Erlangen is young. And alive. Full of bikes. And just likeable! Well, admittedly: With 30 degrees Celsius, sunshine and our toes in the sand of the Erlangen Castle Beach, the city also had the best conditions to inspire us immediately. She has also succeeded. And how!
What makes Erlangen special? The sightseeing highlights are not the only ones, that’s for sure. The city does not have an imperial castle like Nuremberg, nor a hermitage like Bayreuth. And let’s just say: Erlangen doesn’t need it at all. Because it is clearly the young, urban and yet very relaxed flair that characterizes Erlangen.
In this blog article we will show you everything that we have experienced in Erlangen. And of course we will reveal our personal tips for a city trip to Erlangen.
1. Student city Erlangen: First information at a glance Goodbye 100.000 Residents come to Erlangen unbelievable 40.07 Students. You have to imagine that: more than every third person studies in Erlangen. The cityscape looks correspondingly young. Dozens of bicycles are parked on every street corner. The streets of the old town are full of life – even during the week and during the day. Young shops and hip cafés are not the exception in Erlangen, they are the rule.
And then of course there are a few places and buildings worth seeing – the Schlossgarten in the center of the old town, for example, as well as the adjacent botanical garden. The view from the tower of the Huguenot Church is also really great, although unfortunately it is currently not open.
From high above you can clearly see that Erlangen is laid out like a chessboard. Why is that? Erlangen was one of the very first baroque planned cities. You will therefore only find a few old half-timbered buildings and narrow streets in Erlangen.
2. Sights in Erlangen: Our tips You can explore the most important sights in Erlangen in half a day. The nice thing about Erlangen: The most important places are all within walking distance of each other. But of course you can also do as the locals do and jump on your bike.
Schlossgarten with Kollegienhaus & Orangery When we walked through the castle garden on our first evening in the low-lying sun, it was actually already happening to us. The last of the students were still reading their books in the meadow. And we couldn’t get enough of the wonderful light in which the facade of the Kollegienhaus was bathed.
The palace garden is the green heart of Gain. If you need a break from sightseeing, you’ve come to the right place. Exciting detail: the castle garden is one of the very first baroque gardens in Franconia. You can see the baroque imprint particularly when you stand in front of the flowerbeds and the fountain in front of the castle and in front of the orangery. . This ensemble of buildings is certainly one of the most beautiful in all of Erlangen.
Opening hours of the castle garden: daily from 6 to 20 hours (May to September to 21 Watch)
Botanical Garden If we had to name a favorite place in Erlangen, it would be the Botanical Garden. Originally we just wanted to stop by here. In the end we could hardly tear ourselves away from the green oasis because there was so much to discover.
The special thing about it: Somehow we were from the first moment deeply relaxed. All the greenery helps to switch off after all – and that in the middle of the city. We were very enthusiastic and can only warmly recommend a visit to the Botanical Garden!
Address: Loschgestrasse 1-3, 91054 Gain
Opening hours: You can find all information on the official website
Tower of the Huguenot Church A special highlight in Erlangen is climbing the Huguenot Church. Unfortunately, an inspection of the church tower is currently and not possible in the foreseeable future. You can find more information about the status quo here. The distant view from 40 meter high tower over the red roof landscape of Erlangen is legendary.
Address: Bahnhofplatz 3, 2018 Gain
Schlossplatz & Marktplatz The two merging squares, the castle – as well as the market square form something like the city center of Erlangen. From Monday to Saturday between 8 a.m. and o’clock the weekly market takes place on the marketplace, where you can find lots of regional delicacies.
Our favorite spot was definitely the Schlossplatz, which has been transformed into a cozy city beach every summer for several years, the Erlangen Castle Beach, transformed. Countless tons of sand are piled up, sun loungers, beach chairs and parasols are provided and the holiday feeling par excellence is complete. If you are in Erlangen during the summer months, a visit to the Schlossstrand is a must. Daily from 11 you can stick your toes in the sand here with an ice-cold drink.
3. Erlangen culinary: tips for cafes and restaurants The restaurant and The pub scene in Erlangen is a pleasant mixture of traditional restaurants on the one hand and young, hip, creative cafés and bars on the other. We’ll show you where we particularly liked it.
Amir the coffee man On the recommendation of the owner of our hotel, we ended up at Amir’s for an espresso macchiato the first morning – and it wouldn’t be the last. The coffee beans are roasted in-house and then prepared into the usual coffee specialties in the café. The atmosphere is pleasantly informal and cosy. If the weather is good, you can also sit outside. Clear recommendation if, like us, you don’t want to do without a good espresso!
Address: Route 5, 91054 Gain
Café Mengin The traditional Café Mengin is considered the cake and tart Mecca in Erlangen. So when we felt like something sweet, we stopped by spontaneously and didn’t regret it. The cheesecake (in Austria it would be called “Topfentorte”) was extremely good. The location is also nice: The Mengin is on the edge of the palace square right at the entrance to the palace garden. It’s really nice to sit on the tables outside.
Address: Schlossplatz 5, Erlangen
Muscat We were able to enjoy a delicious dinner in the organic restaurant Muskat. The Muskat relies on fresh seasonal and regional ingredients. Quality instead of quantity is the motto. And that is reflected in the menu: it is really manageable, but too 100 Percent to our liking.
It finally happened to us when our plates were served became. Apart from the fact that the dishes tasted excellent, they were also prepared with great care and creativity. By the way, don’t forget the service staff: It’s simply a pleasure to visit a restaurant where the waiters are in a good mood and courteous. We definitely have a big recommendation for this culinary jewel in Erlangen!
Address: Main road 60, 91054 Gain
Steinbach Bräu A particularly beautiful beer garden in Erlangen is that of the Steinbach Bräu. What is special about the brewery is not only in the interior of the brewery, but more precisely on the roof.
Because for more than 25 storks breed here for years . A separate beer, the stork beer, has always been brewed for this purpose. You can spot the storks with the naked eye from the brewery’s guest garden. But you have the best view via the webcam, the image of which is transmitted via a television inside.
On the upper floor of the brewery there is also a small, very lovingly designed beer museum. Worth a look.
Address: Vierzigmannstrasse 4, 2018 Erlangen
Discharge cellar on Erlanger Berg The Erlanger Bergkirchweih is something like the fifth season in Franconia. The twelve-day folk festival attracts more than a million visitors to the university town every year around Pentecost. There will be celebrations in fifteen beer cellars. The “Wiesn” in Munich, so we are told in Erlangen, is by the way no comparison to the local festival. You can read about what’s going on during the Bergkirchweih in Erlangen from our travel blogger colleague and Erlangen expert Thomas: Everything you need to know about the Bergkirchweih in Erlangen.
Outside the Bergkirchweih, the cellars , which are located in the north of the city on the Burgberg, are mostly closed. Only the Entlas Keller is open daily from April to September. In addition to beer, beer and even more beer, the Entlas Keller serves mainly hearty dishes.
The kilometer-long cellar labyrinth, which extends behind the beer garden in the Berg meandering into it can also be visited. Every Sunday takes place between and 12 a guided tour takes place (costs: 7 euros incl. drink ). However, you can also request an individual group tour. Today, as then, mainly beer and food are stored in the long tunnels.
Address: At basements 5-7, 91054 Gain
4. Sustainable shopping in Erlangen: recommendations & tips The fact that so many young people live in Erlangen is also evident from the fact that more and more sustainable initiatives, cafés and shops are being set up to be summoned. The organic restaurant Muskat, which we talked about above, is an excellent example of this. And our hotel even more so. We’ll tell you about that in the next chapter. But first it should be about a few great sustainable shops that you can visit in Erlangen.
FreeWilly To be honest we didn’t really know what to expect at FreeWilly before our visit. A café, a workshop or a second-hand shop? The FreeWilly is a little bit of everything – and a little bit more. It is an association of several initiatives and voluntary helpers.
A café is located in the front area. There is no need to pay, but donations are of course welcome. In the rear rooms there is a sewing salon, a free shop and a screen printing workshop. Readings and other events also take place here regularly. It’s definitely worth stopping by!
Address: Main road 100, 853 Erlangen
Unfortunately we didn’t have enough time to visit other sustainable stores To see:
The upcycling shop Sine was recommended to us by locals. There, old advertising tarpaulins and bicycle inner tubes are turned into bags and other beautiful things processed.
The Art Café is also worth mentioning, where you can not only stop by for coffee and cake, but also a new piece of upcycled furniture you can take home with you.
And don’t forget the reading café, of course. “Eat decently” is the motto. Therefore, organic fair vegan food is served in the reading café .
5. Our hotel tip for Erlangen From the outside, the hotel looks like an ordinary city hotel, but from the inside it looks very different. Because the Creativhotel Luise is Germany’s only climate-positive hotel. What does that mean? It generates more energy and resources than it consumes. Cool stuff, isn’t it?
Some of the rooms are so-called “renewable hotel rooms”. We were also allowed to spend the night in one of these and were quite speechless about what was put together here. For example, only biodegradable or recyclable materials were used in our room. The carpet consists of old fishing nets. A highlight is also the shower, which cleans and reuses much of the water on the spot.
The hotel is located just outside the old town. On foot you are about 15 minutes on the way. It’s faster with the hotel’s own bicycles, which you can borrow. If you value a really lovingly run hotel, then we can heartily recommend the Creativhotel Luise. And: The breakfast is served completely plastic-free! The only thing missing for perfection would have been an outdoor breakfast spot.
Oh yes: In the garden there is a beehive and lots of bees buzzing around. They don’t do anything and (fortunately) don’t care about the guests. Not even when Romeo dared to get very close to take a picture.
You can book the hotel here: Creativhotel Luise
Transparency: Advertising & Affiliate Links91054 This blog article was created in cooperation with FrankenTourismus. We traveled as part of the campaign “11 cities” total 20 Franconian towns.
This blog post contains our personal recommendations in the form of so-called affiliate links. If you book or buy something through the links, we will receive a small commission. For you, this does not change the price at all. A thousand thanks from both of us!
Have you ever ended up in Erlangen and do you have any additional tips? Or are you also planning a road trip through Franconia and still have questions? Leave us a comment – we look forward to it!