Attractions and Places to Visit in Erfurt
Erfurt's many churches, chapels and monasteries have earned the city the nickname "Thuringian Rome." And Erfurt is especially famous for playing a significant role in the life of Martin Luther. In the 16th century, Luther spent six years in Erfurt, first studying at the University of Erfurt then living as a monk in the Augustinian Monastery.
In addition to all these great religious sites, Erfurt boasts a lovely medieval city center, the oldest inhabited bridge in Europe (the Krämerbrucke) and a charming Christmas market. It is no surprise, then, that Erfurt is becoming an increasingly popular tourist destination for Germans and non-Germans alike. Yet Erfurt is still much less "touristy" than more famous German cities, so it's a bit quieter and accommodations tend to be more reasonably priced.
Erfurt is dominated by the cathedral and the Church of St. Severus, which stand side-by-side atop a hill called Domberg (“Cathedral Hill”). The cathedral (1154–1476) contains 15th-century glass and numerous notable works of art. Other buildings of note in the city include the Augustinian monastery where Martin Luther was a monk (1505–08), now an orphanage; the Krämerbrücke (“Merchant Bridge”; 1325), lined with houses and shops; the Angermuseum, located in a former custom house of the electorate of Mainz (1705–11), which features Thuringian porcelain and china and paintings by German artists; the palace of the governor of the electorate of Mainz (1711–20); the Teaching Institute (1953–59); and the Medical Academy (1954–59). There is a scientific library containing the Amplonian collection of 1400 and earlier, as well as a library of municipal archives and a natural-history museum. Erfurt also features a municipal zoo. Pop. (2003 est.) 201,645.