Nuremberg, the second largest city in Bavaria after Munich, is an energetic and stimulating place, which deserves to be remembered not only for the crucial role it played during WWII and in the post-war period, but also for the beauty of its architecture, and its intense cultural and nightlife.
Delve with us into some of the most central chapters of world history on our Nuremberg shore excursion!
In medieval times, Nuremberg was the unofficial, de facto capital of the Holy Roman Empire, as well as the favourite residence of the German kings. Their dwelling place was the Kaiserburg, the imperial castle that played a key role in the drawing up of Emperor Charles IV's Golden Bull, a document promulgated in 1356 that changed the way Holy Roman Emperors were elected.
In the first half of the twentieth century, Nuremberg was again in the focus of international attention, although the circumstances this time would lead to one of the most sinister chapters in world history. To Adolf Hitler, Nuremberg was the most significant city in German history, a symbol of the glory of the German empire and the cradle of nationalistic sentiments. He considered it the most German of all cities. it was here that the dictator built the Kongresshalle, a huge structure destined to become a sanctuary of Nazism, and the Zeppelinfeld, where most of the big Nazi parades, rallies and events took place.
In the north wing of the partly finished Kongresshalle (Congress Hall), you can visit the Dokumentationszentrum (Documentation Centre), which examines various historical aspects, including the rise of the NSDAP, the Hitler cult and the party rallies.
In the epicentre of the Nazi regime, the Jews lived in fear of humiliation and attack from the first moment of Hitler’s seizure of power in 1933. On August 10, 1938, the synagogue and communal center were demolished. Exactly three months later, a systematically organized pogrom broke out. The two remaining synagogues and numerous shops were burned to the ground. Of the 91 Jews in Germany who met their deaths on Kristallnacht, 26 (including ten suicides) were in Nuremberg. Immediately afterward, between 2,000 and 3,000 Jews left the city. In 1939 only 2,611 Jews remained. In 1941 there were 1,800. A total of 1,601 were deported during the war.
On our Nuremberg shore excursion, we will explore the places of Holocaust remembrance, and retrace the whole history of the city’s Jewry since its inception in the 12th century, when Jews from surrounding regions were fleeing persecution and settled in Nuremberg. The role played by the Jews in hop trading in the 18th and 19th century is a particularly interesting chapter. As a matter of fact, a major part of the hop trade was in the hands of Jewish merchants. Some merchants, who later became honorary citizens of their hometown of Nuremberg, achieved supra-regional prominence.
Back to the 20th century, it was precisely in Nuremberg that an international court was established in 1945 in order to prosecute Nazi leader for crimes against peace and humanity. Göring, Hess, Speer and 21 other Nazi leaders were tried here. In the Memorium Nuremberg Trials, you can learn more about one of the greatest trials in history.
Discover the city by just strolling through its scenic Altstadt, enjoy a typical franconian dish and try the delicious Landbier (regional beer) in one of the many Wirtshäuser (pubs), and if you happen to be there in December, don’t miss the spectacular Christmas market!
Embark on a journey through Nuremberg, a city in the spotlight of history, on our Nuremberg shore excursion!