Discovering Hannover and its Surrounding Historic Cities
Located in Lower Saxony, Germany, Hannover (also known as Hanover) is a historic city surrounded by several other cities that are worth visiting. Braunschweig, Celle, Göttingen, Goslar, Hamelin, Hildesheim, Lüneburg, and Wolfenbüttel offer a variety of attractions, including medieval old towns, museums, and art galleries.
The region also has a strong British connection, with six crowned kings and queens all coming from its Royal family. King George I was the first in 1714 and the line continued until 1901 when Queen Victoria died. While this is not the only reason to visit, traces of this history remain in the many castles and country houses peppered throughout the area.
Hanover: The Capital of Lower Saxony
Hanover is the capital of Lower Saxony and home to many of the region’s attractions, such as the Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall) and the city’s beautiful lakes. The city was founded in the 10th century by the Saxons and became a member of the Hanseatic League, a powerful trading alliance of northern European cities, in the 12th century.
However, the city was badly damaged during World War II. Despite this, it has managed to rebuild and preserve much of its history and culture. The city is now a vibrant metropolis with a rich history and plenty of things to see and do.
Hamelin: The Birthplace of the Pied Piper
Hamelin is a charming town located on the River Weser and is famous for being the birthplace of the Pied Piper legend. The town’s medieval old town is well preserved, and visitors can explore the town’s many half-timbered houses and historic buildings.
One of the town’s main attractions is the Piper’s House, which tells the story of the Pied Piper legend through interactive exhibits and displays. Visitors can also take a guided tour of the town to learn more about its history and heritage.
Wolfenbüttel: Home to the Herzog August Bibliothek
Wolfenbüttel is a picturesque town that is home to the Herzog August Bibliothek, one of the world’s oldest and most important research libraries. The library contains over a million volumes, including rare manuscripts and prints, and is a must-visit for anyone interested in history and culture.
The town’s main attractions include the Schloss Wolfenbüttel, a historic castle that is now home to the library, and the Altstadt (old town), with its many charming half-timbered houses and narrow streets.
Hildesheim: The UNESCO World Heritage Site
Hildesheim is a city with a rich history and is home to one of Germany’s best-preserved medieval townscapes. The city is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, thanks to its many historic buildings, including the half-timbered houses, the Market Square, and the St. Mary’s Cathedral and St. Michael’s Church.
Visitors can explore the city’s many museums and galleries, or take a guided tour to learn more about its history and culture. The city also hosts several festivals and events throughout the year, including the famous Hildesheim Christmas Market.
Braunschweig: The City of Henry the Lion
Braunschweig is a historic city that was once ruled by Henry the Lion, one of the most powerful rulers of medieval Germany. The city’s rich history is evident in its many historic buildings, including the Burgplatz (Castle Square) and the Altstadt (old town).
The city is also home to several museums and galleries, including the Herzog Anton Ulrich-Museum, which contains one of Europe’s largest collections of baroque art. Visitors can also explore the city’s parks and gardens or take a stroll along the Oker River.
Celle: The Home of Half-timbered Houses
Celle is a charming town that is famous for its many half-timbered houses, which date back to the 16th and 17th centuries. The town’s Altstadt (old town) is well preserved, and visitors can explore its many historic buildings, including the Celle Castle and the Stadtkirche (Town Church).
The town is also home to several museums and galleries, including the Bomann Museum, which tells the story of the town’s history and heritage. Visitors can also take a guided tour of the town to learn more about its fascinating past.
Goslar: The Imperial City
Goslar is an imperial city that was once the residence of several German emperors and kings. The city is home to many historic buildings, including the Kaiserpfalz (Imperial Palace) and the Marktkirche (Market Church).
The town’s Altstadt (old town) is well preserved and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, thanks to its many half-timbered houses and narrow streets. Visitors can also explore the Rammelsberg Mine, which was once one of the world’s largest copper mines.
Göttingen: The City of Science
Göttingen is a city of science that is home to one of Germany’s oldest and most prestigious universities. The city has a rich history and is home to many historic buildings, including the Gänseliesel (Goose Girl) fountain and the St. Johannis Church.
Visitors can explore the city’s many museums and galleries or take a stroll around the Botanic Garden, which is one of the largest in Germany. The city also hosts several festivals and events throughout the year, including the annual Göttingen International Handel Festival.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the best time to visit Hannover?
The best time to visit Hannover is from late spring to early autumn when the weather is mild, and the city is bustling with festivals and events. However, if you prefer fewer crowds, you can visit during the winter months when the city is quieter.
2. What are the must-visit attractions in Hannover?
Some of the must-visit attractions in Hannover include the Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall), the Herrenhausen Gardens, and the Hannover Zoo. You can also explore the city’s many museums and galleries or take a stroll around Maschsee Lake.
3. What is the best way to get around Hannover?
The best way to get around Hannover is on foot or by bike. The city has an excellent network of bike paths and is relatively flat, making it easy to explore. You can also use the city’s buses and trams to get around.
4. What are the best day trips from Hannover?
Some of the best day trips from Hannover include visiting the nearby historic cities of Braunschweig, Celle, Hildesheim, Lüneburg, and Goslar. You can also explore the Harz Mountains or take a trip to the North Sea coast.
5. What is the currency used in Germany?
The currency used in Germany is the Euro (EUR). Most shops, restaurants, and hotels accept credit cards, but it’s always a good idea to have some cash on hand as well.