One day in Würzburg
This weekend was my first official visit to Würzburg, which is weird, considering I only live about 1.5 h from it now. But maybe this is the thing about cities or attractions being “just around the corner”: you always think about going but never end up going for real since it’s always “there”. Since my main reason going was to visit a friend, I had about half a day to explore the city, which is not enough to see everything, but it’s a start.
First on our list was the Marienberg Fortress, which is one of the most popular landmarks in Würzburg and was home to the prince-bishops for over 5 centuries. The Fortress was built in the 13th century, but additional buildings were added up to the 18th century. Fun Fact: the only army/attacker who ever conquered the Fortress were the Swedish during the Thirty Years’ War. To get there, you can walk up the “Marienberg” from the city center – be aware it’s quite a hike. Especially during the summer month (it was 35 degrees Celcius when we walked up there on the Saturday), take water with you there are a lot of stairs. But it’s totally worth it and the view makes up for everything. Since we didn’t have too much time, we decided to take a tour. The 45-min. guided tour was only 3.50 € and very informative. Our tour guide was super sweet and answered all our questions. Besides the tour, there is also a museum that you can visit, which contains Franconian art – due to time issues we didn’t. If you don’t want to take the tour, most of the places are free to visit. Make sure to check out the garden, it gives you an amazing view over downtown Würzburg and surrounding.
On our way back to the downtown we automatically crossed the “Alte Main Brücke” (Old Main Bridge) which dates back to 1130 and was rebuilt as a stone bridge around the 1540s. Since 1730, 4.5 m high statues of saints and important people were added to the bridge. It had to be reconstructed after World War II, when the US soldiers destroyed parts of it. If you happen to be there, make sure to take advantage of the “Brückenschoppen”, which is a tradition where you basically drink wine on the bridge during the day. You can buy different kinds of wine and just enjoy the sun and the surroundings. If you are not a wine lover (like me) and prefer beer, you can rest and eat lunch in the “Alter Kranen” beer garden directly on the Main River waterside: I can recommend the “Currywurst” and the “Flammkuchen”.
On our way to the Würzburger Residence, we just strolled through downtown which is super nice. You can visit some of the churches (including the St. Kilian Cathedral) or take a look at the different local shops. The Residence was built between 1720 and 1744 by the prince-bishops, since they wanted a new and more modern building compared to the Marienberg Fortress. Large parts of the Residence were also destroyed during World War II and was rebuilt afterwards. In the 1980s the Baroque Palace was even added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. There is an audio guided tour offered daily which costs 7.50 € for adults which gives you access to the building at the over 400 rooms. Sadly we didn’t manage to do the tour, since the last tour starts at 5.30 and the palace closes at 6 pm. This is definitely a reason to come back! We were able to visit the court gardens, which are free of charge and open to the public until 8 pm. If you are visiting, allow at least 3 hours for the Residence and the court gardens to have a chance to see everything.
Fun Fact for film lovers: parts of The Three Musketeers with Orlando Bloom, Milla Jovovich and Christoph Waltz were filmed in the Residence.
Of course a few hours or even a day is not enough to see everything there is to see in Würzburg. But we managed to visit the most famous landmarks, even though I’m still sad, we were not able to go inside the Residence. Like mentioned above: now I already have a reason to go back 😊 If you want to know more places to visit in Bavaria, check out my blog post about castles and lakes.
If you have any questions or feedback please comment down below or contact me, I’m always looking forward to hearing other people’s experiences or answer questions. If you want to see more pictures, please check out my Instagram Account as well.