Many nicknames have been given to the 1200 year old city in the heart of Germany and the centre of Europe bearing testimony to the rich and colourful past of Magdeburg: Cathedral City, Hanseatic City, Fortress City, City of the New Building Movement, Luther City, Magnetic City, Elbe City, City of Parks and Gardens, City of Otto von Guericke, Sports City, City of Science and "Magdeburg – City of Otto the Great".
Whichever name you prefer, you will find that Magdeburg is a city full of surprises.
From the first Gothic cathedral erected on German soil to the "smartest" tower in the world in the Elbauenpark – Magdeburg offers an impressive insight into the cultural and intellectual history of mankind Visitors quietly enjoying the great works in the Art Museum of the Monastery of Our Lady or joining in on music festivals in the streets contribute to the fact that the cultural life of the city is surprisingly diverse and colourful. Whether you prefer to sit in silence in one of the churches of the old city centre or go on a shopping spree in the modern bustling shopping centres, Magdeburg amazes with its variety of experiences.
Magdeburg was once the cradle of the German Nation. Otto the Great, the first Holy Roman Emperor, made Magdeburg his favourite palatine, commissioned the erection of a mighty cathedral as well as elevated the city into an Archbishopric despite all opposition. The city shaped up to become a centre of the Christian occident where Magdeburg was home to the Oberhof, a supreme authority which played a major role in the history of medieval legislation.
Martin Luther preached in Magdeburg where he turned the city into an important protestant stronghold; Otto von Guericke invented the air pump as well as discovered the vacuum; the Baroque composer Telemann wrote his first opera in Magdeburg; the engineer Hermann Gruson introduced chilled cast iron products, a breathtaking development in mechanical engineering; Hans Grade carried out the first German motorised flight attempt in the Cracauer Anger area and the engineer Rudolf Nebel made first attempts to promote the launch of a rocket with a human passenger on board.
Magdeburg Cathedral is the undisputed architectural gem of the capital city. There is no other place in the city where the old and the new as well as tradition and modernity come face to face so impressively. When THE GREEN CITADEL® OF MAGDEBURG, the last architectural project by the famous artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, was completed in 2005, it offered a pleasing contrast to the unique architectural legacy which had evolved over the past 1000 years, including the Gothic cathedral, the Romanesque monastery, the Baroque city Palais as well as modern buildings.
However there is more to the city than just this attraction. Magdeburg displays a colourful variety of architectural styles where Baroque town houses, stunning Gründerzeit architecture and several buildings in Art Nouveau style as well as the influence of the New Building movement under the famous architect Bruno Taut, the Zuckerbäcker or the Postmodern style have contributed to compose the face of the city.
In addition, the second greenest city in Germany provides many excellent opportunities for long walks, bicycle tours and picnics. The many stately parks and gardens, the river Elbe running through Magdeburg and the wide scenic river landscape combine to offer relaxation, sporting activities and cultural events for everyone.
In addition to the Monastery and various churches, Magdeburg Cathedral continues to be the landmark of the city, dominating the historic city centre. It forms the centrepiece of the Romanesque Road, a popular tourist route taking you through Saxony-Anhalt with its abundance of ancient castles, monasteries and picturesque churches.
The city is home to theatres, museums, galleries and comedy venues and has an active cultural scene which adds to the variety of entertainment choices.
Magdeburg thrives on its diversity and is an excellent place to spend some hours in a pleasant atmosphere. And when the days are longer and the evenings warmer you have absolutely no reason to stay at home. There is a whole lot going on in Magdeburg: imaginative summer theatre in historical settings, opera and operetta performances on the lake stage, glowing hot air balloons in the Elbauenpark, classical concerts in various parks as well as the Park Jazz Festival.
In Magdeburg you need not only be a spectator. Why not take part in the many sporting activities Magdeburg has to offer: cycling along the Elberadweg, the most popular German cycle path, canoe or dragon boat trips on the river Elbe, riding and golfing in the Herrenkrug area or jogging and skating in the Stadtpark Rotehorn as well as much more.
|© Landeshauptstadt Magdeburg|
Due to the new Port of Science and the modern Denkfabrik as well as innovation and start-up centres and application-oriented scientific institutes such as the Fraunhofer Institute, the Experimental Factory, the Max Planck Institute, the Leibniz Institute and the Centre for Neuroscience Innovation and Technology, Magdeburg has made a name for itself as an innovative science and research location.
Magdeburg is one of the biggest cities to be found in East Germany with 230 000 inhabitants and covering an area of 200 km².