German City Profiles

Frankfurt skyline

City Profiles

Looking to visit somewhere new on your next trip to Germany? Check out our city profiles using our interactive map or scroll down for an extensive list which is updated each month.

Aachen Cathedral in the morning light

City Profile: Aachen

At first sight, this small city with only 240,000 inhabitants, surrounded by mountains, forests and hot springs, does not appear to be home to a dynamic university, a UNESCO world heritage site and one of Europe’s best Christmas markets all at the same time.


City Profile: Berlin

Berlin has been the capital city of the united Federal Republic of Germany since 1990. In that time, it has become one of the hippest and most vibrant urban centres in Europe - with a flourishing cultural scene, brilliant nightlife, and a plethora of bars, restaurants, shops and cafes.

View of Bonn from the Seven Hills

City Profile: Bonn

Bonn is a modern, vibrant and cosmopolitan city with over 2000 years of history. It is among the 20 largest cities in Germany and probably best known for being Beethoven's birthplace. It is located directly on the River Rhine and surrounded by the area known as Seven Hills (Siebengebirge). The picturesque old town, around 30 museums and numerous sporting and musical events provide entertainment and authentic "rheinische" joie de vivre.

Bremen in the summer

City Profile: Bremen

Bremen is one of Germany's three city states, made up of the two towns of Bremen and Bremerhaven. It is located in northern Germany and has a population of almost 550,000.

Cologne cityscape

City Profile: Cologne

Covering both banks of the Rhine and home to over a million people, Cologne is the largest city in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Constance embankment

City Profile: Constance

Constance is well known for its medieval old town and its outstanding location by Lake Constance and the river Rhine right next to the Swiss border. With its 82,000 inhabitants, Constance is the largest city by the lake and home to about 17,000 students.

Prince George's Palace

City Profile: Darmstadt

Located in one of Europe’s most prosperous regions, the Rhine-Main-Area, Darmstadt is a hidden champion among German cities. It is an excellent location for science and offers a distinguished history, unique landmarks, as well as vibrant cultural and sporting events to its visitors.

view of Dresden at dusk

City Profile: Dresden

Often referred to as the “Florence on the Elbe”, Dresden is well known for a seemingly inexhaustible number of architecturally significant buildings, major art collections and picturesque landscapes. In addition to that, the capital of Saxony has earned a reputation for being one of the most hip and vibrant cities in the East of Germany.

A bridge over the River Rhine in Düsseldorf

City Profile: Düsseldorf

Düsseldorf is the state capital of North Rhine-Westphalia. An ancient city, founded in 1288, Düsseldorf is famous for its beautiful old town and traditional 'Altbier' beer. However, it is also a vibrant, modern place, bursting with fantastic places to go and things to experience.

Skyline of Essen

City Profile: Essen

Essen is one of the largest cities in Germany's western Ruhr region, or "Ruhrpott" as the Germans like to call it. A former industrial city mainly known for coal mining and steel production, Essen has transformed over the years into a vibrant, modern urban centre, offering more than its traditional image might indicate whilst staying true to its historic roots.


City Profile: Flensburg

Flensburg is the third largest city in the federal state of Schleswig-Holstein. It is Germany’s northernmost city, located less than 10km from the Danish border. This proximity to Denmark as well as to the Baltic Sea which made sea travel an important part of Flensburg’s identity, have characterised the city and its surrounding area.

picture alliance / blickwinkel/M

City Profile: Frankfurt am Main

Set on banks of the river Main in the heart of Germany, banking city Frankfurt is one of Germany's most dynamic and international cities. Known as the “Main Metropolis” due to its impressive modern architecture and high number of banks, the city also boasts a rich cultural history, impressive green spaces and thirteen international schools in the surrounding areas.

Skiing on the Schauinsland mountain near Freiburg

City Profile: Freiburg

The sunniest city in Germany, Freiburg is just a stone's throw away from both France and Switzerland. Founded in 1120 as a free market town, around 230,000 people call Freiburg home.

Hamburg port at dusk

City Profile: Hamburg

Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany, and a German state at the same time. It is well-known for its busy port, which is among the largest in the world, as well as its history as part of the Hanseatic League.

New Town Hall Hanover

City Profile: Hanover

Renowned for the world’s largest industrial fair that takes place every year, the trade fair city of Hanover is one of north Germany's major cities. But whilst the Hanover Messe is a big draw for many visitors, the city has a wide range of attractions for more than just the business community.

Heidelberg Castle

City Profile: Heidelberg

Heidelberg is a picturesque city located in Baden-Württemberg, in the south of Germany. Situated on the bank of the River Neckar and surrounded by the hills of the Odenwald forest, it inspired numerous poets and painters of the Romantic era. Heidelberg is a traditional university town - the University of Heidelberg is the oldest in Germany, and has more than 30,000 students.

The Schlossgarten park in Karlsruhe

City Profile: Karlsruhe

Founded in 1715, Karlsruhe is nicknamed the 'fan city' ('Fächerstadt') due to the distinctive way in which it is laid out - the streets radiate out from the palace which forms the city's core like the creases of a fan. It is also one of Germany's warmest cities, with almost 2000 hours of sun a year!

Kassel Skyline

City Profile: Kassel

Kassel, also occasionally called “Casselfornia” by its inhabitants, is located in the northern part of Hesse. Kassel has an important place in German history and bears many attractions and sights which have recently been awarded the certificate of UNESCO World Heritage sites. Culture, art and history are omnipresent: behind the doors of museums and galleries, in plain sight in the middle of Kassel’s central piazza or even next to streets – such as Joseph Beuys' project “Tree and Basalt” which has shaped Kassel’s alleys and pathways since the 1980s.

Kiel Week, the world's largest sailing event

City Profile: Kiel

Kiel is the capital of the northern German state Schleswig-Holstein and has around 240,000 inhabitants. Founded in the 13th century as "Holstenstadt tom Kyle", the city’s name was changed to Kiel in 1900. Due to its location close to the Baltic Sea, it is an important maritime centre as well as transport hub, probably best known for the annual Kiel Week, the biggest sailing event in the world.

The alps by night at Lake Constance

Regional Profile: Lake Constance

The tri-country-region surrounding Lake Constance is popular for its unique and diverse nature, Mediterranean micro-climate and charming cities. Lake Constance is the largest lake in Germany, bordering both Austria and Switzerland. Numerous old towns and villages surround the lake and offer both inhabitants and visitors incredible views of the astonishingly beautiful and peaceful landscape of the Swiss Alps.

Bird's Eye View on the Bavarian Town of Landshut, Germany

City Profile: Landshut

Set north-east of Munich in the region of Lower Bavaria, Landshut is a picturesque town where tradition meets modernity. With 67,000 inhabitants, the little town feeling is contrasted by a host of events and activities. The historic city centre has a lot to offer but there is even more to explore out and about.

Old town hall on the market square in Leipzig

City Profile: Leipzig

The largest city in Saxony, Leipzig has earned a reputation of being an important centre for culture and business in Germany. Goethe called Leipzig "a little Paris" when he came to study law at its university. Leipzig has a long and well-known history, including the Battle of the Nations in 1813 and mass demonstrations against the GDR regime which contributed to the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989.

Old Lüneburg harbour on the Ilmenau

City Profile: Lüneburg

Famed in medieval Europe for its salt production, today Lüneburg is well-known as a vibrant Hanseatic and student city, offering a wide range of cultural events. With 71,668 inhabitants, Lüneburg is set on the Ilmenau river in the federal state of Niedersachsen. It borders the 7,400 square kilometre heathland area called Lüneburger Heide.

Magdeburg with the River Elbe at night

City Profile: Magdeburg

Magdeburg is the capital of Saxony-Anhalt and with more than 230,000 inhabitants, one of the largest cities in eastern Germany. Today it is considered one of the most dynamic cities in Germany. In addition to its strategic educational position with two universities, the city on the Elbe is also developing rapidly both economically and culturally.

Traditional facades on the main square

City Profile: Mainz

The state capital of Rhineland-Palatinate is best known for being the home town of Johannes Gutenberg, who invented the modern printing press. The history of Mainz dates back to Roman times, when it was founded as a military post in late first century BC. It was also the Romans who introduced wine growing to the area.

Water tower in Mannheim

City Profile: Mannheim

The university town of Mannheim is a multicultural, vivid and creative city located in the south-west of Germany. It is known as square-city (Quadratstadt) because of the special way the streets are laid out – similar to Manhattan. With its 300.000 inhabitants, Mannheim is the third largest city in Baden-Württemberg.

The Rhine at Bacharach

Regional Profile: Middle Rhine

The area between Bonn and Bingen am Rhein boasts around 40 more or less intact castles surrounded by vineyards and small traditional vine-growing villages. It is also home to the world-famous Rhine Gorge, or Upper Middle Rhine Valley, which is an area of outstanding natural beauty, and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2002.

The city of Munich

City Profile: Munich

Munich is the capital of the southern German state of Bavaria. Amongst the most economically successful and fastest-growing cities in Germany, Munich is a vibrant, cosmopolitan city, home to the headquarters of numerous corporations such as BMW, Siemens and Allianz. It was rated 2010's "most livable city" by Monocle Magazine.

Heilig-Geist-Spital in Nuremberg

City Profile: Nuremberg

Founded in 1050, Nuremberg is situated in the Bavarian region of Franconia, in southern Germany. With a population of around 510,000, it is Bavaria's second largest city after Munich. World-famous for its rich history and local specialities such as its Bratwurst (sausage), in recent times Nuremberg has become a vibrant and modern city with much to offer.

A view of Passau from the air

City Profile: Passau

Passau is an attractive university city not far from the Bavarian Alps, and is home to a wide range of events and attractions, as well as three different rivers! It is also known for having the most pubs of any city in Germany, relative to its size, and contains not one but three breweries - the Löwenbrauerei, the Hacklberg Brewery and the Andorfer Brewery.

Sanssouci Palace

City Profile: Potsdam

Ambling along the historic palaces and parks of Potsdam, can feel like travelling to a bygone era. Designated as a World Heritage Site, Potsdam’s charming flair arises largely from its cultural uniqueness and its outstanding landscapes. Occasionally, Potsdam is mistaken as part of Berlin due to its close proximity to the German capital.

View of Rostock

City Profile: Rostock

Building upon its tradition as an old Hanseatic university city and located in the far north of Germany, Rostock is the perfect place to get in touch with the northern way of life.

Sunset in the Ruhr region

Regional Profile: Ruhrpott

The Ruhr area – or "Ruhrpott", as Germans affectionately call it – is a former industrial area centrally located in North-Rhine-Westphalia. The region takes its name partly from the river Ruhr, which runs south of this densely populated region. Meanwhile, the word "Pott" comes from "Kohlenpott" (meaning "coal pot") and alludes to the area’s coal-mining past.


City Profile: Siegen

Siegen is located at the point where the German Länder (or states) of North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse and Rhineland-Palatinate meet. The town is often nicknamed 'Rubens City', thanks to its most famous inhabitant - the Flemish painter Peter Paul Rubens. Around 100,000 people live there today.

Vineyard and residential district in Stuttgart city centre

City Profile: Stuttgart

Stuttgart is the birthplace of the motorbike and the automobile - several world-famous brands are based here, including Mercedes-Benz, DaimlerChrysler, Porsche and Maybach. Located in Baden-Württemberg, a state in south-western Germany, Stuttgart is home to roughly 600,000 people, which makes it the 6th largest city in Germany.

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Germany's Top Tourist Attractions

Eibsee and the Zugspitze in Bavaria

View the Top 10 Top Tourist Attractions in Germany, as voted for by visitors to Germany. The 2016 list includes picturesque Heidelberg Castle and old quarter, Neuschwanstein Castle, Europa Park and many more.

Discover the German Fairytale Route

A woman and child dressed in traditional costumes from the Schwalm region, where the Brothers Grimm collected some of their fairytales

Once upon a time in Germany - 1812, to be precise - the first edition of "Children’s and Household Tales" by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm was published. In total, they collected more than 200 fairy tales from different regions in Germany.

The Black Forest


The Black Forest is a wooded mountain range in Baden-Württemberg, a federal state in the south-west of Germany. Some of the highest mountains include Feldberg (4,898 ft), Herzogenhorn (4,642 ft.) and Schauinsland (literally meaning "look into the countryside", 4,213 ft).

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Heidelberg Castle

Here we've put together a selection of the German National Tourist Board's best resources and initiatives - such as the BarrierFree Germany project, which promotes easy and accessible travel for disabled visitors.

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Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

The Länder (or federal states) of eastern Germany are becoming increasingly popular with international visitors. Find out why that is and what there is to see in the eastern parts of Germany.