One day in medieval Lüneburg in Germany
Not many travelers think about Lüneburg when traveling around Germany. But those who stop there to visit the historical city center will enjoy a surprise. Lüneburg is definitely one of the places to visit in Germany. You might have seen a lot of ugly post war architectural sins in Germany. Lüneburg is an enjoyable contrast to that. If you have one day to spend in the area around Hamburg, go for Lüneburg!
The city got first mentioned in the year 956 in the Middle Ages. And you will still find houses with a history of hundreds of years. I’m not saying, that it is a must do to go sightseeing in Lüneburg, but if you are close by, Lüneburg is worth to get discovered. With it’s 77.000 inhabitants, it is small enough not to stress you out. There are hardly any cars in the city center. I always really enjoy the vibe. And I have visited Lüneburg several times since I was a child, because I grew up close by.
High number of pubs in Lüneburg
Beautiful architecture and a picturesque harbor remind me of hanseatic times. You can spend your days in Lüneburg with sightseeing, your evenings in one of the many bars. It’s a university city with obviously heaps of thirsty young people, students, locals and visitors of all ages. Hard to believe, but true: Lüneburg has the second-highest number of pubs per square meter in Europe after Madrid. That is why some people would call it one of the places to visit in Germany
Lüneburg is also a perfect city for a day trip from Hamburg. It will take you less than one hour to get from Hamburg to Lüneburg by car or train.
Sightseeing in Lüneburg
Be aware, that Lüneburg in general is not the place to save money. Lüneburg is a very popular destination for day tourists. Flats are rare. Restaurant prices are nearly comparable to Hamburg standard. If you are traveling on a budget to Lüneburg, be prepared, that things have it’s price.
If you go sightseeing in Lüneburg for one day, make sure not to miss the following sights – all in walking distance in the city center.
Harbor as a visitor magnet: Am Stintmarkt
In summer, the street Stintmarkt is a magnet in Lüneburg, a great place to enjoy a coffee or beer close to the water in front of typical houses. In winter, you can discover the inside sitting rooms of the cozy restaurants, modern cafés and pubs with live music at weekend nights. You are right at the old harbor. The café Tante Käthe on the street am Stintmarkt offers quite nice breakfast deals during the week.
Main Street: Große Bäckerstraße
The shops are the same in many shopping streets in Germany. But the surrounding and in Lüneburg is probably more of a pleasure for your eyes, than in many Northern German cities. Lüneburg is alive. People actually live there. The streets are busy. Feel the vibrant flair and discover interesting details on old houses’ fronts. But also the small lanes with unique shops are worth a walk.
Coffee, lunch, dinner or drink: Schröderstraße
You are looking for a place to have lunch, dinner, a coffee or a drink in the city center? Check out the Schröderstraße with nice cafés and bistros. We especially enjoyed the Café Central.
Get up to the water tower viewing platform
In almost every touristy place, I love to climb up something to get a nice overview of the city and take some pictures. In Lüneburg, the water tower is the perfect place for that. The viewing platform offers great photo opportunities. The 56 meters high tower has been built between 1905 and 1907. A lift will take you up to the sixth floor, from where you have to take 20 more steps on the stairs. Okay, it really costs 4,50 Euros for an adult to get up, but if you also want to see the German Salt museum, you can save money by getting a combined ticket for the two museums. And the water tower in Lüneburg is more than a viewing platform. Also check out the calendar for jazz concerts and art exhibitions in the water tower.
- Find all information about the water tower in Lüneburg here.
Feel the beating heart of Lüneburg: Am Sande
The square Am Sande is a popular and central square, where you will cafés, city bus stops, and some cool unique shops. It feels like the beating heart of Lüneburg.
Back to Medieval Times in Lüneburg
I was really surprised to see, that Lüneburg has to offer complex old city parts. The area around the square Johann-Sebastian-Bach-Platz and St. Michaelis Church is one of the must see sights of Lüneburg. Walk around the small streets and imagine to live in one of the old houses. Even a nice experience in the evening hours.
Things to do in Lüneburg
- Lüneburg has a number of parks surrounding the old town, worth to get checked out on warm spring and summer days. Play minigolf at the “Kurpark”, chill in “Clamart Park”, “Bastion” or “Liebesgrund”.
- Rent a city bike to discover Lüneburg individually. You need to register first here. Unfortunately, the website is just in German. But the advantage is: The first 30 minutes are always for free.
- Visit the German Salt Museum in the street Suelfmeisterstr. 1, open daily from 10am to 5pm. The regular price is 7 Euros, including the guided tour 8,50 Euros. Find reviews on Trip Advisor.
- If you are interested in art, check out the exhibition halls of the Kulturbäckerei or find out more about the called Halle für Kunst with regular exhibitions, Reichenbachstraße 2.
- English movies in the cinema: The Scala cinema shows movies in the original language with German subtitles. You find the program here. https://www.scala-kino.net/filme
- No plans for the night? Find tips for parties, concerts and much more on the website of popular clubs and locations like Garage, in the Pub Old Dubliner or every Saturday night in the Celtic Pub, Pesel or Salon Hansen
- Be there for the free public Medieval Street Festival in the old city center. It’s called “Suelfmeistertage” and gets celebrated once a year with musicians, artists, food and fun. The next edition takes place from 28th to 30th of September 2018.
- Festival fans can try A summer’s tale close to Lüneburg every year in August.
- Visit the really helpful tourist information in the city hall to get a free city map of Lüneburg and information about sights, events and guided city tours in English.
Hostels and campsites in Lüneburg
- Lüneburg is not the cheapest place to live, eat or sleep. To get a cozy social traveler place, try the hostel Salzquartier close to the train station. Beds in the dormitory start from 24 Euros per person. Double rooms are available.
- Camping fans can try the Campsite Rote Schleuse, reachable by bus or bike from Lüneburg city center.