Freiburg, originally known as Freiburg im Breisgau, is a city tucked away in the Black Forest of Germany’s southern fringes.
Getting to Freiburg should not be a hassle. You can either reach the city by train, flight, or by road. Given you have the proper papers if you’re visiting from another country as a tourist.
If you are getting to Freiburg by car, stick to the A5 autobahn, which runs along the Rhine Valley.
Once you are in Freiburg, getting around places will not be an issue because the city’s public transport system is very accessible wherever you may be. You can easily access the buses, trams, and light trains that can be found all over the designated routes.
Freiburg is considered a focal point for regional tourism since it’s near the Black Forest and has beautiful scenery and pleasant weather. Once there, you can expect to see buildings influenced by early German architecture and also the churches and cathedrals spread across the city. You can see the streets paved with cobblestones, and you can lay your eyes on the gothic and renaissance-influenced architecture all over the main city streets.
It is an ideal city to visit where you can take all your family, friends, and loved ones of all ages around. You can go sightseeing looking at a multitude of magnificent buildings filled with history, and bask yourself in its scenic beauty with incredible, breathtaking views. You also have the advantage of taking a trip to the Black Forest since it is very close by and easily accessible through Freiburg.
To make your trip unforgettable, here’s a list of 19 best things to do in Freiburg, Germany!
19. Japanischer Garten
The Japanischer Garten is a traditional Japanese garden located in the Seepark area in Freiburg. The Japanese garden was built in 1990 from a partnership with the city of Matsuyama, Japan.
It is one of the most tranquil places in the city. It gives off a calming aura and peace of mind, which traditional Japanese gardens are designed to do so.
You can visit this garden with your friends and family to have a day of outing and picnic. There is a large fish pond where you can feed the fish too. It also has a mini waterfall with small benches by the sidewalks. It is a well-maintained garden with lots of green plants and trees. What it lacks in space, it makes up for it by quality.
If you are around the Seepark area, make it a priority to visit this small but very pleasant garden.
The Schwarzwald-Stadion is the main football stadium for the city of Freiburg. It is home to SC Freiburg, and the team plays in the Bundesliga.
The stadium was inaugurated in 1953, and it holds up to 24,000 people. SC Freiburg has been playing their home games at this stadium ever since. The turf is lush green and glimmers magnificently on a sunny day.
You can catch home matches here while SC Freiburg is playing. The crowd atmosphere is electric and lively. Drinks like beer and soda are available to go along with snacks while watching the game. You might get the chance to have a memorable experience while supporting any football club.
Even though the stadium is old school, it has every bit of the city’s football history attached to it, which makes it mandatory to visit the Schwarzwald-Stadion on your check list.
17. Museum Natur und Mensch
Museum Natur und Mensch is a museum that focuses mainly on nature and animals. The exhibitions are primary displays of how the nature of animals behave and exist.
It is an excellent museum to take your kids and young ones to educate them briefly on how animals of all types live. Even adults can learn something too.
You can have the opportunity to have an educational experience on any form and level of nature, animals, their eco system, and how they co-exist. It is a fun learning experience, and the museum caters to people of all ages with no restrictions.
The museum composes of three floors:
Animals and nature
Minerals and fossils
Local and urban myths
But all the descriptions are in German, so you better have a translator with you if you plan to visit this museum.
16. Museum Of Modern Art
The Museum of Modern Art, or to the locals, known as Museum für Neue Kunst, is a museum established in 1902 serving as an extension for Female Educational and Etiquette Institute, which was found around 1802.
The museum displays all kinds of art, ranging from modern to contemporary art. It also has a number of sculptures and statues, which is also modern art-inspired.
Entry prices are usually 5€-7€, and it’s open on all dates except Monday. The open hours are always from 10 am to 5 pm.
The Museum Of Modern Art is a charming establishment with a good number of displays. The art selection is diverse, and the interiors are subtle. It is a perfect location to visit if you are someone who is into modern and contemporary art.
The Deitenbachsee is a lake located in the Weingarten district of Freiburg. Road construction took place near the area in 1981, resulting in the formation of the lake. Since then, it had been a place of attraction for all the local residents and tourists alike, as it is located not far from the city center.
The asphalt roads make it inviting for cyclists to go on cycling runs over the lake. You can also take a dip in the waters with your friends and families as the shallow parts are safe.
During the evenings, you can enjoy a pleasant walk around the lake and also do your exercises to unwind the day. There are lots of trees so you can sit under the shade and have a mini picnic with your loved ones.
To get to the lake, you can get ply the tram as the tram line passes by it or by road or walking.
14. Universität Freiburg Botanical Garden
The Universität Freiburg Botanical Garden is a botanical garden which is located in the Herden district in the city of Freiburg.
The botanical garden was founded in 1620 by the University of Freiburg. So it’s a very important historical institute in the city’s history. The garden went under renovation in 1766 and was even abandoned at one point in time. But members from the university and the government have restored it back to its old glory and made it open to the public.
If you’re a person who is into flowers and plants of all kinds, visiting this place while you’re in the city is a must. The Freiburg botanical garden is just half an hour’s walk from the main city center.
There, you can see information about botanical plants and where they originated from. It is a peaceful place where you can go through all the plants and flowers or just have a nice and quiet afternoon, eating lunch. It’s open to the public from 8 am to 6 pm so you should have enough time to learn what you’re interested in.
13. Stadtgarten Freiburg
The Stadtgarten, which translates to ‘city garden’, was built and established in the year 1887.
The park has lots of artistic monuments and sculptures from various artists that can be dated back to the 1800s. It also has several fountains placed all across the park.
You can even catch a glimpse of musical artists performing in the music pavilion. The music pavilion was built in 1969. There, local artists and entertainers perform their gigs if there are events in the park.
The park also has a duck pond where you can feed the ducks and take some time to relax and enjoy the tranquility of the garden.
It’s an ideal place to take kids to make them play around while you sunbathe or read your books under the shade of the countless trees.
The Bertoldsbrunnen is a historical landmark in Freiburg. This landmark’s main attraction is the water fountain, where a sculpture is located on top of the fountain.
You can say that The Bertoldsbrunnen is both a historical and a geographical landmark, and it was first built in 1806 and has been left in the same way as it is now.
Around the water fountain, you can find lots of shops, cafes, and other stalls surrounding it. You can even see street performances and events if you happen to visit during the right time of the day.
The street which passes The Bertoldsbrunnen has a route for trams too so that you can get to this tourist attraction with no hassle.
During evenings, you can see the streets lit up with people shopping or going about their daily work, and you can see street artists performing with their instruments.
11. Opfinger See
Opfinger See is a lake on the outskirts of Freiburg where a cycling route also runs beside it.
If you’re a cycling enthusiast, you can hire a cycle with your friends and cycle through the roads that run along the Opfinger See. The views are particularly interesting where you can catch some good sights while going along the way.
There’s also the lake where you can dip during a sunny day or also swim laps across the giant body of water. There are shallow areas, so you can bring kids to play too. Or you can simply bathe in the sun and have a relaxing afternoon under the pleasant weather.
The lake is also an excellent place for outdoor picnics and barbecues. It’s an exceptional place to bring your loved ones out on the weekends where you can wind up, relax and chill with the sun setting over the glittery waters of the lake.
The Colombischlössle is an archaeological museum located in the old part of the city. The museum’s manor was built around 1859, and the construction was completed in 1861. There is also a park to compliment the manor in an aesthetically pleasing way.
The museum is loaded with historical artifacts and depicts how humanity has evolved over the centuries. They also represent how technology has made its way into our lives and how it makes a difference for good or worse.
You can take a stroll in the park and check out the garden to maintain rare trees and plants.
The estate gives off a tranquil aura where you can set your mind to rest and give yourself a break from the outside world.
It is an excellent destination if you are interested in history and want to taste what life in the 1800s would be like by visiting the manor and the gardens surrounding it.
9. Augustiner Museum
The Augustiner Museum was officially constructed in the year 1903. The museum first made it open to the public in 1923.
After 2004, renovation and reconstruction of the museum took place.
The exhibition consists of medieval paintings, altarpieces, stained glass displays, and sculptures. They also display Renaissance-era art and monuments.
The general collection is very diverse and well maintained. So, if you are a historical art buff, you’ll have yourself a great time and get lost in the magnificence of the museum.
The architectural design and pattern of Freiburg are also existent in this museum. There are several representations of the church through art pieces and statues.
You can avail of guided tours to get exclusive insight and know more about the museum’s history and the art pieces.
The Schauinsland is a mountain located in the Black Forest. The mountain is 1284 meters above sea level. It was a mountain mainly used for mining back in the old days. People mostly mined silver and zinc during the turn of the 14th century. Mining was so significant that there’s a mining museum where the public and tourists can visit.
You can also get a panoramic view of the city of Freiburg from the Schauinsland. You can get to the mountain either by car, by hiking, or by cycling. There is also a cable car service, which takes about 25 minutes to get to the top.
The Schauinsland is an ideal tourist destination for people of all ages, old or young. You will get a chance to have a terrific view of the city if the weather is clear enough on a good day. It’s also a popular location for picnics and other recreational activities.
7. Aussichtsturm Schlossberg
The Aussichtsturm Schlossberg is an observation tower located in the Castle Hill area on the outskirts of Freiburg. The tower was built in 2002, and it is 35 meters high.
From the tower, you can get a full 360-degree view of the city of Freiburg. The view from the top of the building is astonishing, and if you go on time, you can catch a glimpse of the sunset, which sets over the horizon of the mountains covering the city.
You can either take the full hike up to the tower base or hire a tram, which will cost you 5€. There are around 200 steps to climb if you want to get to the top. From there, the hike will be worth it because of the view you can get to experience. But to get to the top of the observation tower, you should have the stomach for heights.
6. Martin’s Gate
Martin’s Gate or The Martinstor is a city gate that was built during medieval times. Studies say that the establishment of the building dates back to as early as 1202.
To the center of the gate, you can see an inscription that details the execution of three witches during the year 1599.
You can notice slight gentrification changes on the streets, with modern-day shops and restaurants standing out below the gate despite its history.
The cobblestone streets are also filled with small cafes where you can get delicious local treats with coffee. You can also get to try the many varieties of beer in these cafes.
You can make use of the city trams as they run underneath the Martin’s Gate. There are good opportunities to take photos as the Main Street, which runs under the gate, is surrounded by stunning architecture that maintains its natural heritage throughout the fabric of time.
Seepark is a park which is located in the Betzenhausen district. The people of the city officially constructed it in 1986.
It has a human-made lake and also serves as a recreational center for local residents. It also has a football field next to the lake.
The park has a beer garden where you can sit back and relax and watch the view as the sun sets over the horizon. You can also play some games of mini-golf if you’re into that.
You can also climb a small but intricately-built lookout tower that sits right beside the lake. You can hire boats if you want to pedal across the lake and also take a dip during a hot summer afternoon.
There is a rose garden on the eastern part of the park where you can take a walk through the flowers planted or stop and smell them.
4. Freiburg Bächle
Freiburg’s streets are all connected with small water channels, and these are called the Freiburg Bachle. The Bachle were originally constructed to fight fires in which the residents used them as a source of water.
They were also built to efficiently supply water to all the area inhabitants since it was hard to find drinking water during old times. So over time, the Bachle kept expanding, either to provide more water supply or a source of water for local animals that needed it.
The Bachle contributes to adding a picturesque effect that runs along the streets. They are a pleasant sight to see. You can sit by a food stall or roadside restaurant while you’re sipping a coffee and listen to the water flowing through the Bachle, which adds a very calming effect on your mood.
Legend has it that if you unknowingly step on the Bachle, you will eventually marry a resident of Freiburg. So, either tread with caution or step your foot into it intentionally if you are fascinated with the city.
Schwabentor is a historic city gate in Freiburg. It is a landmark easily accessible to the public and is a five-minute walk from the train station.
It is also known as Obertor or the Swabian Gate.
The Schwabentor was built in 1250 and was initially built to make it the primary entrance for travelers from the Black Forest route. The council renovated the gate in 2013 to repair the extensive damages inside the structure.
There is a private museum inside the Schwabentor which displays depictions of the city’s history. You can take a trip to this museum to educate yourself on a quick history lesson. The tower has a large clock that everyone on the street can look at.
It is an ideal place to visit whether it’s in the daytime or evening. There are shopping and dining options stretched along the street, so you need not worry about your dinner after visiting the Schwabentor.
2. Münsterplatz (+ Münstermarkt)
Münsterplatz is the main, central district of Freiburg. It is the area adjacent to the Freiburg Cathedral.
On this city square, you can find the main library and also numerous street vending stalls. The stalls deal in fresh vegetables and fruits, and even fresh flowers. The street vendors also sell local-made food products and household items. You can also grab a bite to eat from the local food vendors. All these stalls cover the Freiburg Minster.
During World War 2, Nov 27, 1994, to be exact, the buildings located in Münsterplatz were mostly destroyed by air bombings. Surprisingly, the Minster was left unscathed during those air raids.
The market place is open for most parts of the year. You can easily find local souvenirs and memorabilia in these marketplaces.
It is an ideal place for taking strolls after sightseeing and a great place to end your day.
1. Freiburg Cathedral
The Freiburg Cathedral, known as Freiburg Minster, is the primary cathedral of the city, and one of the most popular cathedrals in Germany. The architectural style of the cathedral is from the Gothic era. The construction of the building took place in 1200 and ended around 1513.
The cathedral is accessible to the public, and you can climb the whole spire all the way through. While up there, you can see the panoramic view of the city. It also has an ancient clock and a bell, which dates back to historical times since the people of Freiburg built it.
While you’re inside the cathedral, you can hear the four-pipe organs being played by the organist. You can soak in the sounds while it echos through the whole body of the building.
The stained glasses are also a sight to see, and you can analyze all the intricate details with pieces of history attached to it.
There’s also a marketplace in the square where the cathedral is located. It sells all kinds of goods and memorabilia.