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Erfurt

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Street in Erfurt

Erfurt [1] is the capital of the German state of Thuringia (Thüringen). It was an important trading town during the Middle Ages, and has many beautiful old buildings and parks.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Erfurt lies on two federal motorways:

  • Bundesstraße 4 from Ilmenau in south to Nordhausen in north and
  • Bundesstraße 7 from Gotha in west to Weimar in east.

Depending on where you want to go in Erfurt you have several options to take an exit (Abfahrt) that brings you closest to your destination within the city by avoiding driving through the city center.

By train[edit]

The Erfurt Hauptbahnhof (main train station) is quite large. Numerous ICE and IC trains pass through daily, with direct lines to Berlin, Düsseldorf, Leipzig, Dresden and Frankfurt.

By plane[edit]

Several airlines fly from Erfurt to holiday destinations around the Mediterranean and Black Sea. Once arrived, the tram number 4 offers a convenient connection to the city center and the main station in about 25 minutes.

Get around[edit]

The city centre is quite compact so walking is often the best way to explore the city. Regular tram services run all around the city, with service intervals of at least every 10 minutes during most of the day. The trams are less frequent in the evenings. Night buses are available throughout the night to bring you home after midnight. They run once or twice every hour and meet at the very heart of the city centre (Anger) or depart from the main station.

See[edit][add listing]

Erfurt waterfront cafes in winter
  • Dom (Cathedral) and Severi Kirche (Church) both overlooking the Domplatz (main market square, location of the Christmas market in December as well as fairs throughout the year).
  • Krämerbrücke (Bridge with medieval houses, the most important landmark in Erfurt)
  • Fischmarkt with its Burgerhouses and town hall.
  • Augustinerkloster (monastery where Martin Luther lived), the main gate of the old university (third oldest German university, shut down in the 19th century and reopened in 1992)
  • Anger (main square, full of stores) with the old Post Office building.
  • Petersberg Citadel (a historical defense system and a great lookout over the city)
  • Old Synagogue Oldest surviving European Synagogue, today a museum that has an impressive collection of 14th century Jewish jewelry.

Much of Erfurt's charm is found in its narrow streets, many of which are pedestrianized, with their beautiful old houses, green areas and little bridges across the Gera river and the Stadtpark and the Nordpark on different sides of the city center.

In the tourist office you can buy a small guidebook in one of several languages that leads you through the city along the main sights.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Garden lovers can find many things to do and see in Egapark [2], which is a huge and beautiful botanical garden and accessible by the Straßenbahn. Check out for any exhibitions or programmes.
  • Watch a play in the recently-renovated Erfurt Theater [3].
  • Relax at the Wenigemarkt or behind the Krämerbrücke beside the river and have a beautiful look at the old houses standing on the 'bridge'.
  • Take a walk around the Stadtpark just near the main station and see the green side of the city.
  • Join a historical city tour organised by the Tourist Information [4] located at the Fischmarkt to have better and entertaining insight into the long lasting history of the town.

Buy[edit][add listing]

Shops on the Krämerbrücke offer unique crafts and souvenirs. Around the city centre, along the street Anger, Bahnhofstraße and all the way to the Fischmarkt and Domplatz along Schlösserstraße and Marktstraße you can find almost every apparel shop a Eurpoean heart desires, from H&M over Mango to Zara, Esprit, C&A and many, many more!

There are also a few shopping malls and other shopping opportunities spread over the whole city:

  • Anger 1, Anger 1 (directly in the city center Anger), [5]. Mon-Sat 10am-8pm. Shopping mall directly in the city centre. Offers the opportunity to shop for apparel, electronics, groceries and more on four floors.  edit
  • Thüringenpark, Nordhäuser Straße 73 t (tram 1 and 3 direction Europaplatz), [6]. Mon-Sat 10am-8pm. Shopping centre approx. 20 min outside the city centre. Shop for apparel, groceries, electronics and more. Post office, drug store and "Sparkasse" (a German bank)also inside. Special events happen around holidays or around special themes (e.g. fashion, sport etc.)  edit
  • TEC (Thüringer Einkaufszentrum), Hermsdorfer Str. 4 (Bus 51, 59 or 155 from main station, direction Niedernissa), [7]. Shopping mall 10 minutes outside the city centre. Shop here for groceries or electronics. Only a few apparel shops are here. The several shops open at different times, have a look at the website for details!  edit

Be aware: most shops (besides most grocery stores) are only open until 8pm. Sundays all shops and stores are closed! (Exemption: a few Sundays each year are open for sale)

Eat and drink[edit]

The Thüringer Bratwurst (famous sausage) comes from Erfurt, and the city has numerous stalls selling this world-famous delicacy. Be sure to try one!


  • Trattoria la Grappa, Schuhgasse 8 (near Fischmarkt and town hall), [8]. you find here finest italian cuisine,Enjoy excellent food in one of the best the well-known italian restaurant of Thuringia  edit
  • Tolle Knolle, Lange Brücke 53 [9] (near Domplatz)). Great for hearty potato casseroles, one of Germany's traditional dishes.
  • San Remo, Marktstrasse 21, [10]. Supposedly an excellent ice cream shop.  edit
  • FAM (Feines am Markt), Am Fischmarkt 19 (left side of the town hall, Fischmarkt), [11]. Nice location with the option to sit outside and watch people passing by, good breakfast and food in general. Closed on Mondays!  edit
  • Übersee, Kürschnergasse 8 (near Wenigemarkt), [12]. Nice cafe and bar with the opportunity to sit outside and have a nice look at the Gera river. Every day they offer a different special - check out the website!  edit
  • SolyMar, Walkmühlstraße 13 [13]. Very nice bar and lounge for cocktails, snacks and other beverages. Caribbean and relaxing flair through very nice furniture.

Night life[edit]

Erfurt has numerous small bars in the city center. When looking for a nice bar to have a drink or two don't miss to have a look at the Michaelisstraße near Fischmarkt where you can find numerous bars that offer a variety of drinks and snacks. Of course most of the cafes and restaurants mentioned in the "eat and drink" section also offer alcoholic beverages and are open until late.

  • Hemmingway, Michaelisstraße 45 [14]


If you intend to go clubbing or dancing, Erfurt can also offer some clubs, most of them are open on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

  • Musikpark, Willi-Brandt-Platz 1 (opposite of the main station), [15]. Black, House and Rock music. Every Thursday: Ladies World with free entrance until midnight and all you can drink for 6 euros. Every Friday: Night of the Stars with special drinks. Saturdays: varying themes.  edit
  • Club 1, Steigerstraße 18 (tram 5 direction Steigerstraße), [16]. Black and House music. Wednesday, Friday and Saturday varying events and DJs.  edit
  • Engelsburg (E-Burg), Allerheiligenstraße 20/21 (between Fischmarkt and Domplatz), [17]. Varying program and events, regular: Fightclub (different music styles). More alternative and rock music.  edit
  • Club Centrum, Anger 7 (city centre), [18]. Minimal music, drum&bass, electronic, house, black. Varying events on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.  edit
  • Presseklub, Dalbergsweg 1 (near the city centre) Cocktail Lounges, Salsa Parties and 70's/80's/Pop events on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

For budget travelers Erfurt offers a few hostels and low budget hotels or pensions to have a good night sleep for a reasonable price.

  • re4 Hostel, Puschkinstr. 21 (near the main station), [19]. 13-20 Euros.  edit
  • Opera Hostel, Walkmühlstraße 13 ((near main station and old opera house)), [20]. 13-45 Euros.  edit
  • Pension Wilhelm Busch, Wilhelm-Busch-Straße 68 ((Take Schillerstraße exit from Hauptbahnhof. Turn left out of station, then right into Windthorststraße, then left into Nonnenrain. Continue straight ahead over Clara-Zetkin-Straße. Turn right into Wilhelm-Busch-Straße. The pension is at no. 68 on the right hand side.)), [21]. from €30.  edit

Get out[edit]

  • By train, Weimar is only a quarter of an hour away.
  • Jena is just half an hour by train.
  • Leipzig is about an hour away.
  • Wander around on near-by Thuringen Forest, on which Thuringia called the "green heart of Germany".
  • Halle about 45 minutes away and has some great things to see. The largest city in Saxony-Anhalt is the birthplace of Handel and has a few castles.
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