2021 will be a pivotal year. When I wrote this post nothing was further from my mind that next year the Christmas markets and most world travel would be cancelled due to Covid-19. We need to keep hold of faith and hope as the mutation variant of this thing spreads in the UK. Sadly so many people will not have seen Christmas as cases were already escalating. Let’s see what happens next. In the meantime I visited our local Lidl store and bought chestnuts, delicious stollen cake and mulled wine. We saw in 2021 with German sausages too. So life thank goodness has gone on for us despite everything!
Get here -Well, Posh mum was delighted that Jet2 chartered a one-off flight from Newcastle Airport direct to Nuremberg in December, just enough time to take in the beautiful Nuremberg Christmas Markets as well as historic sites. We upped our game for this visit and selected the most expensive hotel, not because we are really posh by any means – The Sheraton Carlton was so central compared to the others included in the deal – we thought it was worth the extra money to save on travelling time – we were only here for 2 nights and wanted to make the most of every moment. The Sheraton Carlton, on Eilgutstrasse, is very close to the central railway station and easy walking distance to Metro stations and the altstadt, where most of the Christmas markets were going on.
On arrival – Getting from the airport to the hotel was very easy, a single and rapid journey using the Metro cost cents, in fact it hardly burnt a hole in our refreshment budget at all! Get around: Buy a day card for use on the transport network – a bargain if you are there at the weekend is to buy a weekend ticket, good for 2 people – a snip. The vending machines at the main stations provide information in several languages.
Stay here We arrived at The Sheraton Carlton early but the kind gentleman on duty not only provided us with access to our room right away, but upgraded us to the next category room – we had robes and slippers and a lovely huge bath, this turned out to be just the ticket for soothing our bones after intensive exploration of this beautiful and intriguing city. Whilst we are talking about the team here, let me tell you they are all second to none, going out of their way to be pleasant and helpful. There is a neat little cocktail bar near to the restaurant on the ground floor. Breakfast in the restaurant was superb, in fact probably the best we have had in a chain hotel in a long while. Great attention paid to detail, covering hot food to keep it hot, constantly checking that everything was replenished – and a civilised time window within which to take breakfast meant we never experienced crowding. Posh Mum even partook in a glass of bubbly at breakfast, quite setting us up for our days of adventure.
Lunch here – Do go to the Historic Sausage Kitchen on Zirkelschmiedsgasse for genuine Nuremberg sausages cooked over coals, the building was built in 1380 and the first mention of sauseges was in 1419 – it is lively and very busy. We arrived on a Friday lunch time and were squeezed in amongst other diners on a long wooden table. It was bitterly cold but we were soon warmed by the cosy and rustic atmosphere – everything is cooked fresh – and of course Posh Mum can whole heartedly recommend a suitable tincture, perhaps a weissen – dark or blonde wheat beer floats your boat – if not there are plenty of others to choose from.
I have been to Christmas markets within the UK and in Germany, visited those in Cologne – I don’t think any are as pretty as here in Nuremberg. Buy a mug of gluhwein at one of the stalls, for an extra kick ask for a shot – served warm this is wonderful for a freezing cold day. Your first mug includes a deposit of 3 Euro, so you have the choice of keeping your mug for this non-princely sum or returning it for repayment of the deposit. The stalls were full of every speciality – hand crafted figures, christmas decorations, ginger bread and more. However I must say Posh Mum was not pleased at the prices of these items, for example, a carved bird for about 50 euro, many items were over 70 euro. Whilst I noticed local people tucking into gluhwein and sausages, I didn’t spot them buying these items – dare I suggest they are aimed at the coach trip clientele – do get real Nuremberg, make these items affordable and they will sell like hot ginger cakes! I couldn’t help being amused at one of the sausage stall displays:
The atmosphere as the night drew in was fantastic, we heard the choir singing Christmas Carols outside the church in the main square. The pretty stalls were decorated with lights and although it was frantically busy it was a wonderful atmosphere. It is a sad but necessary sign of the times that such things are well-policed, every cross-section was patrolled and officers were plentiful.
Dinner time: There was a delightful Italian resturant right opposite our hotel called The Osteria del Centro – we were very lucky they could squeeze us in on such a busy evening – the team is friendly and the food fantastic. We wound up the evening with a delicious cocktail in the bar back at the Sheraton Carlton. The following evening we found an extremely busy but delicious Indian restaurant – nothing like a bit of heat when you have walked for miles on a freezing winter day. We went to Sangam restaurant on Konigstrasse – we were lucky but if you are here on a weekend you ought to book, this is a busy stretch in a busy city. The food was delicious, I loved getting a little plate of sliced ginger to enhance the dish as I saw fit – Posh Mum loves ginger so I think I used quite a bit of it.
Albrecht Dürer was a pretty major artist around here. Born in 1471, he became known as a painter, engraver and mathematician. Find out more by visiting Dürers house now a museum. Set in a particularly pretty cobbled street area, this district is worth a browse – more pretty churches, antique shops, cosy restaurants and in the distance Nuremberg Castle, dating to the middle ages, and the historic town hall, dating to 1340 is also worth a visit, though if like us you are here for a short time you may have to make some difficult choices of what to see.
Historic associations of Nuremberg Most people who have heard of Nuremberg will know about the post-war crime trials held there after World War 2. Visitors can access the famous court 600 at the museum, although it is still used as a court at the Palace of Justice in which case access would be restricted. The museum provides visitors with headsets available in several languages. The narrative is very detailed and covers all aspects of how the trials came about, where they would be held and who would be present, and of course the many outcomes and judgments made about the perpetrators. Visitors can also go to a separate museum to view the actual documents. It is also worth visiting the immense site of the famous Nuremberg Nazi propaganda rallies, gradually being restored – since its original use the nearby Zeppelin field has hosted massive rock concerts.
More images coming soon, hope you have enjoyed these few snippets! Happy new decade to all my readers and thank you for your interest.