the ground floor of the granary hall building.  Incoming goods from all over the world were checked and weighed here.  This regulation of incoming commerce gave the hall its official name of name Toll Hall (Mauthall).

In Medieval times, the Herrenkeller Beer Hall was located in the vaulted cellars.  During WW2, the Hall was bombed three times from 1943-45 with the first one burning the roof and the last one burning the half the building down requiring a ton of repair.  Since 1994 a brewery has returned to the cellars called Barfüßer.

6. Saint Lawrence Church (Sankt Lorenzkirche):

About Saint Lawrence Church: gives the neighborhood the name Lorenz.  three-aisled basilica from the 1200s, choir 1445, inside is a mix of Romanesque and Gothic.  Fountain of Virtue (Tugendbrunnen) outside is great as is the Nassauer Haus.

7. Museum Bridge (Museumsbrücke):

About Museum Bridge: Was the original crossing over the river but the current two-arched bridge was rebuilt in 1954 after WW2.

Great views of Heilig-Geist-Spital (Hospice of the Holy Spirit) on the river which was built in 1332 and is now a restaurant.  The connected Kreuzigungshof Inner Courtyard is built right over the river.
11:30 am, hot meals until 23:00.

Narrenschiffbrunnen Fountain of a ship.

8. Main Square (Hauptmarkt):

About The Main Square: In the 1100s this lowland area along the river was settled by Jewish people who had been expelled from Germany’s Rhineland.  The neighborhood grew from a swampy marsh to a thriving Jewish community wedged between the two walled sections of Nuremberg located on each side of the river.  After all of Nuremberg was united under one system of walls in 1320 the centrally located Jewish neighborhood started to get chipped away by local authorities.  The final blow came when the Ghetto was officially seized under orders from Emperor Charles IV in 1349.  Nearly 600 Jewish residents were murdered in religious persecution (Plague Pogrom) and the ghetto was demolished in favor of a new vast market square.  Fifty-one years early over 700 local Jews were killed in a similar fashion (Rindfleisch Pogrom), but this time the neighborhood was gone.

Originally called the Green Market (Grüner Markt). From Medieval times through 1895, the square was ringed with a horse-shaped colonnade of permanent market stalls (verschandelung).   From 1495 during the Reichstag Medieval tournaments took place here.  Still has a weekly market.

Xmas Market (Nürnberger Christkindlesmarkt) is the largest in Europe in the 5,000 square meter square.  Has been going on since the 1600s.  Over 2 million visitors a year and 200 wooden stalls with all of the regions of Germany plus many different foreign countries having their own sections.  The market spills out onto the neighboring squares including the children’s market with rides, games, and activities in Hans-Sachs-Platz.  Nuremberg Sausages (Rostbratwürste), mulled wine (Glühwein) in souvenir mugs, and little men made out of dried plums (Zwetschgenmännla)

9. Church of Our Lady (Frauenkirche):

About The Church of Our Lady: First Gothic hall church in Franconia. It was built in the 14th century on the foundations of the former synagogue from 1296 after the pogrom of 1349.

Church of our lady built in 1352 over the site of the former synagogue.  The Little Running Men (Männleinlaufen) art clock shows adoption of the Golden Bull recalls and is where the Christmas angel opens the market since 1933, chosen every two years from Nuremberg, between 16 and 19 years old, at least 1.60 meters tall.

10. The Beautiful Fountain (Schöner Brunnen):

About The Beautiful Fountain: Shaped like a 62-foot-tall (19 meters) Gothic spire, the aptly named Beautiful Fountain (Schöner Brunnen) was built from 1385-1396.  The four-story fountain has 40 brightly colored figures representing the worldview of the Holy Roman Empire in the Middle Ages. The main figures depict philosophy, the seven liberal arts, the four Evangelists, the four Church Fathers, the seven Prince-electors, the Nine Worthies, Moses, and seven Prophets (Hosea, Daniel, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Amos, Isaiah, and Joel).

While the stunning Medieval fountain has been recast many times over the centuries, the current limestone version from 1902 is impressive as it somehow survived WW2.  It was up until this restoration that the fountain’s water was fed by wooden pipes which were then replaced with led one (no longer led).  The fountain’s paint remains very crisp and we love the cannon shaped spouts which you can dip down to pour out fresh water.

The most notable change to the Beautiful Fountain was the addition of the seamless Golden Ring in 1587 (replaced many times) while the lattice fencing was being added.  Legend has it that the apprentice of the blacksmith adding the fencing had failed to gain approval to marry his master’s daughter.  To prove his skill, one night the apprentice created the brass ring and placed it in the Southwestern side of the fountain’s lattice leaving no visible seam.  Today if you turn the golden ring clockwise 3 times it means that you will have good luck, but if you turn it counter-clockwise you will become pregnant.  One thing to keep in mind is that Golden Ring only spreads it magic for locals (Nürnbergers) and there is a hidden Iron Ring (added in 1902) on the opposite Northeastern side of the lattice to grant the wishes of foreigners (ausländer).

One other fountain that is now missing from the square after World War 2 is the massive Neptune Fountain.  This fountain was made from 1650-1668 out of melted down guns from the 30 Years War as a symbol of peace.  Because of water flow issues, it was never installed and eventually sold to the Tsar of Russia for his palace in Saint Petersburg.  After failed attempts to buy it back, the city of Nuremberg was able to cast the original fountain and completed a replica here in the Main Square in 1902 which was the largest Baroque fountain in Germany.  Because the fountain was a symbol of peace it was removed by the Nazis who had large militant demonstrations square in the 1930s, but luckily it was preserved and today can be found in the Nuremberg city park.

11. Nuremberg Sausage Restaurants (Nürnberger Rostbratwürste):

About The Nuremberg Sausage Restaurants: Bratwursthäusle bei St. Sebald cooked in open kitchen since 1313 served it even numbers of 6-12 with spicy mustard. regulated on size and weight. in bun it’s 3. choice of sauerkraut, radish, or potato salad has its own butcher’s shop in the house. has a brat shop at the Handcraft Square and different restaurant sebalder platz

Bratwurst Röslein since 1493 250 seat beer garden

there are also budget stands.

12. Old Town Hall (Atles Rathaus):

About The Old Town Hall: Earlier in this Nuremberg walking tour we learned how the Jewish Ghetto was seized by the city (including a mass killing in 1349) to form the main Market Square.  Prior to this, the local administration had already begun to reorganize the center of town as the Nuremberg city council started meeting here inside the warehouse of a wealthy cloth merchant guild (Gewandhaus) on nearby Cloth Alley (Tuchgasse).  They later acquired the bakery shops owned by the Heilsbronn Monastery and built a Gothic-style Town Hall at the present location from 1332-1340.  The earth around the buildings was raised up and the former street level of the bakery became the underground cellars of the Town Hall.  These cellars served as Nuremberg’s Medieval dungeons (Lochgefängnisse) from 1340-1806 and are pretty interesting to tour, but first we want to give you an overview of the Town Hall Complex itself.

On the Southside of the current complex, you can still see the Old Town Hall (Altes Rathaus) built over the former bakery with an Eastern facade.  The upper floor of this Gothic section with an arched wooden ceiling is known as the Great Hall (Groß Rathaussaal) and was a masterpiece in Medieval times.  Thanks to the designs of local artist Albrecht Dürer, renovations in the Great Hall from 1521-1530 gave it the largest wall and ceiling mural in Europe at the time.  Depicting the triumphal procession of Emperor Maximilian I and scenes from the Last Judgement the room held its largest mural in Europe statue for 10 years until the Sistine Chapel interior was finished in 1541.  The exterior of the Old Town Hall also had full-height murals on it from the 1500s-1900s. The Great Hall stayed important as it held the Banquet of Peace in 1649 when the opposing sides from the 30 Years Wars met to make peace.

As you work around the Westside of the Town Hall complex you will notice that the architecture drastically changes to resembles a palazzo as it was designed in the Italian Renaissance-style.  This 4-wing addition with an inner courtyard was built from 1616-1622 although it wasn’t fully finished until after the 30 Years War.  Preserved on the Western facade are carved Baroque reliefs above each of the three Doric-style doorways depicting figures from The Book of Daniel.

Above the first portal which leads to the Spiessgeselle Restaurant (website) is Nuremberg’s Lesser Coat of Arms.  Around the coat of arms is the many-headed leopard (left) representing Greece with Alexander the Great and the animal with ten horns (right) representing Rome with Emperor Julius Caesar.  The middle horn also has a tiny face of the Pope.  The middle portal which leads to the Medieval Dungeon tours is the full double-headed Imperial Eagle Coat of Arms (Reichsadler) of the Holy Roman Empire.  Roman Goddess of Justice (left) holding a sword and scale plus the Goddess of Truth (right) called Veritas holding a mirror as the courthouse was also inside the Town Hall.  The third portal has the Greater Coat of Arms of showing the golden King Headed Eagle (Königskopfadler) which has been used as Nuremberg’s seal since 1240.  Lion (left) representing Babylon with King Nebuchadnezzar and a bear (right) representing Persia and King Cyrus.

Much of the interior of the Nuremberg Town Hall was ruined in a fire from bombings in WW2.  While most of the complex has been restored, the famous murals inside the Great Hall have been lost.

13. Medieval Dungeons (Lochgefängnisse):

About The Medieval Dungeons: Below the Old Town Hall are the cellars which served as Nuremberg’s Medieval dungeons from 1340-1806.  Having survived the fire during WW2 the dungeons were restored and opened for daily public tours in 2018 and we were among the first people to visit them.  The tours of the dungeon are very interesting and give you an excellent insight into the depressing justice system in Medieval times.  With the municipal court located above the dungeons, they could torture you into a confession, get you sentenced in front of the judge, and get you off for punishment or execution pretty quickly without recourse in those days.

You start your visit to the Town Hall Dungeons in a restored Gothic hall where receive you an audio guide to start the hourly group tour.  As you descend into below-ground you see a Medieval well, the old blacksmith forge, and multiple rooms with torture devices of the time.  It is interesting to see the devices up close and the most powerful is the large rack displayed in the former chapel room which would pull prisoners by their limbs.

Our favorite area of the Medieval Dungeons tour are the 12 prisoner cells along a long stone corridor.  It is in this corridor where you can make out the original street level road and half-timber shop entrances that the Old Town Hall was built on top of from 1332-1340 to form the cellars.  The dozen holding cells, called hole prisons (Lochgefängnisse), are quite small at roughly 6.5 feet by 6.5 feet (2m x 2m) with vaulted ceilings.  Some of the prisoners were held here prior to public execution while many others were brought to the dungeons for torture to extract confessions.  The coolest rooms are Cell 11 which is marked with a Red Rooster to hold arsonists and Cell 12 which is marked with a Black Cat to hold slanderers.

You can get an idea of how gruesome the punishments were in Medieval times before your visit by reading the book A Hangman’s Diary.  The eerie book is translated from the detailed journal of Franz Schmidt who served as the Nuremberg executioner from 1573-1617.  His detailed writings show he executed at least 361 people and 345 were beaten with rods to go along with countless others who had their ears and fingers cut off as punishment.  Later on this free Nuremberg walking tour, we will visit the Hangman’s Bridge (Henkerssteg) which led to the tower the executioners lived in.

Tour Hours: Tours start daily on the hour 11am-3pm and last 30 minutes.  Cost: Since the tours opened in 2018 they have been free.  Important Information: Hourly tours are limited to 20 people and led by a guide but done through the provided audio guides available in German, English, Spanish and Italian.  Due to the underground tunnels, they do not advise the tour for guests under the age of ten years old and it is not wheelchair/stroller accessible.  Website: HereTime Required: The tours take 30 minutes but expect a 60 total visit as you need to arrive early.

14. Fembo House City Museum:

About The Fembo House: The well preserved Fembo House is Nuremberg’s only surviving large merchant’s house from the late-Renaissance.  Sitting halfway up the hill to the Imperial Castle the facade of the mansion built by wealthy silk merchant is still very impressive.  The home was later owned by two other patrician families (Wilhiem and Fembo) and now serves as the City Museum.

A tour of the 30 rooms over 4 floors gives you a great overview of city history of Nuremberg from middle ages to 1800s.  We especially love The Beautiful Room which was built as part of the Peller Mansion on Egidienberg Square in 1610 which was considered the finest in town.  Prior to being bombed inWW2, the woodwork, ceilings, paneling, and paintings from this room in the Peller Mansion were moved to protective storage and later re-assembled here at the Fembo House.  Other rooms include a family hall, a private ballroom, and the kitchen of the Fembo House which have most of the elements dating back to the 1600s.

Since 2016 the Fembo house has also been home to the official replicas of the Imperial Crown and Jewels (Kronschatz).  The originals were held in Nuremberg’s Holy Spirit Hospital from 1424 for nearly 400 years and are now on display in Vienna since 1800.

Hours: Tuesday-Friday 10am-5pm; Saturday & Sunday until 6pm; closed Mondays.  Address: Burgstraße 15.  Website: HereTime Required: Expect around 60-90 minutes on average to tour the inside of the Fembo House with a quick 30-minute visit being doable.  We prefer to see it from the outside if you are only in Nuremberg for one day, but tour it if you are here for at least two days.

15. Imperial Stables Hostel (Kaiserstallungen):

About The Imperial Stables Hostel: Located inside the former Imperial horse stables (1495) and grainy is now the wonderful DJH Yout Hostel.  Like in many Germany cities during the occupation, the stables were turned to the Reich Youth Hostel in 1937, destroyed in World War II, and rebuilt in 1953.  Today it is not only one of the oldest hostels in Europe, but you also get to stay where real Medieval knights once stayed, albeit far more modernized now.  As one of the biggest hostels in Germany, the massive hall has 93 rooms with 340 guest beds.

The Luginsland Tower on the Eastside was built in 1377 and has the original 4 corners style top from the Middle Ages.

1190 Zollern extended the Pentagonal Tower (Fünfeckturm).  In the castle wall just beyond the tower, you’ll find two horseshoe prints which are shrouded in legend. An ancient tale tells us there was an errant knight named Eppelein, who stole from the citizens of Nuremberg. Once he attacked a wealthy patrician bride on her wedding day – and even kissed her! He was captured and shortly before his execution was granted one last wish: Eppelein wanted to sit one more time upon his faithful steed. But he didn’t stay in one place: With a foolhardy leap of his horse, Eppelein sprang over the moat of the Nuremberg castle and escaped – leaving the hoof prints of his horse in the castle wall

Rooms: They have 10 person hostel rooms, 2 person private rooms, and family rooms.  Cost: Board in shared rooms starts at 32 Euros a night or for private rooms starting at 90 Euros.  Guest Age: While all ages are welcome the shared rooms at Youth Hostels are primarily intended for young people which small surcharges if you are 27 or older.  If you have a private family room children 6 and under stay free.  Website: Here.

16. Imperial Castle of Nuremberg (Kaiserburg Nürnberg):

About The Imperial Castle: They have found evidence of a settlement on Castle Hill that dates back to before the year 1000, although the current castle was started in 1050.   Salier, then Staufer, then Hollenzoller burggave

Hours: Daily.  Website: Here.

17. Castle Garden (Burggarten):

About The Castle Garden: Laid out in the 1000’s when Emperor Frederic resided here.
the oldest depiction of the imperial castle of 1425 shows a tree garden with a braided fence.  Emperor Friedrich III. (1440-1493)  had a hanging garden for storing wine on the Southside.   Between 1538 and 1545 bastions were built on the north and west side, on which later the existing castle garden was created.

Hours: Open daily from April through October from 8am-Dark (8pm at the latest)Cost: Free.

18. Animal Garden Gate Square (Platz Am Tiergärtnertor):

About Tiergärtnertor: The main square of the upper part of town with many stunning buildings which serves as Nuremberg’s outdoor living room.  The main gateway used to be at the bottom of the tall watchtower which was later bricked up in favor of the long winding tunnel next to it that cut through the outer wall under the bastion.  Because this gateway led to a royal game preserve inside the moat during the time of the Burgrave, it gained the name Animal Gardener Tower (Tiergärtnertor).

19. Albrecht Dürer’s House:

About Albrecht Dürer’s House: The home and workshop of the famous local artist Albrecht Dürer.  Renaissance artist Albrecht Dürer from 1509 to his death in 1528, bottom built in 1420.  Germany’s greatest painter, same time as Mike, signed all paintings for branding and mastered engraving prints which made him super rich and able to buy this house by the castle.  replica copperplate engraving and woodcutting demo upstairs.  Emperor was Max I in his time

Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10am-5pm; Thursdays until 8pm; closed Mondays.  Cost: 6.50 for Adults; 1.50€ for students.  Website: Here.

20. Medieval Beer Cellars (Historische Felsengänge):

About The Medieval Beer Cellar Tours: Nuremberg’s “Purity Law” goes back to 1303 when the Town Council ruled that only barley malt (and no other grain) could be used to brew beer.  On November 11th, 1380, the city council decreed that anyone intending to brew and sell beer must have a cellar of his own, “ten feet long and sixteen feet wide.”  This led to the citizens of Nuremberg digging vaults and passages in the bright red sandstone under their city.  After modern refrigeration, the rock-cut cellars lost their importance, but they did serve as bomb shelters for thousands of citizen as WW2 air raids destroyed 90% of old town Nuremberg.

During an exciting tour of the rock-cut beer cellars today, you will descend below the streets of Nuremberg to learn the extensive history of the tunnels.  The medieval history is very interesting covering the tunnels uses as a storage place for both beer and pickles.  They even came up with an ingenious way to bring in snow and ice in the Winter to help the cellars stay cooler much longer into the Spring which was good for brewery beer.  At the end of the guided tour, you even get to sample your choice of local red beer or whiskey from the Altstadthof Brewery.  We really love the red beer which is something Nuremberg is famous for, but the whiskey is also quite good.  Overall, visiting the Medieval rock-cut beer cellars is one of our top three things to do on this free Nuremberg walking tour.

Tour Hours: 60-75 minute long tours are normally in German but with audio guides available in many languages.  Daily every hour from 11am-5pm.  Special Tours In English: Saturdays & Sunday at 11:15am and you get more info than the audio guide version during the German tours.  Cost: 8€ for adults; 7€ for students; ages 7 and under free; includes one free taste testing of whiskey or red beer for every paid admission and the option to add on more. Website & Tickets: Here.

21. Historic Art Bunker (Historischer Kunstbunker):

About The Historic Art Bunker: During WW2, one of the section of Medieval rock-cut cellars was turned into a climate controlled bunker to preserve much of Nuremberg precious works of art.

Pieces kept safe here during air raid bombings included the Annunciation Medallion (Englischer Gruß) from Saint Lawrence Church, the mechanical clock figures (Männleinlaufen) from the Church of Our Lady, many works by Albrecht Dürer, Martin Behaim’s Globe, religious altars, Holy Roman Empire’s Imperial Regalia (German crown jewels from the Middle Ages), and countless stained glass windows.  Much of the local treasures stored here were from the 1500s when Nuremberg was at its cultural peak.  Many of these pieces were kept in the Art Bunker after the war and not moved back to their original homes until the re-construction of Nuremberg was complete in the 1970s.

It’s astonishing that for as bloody thirsty for destruction the 3rd Riech was during the war that they took such big measures to preserve art.  In Nuremberg this effort started a full year before the war of planned aggression broke out and climatized cells were already being built in a section of the rock-cut cellars below the Imperial Castle.  The entrance to the Historic Art Bunk was hidden inside the home at Obere Schmiedgasse #52 where you still enter for tours today.  Humidity was controlled, ventilation was installed, insulation was added to regulate the temperature, and backup power cells were built.

The Art Bunker was the only one of its kind for a while and stored precious artifacts from all over Germany including codex from Heidelberg and the Virgin Mark Altar from Krakow.

Tour Hours: 75-minute long tours are normally in German but with audio guides available in many languages.  Monday-Thursday 2:30pm; Friday 2:30pm & 5:30pm: Saturday 11:30am, 2:30pm, and 5:30pm; Sunday 11:30am & 2:30pm.  Special Tours In English: Saturdays at 3:30pm and you get more info than the audio guide version during the German tours.  Cost: 7€ for adults; 6€ for students; Ages 7 and under free. Website & Tickets: Here.

22. Saint Sebald Church (Sebalduskirche):

About Saint Sebald Church: First mentioned in 1072, most important in town, rebuilt Romanesque in 1230, 5th & 6th floors added in 1483.after the city’s patron saint.  imperial heir to the throne Wenzel in the nearby church of St. Sebald in 1361 baptized here.  Inside the church is the grave of the city’s saint Sebaldus

On the Northside of the church is Sebalder Platz with a couple of cool houses and Goldenes Posthorn is the oldest wine tavern, since 1498. Local pub of Albrecht Dürer and Hans Sachs.

Visiting Hours: January-March daily 9:30am-4pm; April-December daily 9:30am-6pm.  Cost: Free to enter although a modest donation is common the entrance.  Guided Tours: On many evenings in July and August they have tours available for 4 euros which also lets you hear the live organ music.  Tower Tours: You can request a tour of the towers by email two weeks in advance for 40 euros covering 7 people and 5 euros extra for each additional person (24 max).  Website: Here.

23. White Tanners’ Lane (Weißgerbergasse):

About White Tanners’ Lane: 20 historical homes survived the war and give us an idea of the original appearance of the streets of the Old Town.  affluent half-timbered, the historical town houses,

As the name says, the “Weißgerber” – leather
tanners who used white alum powder (potassium aluminum sulfate) to create fine leather – once lived in this lane.

It stunk and needed a lot of water so they were put on the outflow area of the river and most of the owners were wealthy enough to have their own well.

After the hides were soaked and beaten to softness with a rammer, one scraped off the
tallow with a curved blade and then dried the leather on frames on the city wall. A
depiction of a rammer and knife, as used by the tanners in their trade, can be seen on
House Nr. 24.
Today, the Weißgerbergasse is a favorite spot for bars, cafes, and handicraft workshops.

24. Hangman’s Bridge (Henkersteg):

About The Imperial Castle: Stepping out over the Pegnitz River on the Max Bridge (Maxbrücke) leads you to the most iconic viewpoint in Nuremberg; the Hangman’s Bridge.  With slow-moving water reflecting a  dramatic weeping willow and neighboring Medieval buildings, the scene looks like a real-life painting.

The first striking structure is the largest half-timbered building in Germany (48-meters-long), known as the Wine Depot (Weinstadel).  While it is one of the most beautiful buildings in Nuremberg it was built in 1446 as a leprosy hospital (lepraspital).  Only once a year, the lepers who were allowed into the city walls for just three days over Easter to receive food, clothing, and medical attention.  Starting in 1571 the Wine Depot was a wine storage hall, a work and spinning house, and as housing for poor families. Gutted by damage in WW2, since 1950 it is student housing for the university.

Next door to the Wine Depot is the stone tower where the Nuremberg hangman lived in Medieval times.  When it was built in 1320, this tower house was on the outer edge of the original city walls and faced away from town toward the West.  This placement was because, during the superstitious Middle Ages, the executioner was not allowed to have contact with honorable citizens.  In 1457, the wooden Hangman’s Bridge (Henkerssteg) was completed as a path for the executioner to cross the river from his house separate from the normal population.  The timeless bridge was rebuilt with covered roof following the Flood of 1595 and crossing it today is one of the most tantalizing stretches of this free Nuremberg walking tour.

At the end of the covered Hangman’s Bridge, the former executioner’s tower house which opened in 2007 as a gallery covering the criminal history of Nuremberg.  You can get an idea of how gruesome the punishments were in Medieval times before you visit Nuremberg by reading the book A Hangman’s Diary.  The eerie book is translated from the detailed journal of Franz Schmidt who served as the Nuremberg executioner from 1573-1617.  His detailed writings show he executed at least 361 people and 345 were beaten with rods to go along with countless others who had their ears and fingers cut off as punishment.

Exiting the Hangman’s Bridge at the halfway point puts you onto Flea Market Island (Trödelmarkt) was a pig market and a market of “junk shops” in the Middle Ages.  Today the junk shops have been replaced by boutique stores and one of our favorite beer halls in town known as the Junk Tavern (Trödelstuben, website).

Hangman Gallery Hours: Saturdays & Sundays April-December 2-6pm.  Cost: 2€.  Website: Here.

25. Emperor’s Lane (Kaiserstrasse):

About Emperor’s Lane: shopping on Nuremberg’s most exclusive street.

26. Ludwig’s Square (Ludwigsplatz):

About Ludwig’s Square: As you enter the length you immediately run into our favorite coffee shop in Nuremberg’s which has outdoor seating wrapping around a sprawling fountain known as Brown’s Coffee Lounge (website).

famous for its unique fountain reflecting the stages of married life.   bronze statues of the Marriage Carousel were created by Professor Jürgen Weber in 1984

The pleasure and pain of married life
The Marriage Carousel, created in 1984 by the artist Jürgen Weber, contrasts the positive
and negative sides of married life. The basis for this monumental fountain is a poem
written in 1541 by the Nuremberg artist Hans Sachs, called “The Bittersweet Married
Life”. The Marriage Carousel shows the entire spectrum of marriage from naked
eroticism to a fight to the death. The poet himself is portrayed at the head of the
fountain as a dancing figure.

fountain out front is the Ehekarussell translates to The Marriage Merry-go-Round
Directly in front of the White Tower is the “Marriage Carousel”, a fountain made of marble and bronze, completed in 1984. The scenes with the larger-than-life figures are about “bittersweet marital life”. The basis for the work was a poem of the same name by the Nuremberg master Hans Sachs from 1541.

White Tower (Weißer Turm) one of the few remaining pieces of the second-to-last city wall. The paint which gave the tower its name has long-since disappeared – maybe that’s no surprise, as the tower was originally built in 1250.