Germany’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites
With its ancient history and rich cultural heritage, Germany is a wonderful destination to explore. There are no less than thirty-seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Germany and visitors to this fascinating European country should try to include at least one of these in their travel itinerary. After all, only the finest monuments to human endeavors and the most spectacular natural features are deemed worthy of the UNESCO World Heritage title.
Having been the center of both imperial and episcopal power for close to one thousand years, the Bamberg Old Town is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Founded by Emperor Heinrich II, the town is spread over seven hills, surrounded by breathtaking scenery, and features a number of historical buildings, including St Michael’s Abbey, the Bamberg cathedral and the old town hall. Having escaped military conflicts of the past with minimal damaged, Bamberg has retained its baroque and medieval structures and is the largest original old town in Germany.
Founded in 1143 and considered to be the first westernized city on the Baltic Coast, Lübeck is characterized by a medieval atmosphere and features a host of historical and cultural attractions visitors will enjoy exploring, the most famous of which is Holsten Gate. This imposing structure consisting of two towers and a central building once served as the gate to the ancient city and has become the hallmark feature of Lübeck. Today it is a museum for municipal history and provides a window into the past of this charming German city.
Built in 1147-1178 the Maulbronn Monastery Complex is the most well-preserved monastic complex north of the Alps and is a superb example of the transition from the Romanesque to Gothic period in architecture. In the mid-1500s the abbey served as a Protestant monastery school which was attended by influential historic figures including Hermann Hesse, Friedrich Hölderlin and Johannes Kepler.
Other UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Germany include the Aachen Cathedral, Beyreuth's Opera House, Berlin's Museum Island, Bremen's Town Hall, the Cologne Cathedral, Wartburg Castle, the Fagus Factory in Alfeld, Luther memorials in Wittenberg, the Messel Pit Fossil Site, the Wadden Sea, Upper Middle Rhine Valley, Classical Weimar, and the Prussian Palaces and Parks of Potsdam and Berlin.