We awoke at 8ish and headed out to the Nazi Rally grounds. Obviously Nuremberg has significant links to the Nazi era, due to its central position in the country and its historical links to the Roman Empire it was chosen to be the site of the huge Nazi conventions. After Hitler came to power the rallies became huge propaganda events and it was at such a rally that he passed the Nuremberg Laws, the anti-Semitic laws that led to the Holocaust.
We took tram 6 to Dokuzentrum, which stopped right outside the grounds. I was already regretting the coat I had bought out with me as the clouds parted and the sun started to shine. The entry fee to the grounds were 5 euros however for an additional 2.50 you could get a ticket that allowed you entry into other museums, which we chose to do.
The rally grounds were the home of the rallies. Out of the various buildings that once stood some were damaged in the war, some were demolished and some were never finished so it is difficult to fully understand what it would have looked like in its heyday from visiting. The museum within the grounds though has many images showing such a thing and models to show what it would have looked like should it ever have been completed.
Within one of the wings of the Congress hall, a building inspired by the roman colosseum, sits the museum. The exhibition talks about the causes and consequences of National Socialism and the impression the rallies had upon participants.
Unfortunately we didn’t quite get the full experience from the museum. When we had bought the tickets the lady behind the counter said something that I didn’t quite hear but Adam responded with thanks so once we left the counter I asked what she had said. He replied that she had reminded us to go to the gardens. Upon entering the museum we were dismayed to find the whole thing was in German, we could look at the images and video footage but we didn’t really understand the context of what we were looking at. That’s when Adam said ‘Oh, actually I think she told us to get the guide,’
We didn’t really want to walk around again to get it so we just left it and tried to get everything we could from it. The imagery was very powerful so it was still interesting to look around. There was a viewing platform over the grounds which was impressive and seemed to be missed by a lot of people so make sure you find it.
We got the tram back into town and then caught the U1 train line to Barenschanze, where we could visit the Nuremberg Palace of Justice, where the trials for the war criminals that participated in the Holocaust took place. It is still a working court and I have to say the museum section was not easily to spot, we did walk around cluelessly for a while before we noticed someone with a touristy looking leaflet and headed towards the direction they’d come from. Unfortunately Courtroom 600, where the trials took place, was being used so we couldn’t visit it but they had a very extensive museum.
Our ticket price was included in the ticket we’d bought at the rally grounds and this time we remembered to pick up the audio guide. It was really informative and gave an amazing overview of everything. The museum covered everything from the lead up to the trials, the jurors, the arguments, the consequences, it was really comprehensive.
After we left we stopped at a bakery chain next to the palace called ‘Der Beck’ which sold really nice sandwiches. All that war talk had worked up our appetite!
We made our way back into the centre and walked around the old town, including the castle. It was heavily damaged in the war but restored to its historical form and its certainly very charming. The area was hilly but the buildings made it very lovely to walk around. We walked through the castle gardens which were beautiful and offered some fantastic views over the city.
During our walks we found some cute little shops and indulged in our standard holiday souvenir, something for our Christmas tree. We walked past the Frauenkirche, the church of our lady, and admired its beautiful glittering gold clock. The ‘beautiful fountain’ sits right beside it but unfortunately it was covered in scaffolding and we couldn’t see it.
We also saw the St Lorenz church, with its intricate facade that reminded me of the cathedral in Cologne. We walked through the ‘Way of Human Rights’, an outdoor sculpture built in the 90’s. It was simple and meaningful I suppose but not overly interesting.
|St Lorenz church|
We walked through Handwerkerhof, which was a small courtyard of shops that offered handcrafted items alongside a few rustic restaurants. It was a cute area to walk around, despite the fact we didn’t see anything we wanted to buy.
|Way of human rights|
By this time we were really hungry and stopped at ‘Pizz & Via’. We were tempted by the huge pizza slices in the window that were available to take away but we wanted to sit down and have a rest as well so we grabbed a table. It was very quick service and the pizzas were really good. All washed down by beer of course!
After food we were pretty exhausted, my fitbit showed around 17km of walking so we retired back to the hotel and chilled!