In cooperation with Erfurt Tourismus und Marketing GmbH
It towers over Erfurt like a crown: the Petersberg Citadel. The fortress looks back on a history of over 1,000 years, is one of the largest and the only largely preserved baroque city fortress in Europe. Its star-shaped layout was considered particularly modern and was almost impregnable for enemies. Today, things are different: visitors are welcome and are greeted on the fortress plateau by impressive buildings, a fascinating multimedia exhibition and many other highlights. We present five of them here. You can be sure: The climb up the Petersberg is worth it!
The joy of a visit on the Petersberg begins before you even set foot on the fortress grounds: namely with the ascent on the panorama path. And if you don't necessarily associate the word "ascent" with joy, we can reassure you: It won't be too strenuous, because the designers of the path have thought of everything - for example, many benches along the way that invite you to take a break and linger. The path winds its way up from Domplatz square for about 600 meters, and it bears its name for good reason: a new panoramic view of Erfurt opens up from every loop of the path. Once again, the city lives up to its reputation as a pioneer in terms of accessibility: thanks to a gradient of just three percent, the panorama path can also be mastered by visitors with limited mobility; in addition, a panorama elevator runs daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. up to the plateau.
Reach the plateau, it is only a few steps to the recently reopened Petersberg Citadel Visitor Center. And this is unmissable not only because of its central location, but also because of the great architecture: In a fascinating contrast to the historic buildings, the modern glass facade sparkles, while at the same time the cube blends harmoniously into the entire ensemble.
Here begins your journey of discovery through the history of the fortress: There is all the important information for your visit, maps and tickets for the exhibition in the Kommandantenhaus. An app brings additional audio clips, videos and some surprising information for your tour directly to your cell phone.
Over 1,000 years of fortress history in an exhibition - this may raise the question, especially among the younger members of the family: Isn't that boring? You can be sure: no! On the contrary: the new exhibition in the Kommandantenhaus is interactive, multimedia-based and super modern. This is how an inspiring museum for the whole family works!
There, where once the fortress commander watched over the city, the citadel and his troops, today history comes to life before your eyes. Visitors are welcomed by five characters from different eras. And this adventure tour has it all! Or have you ever built a (virtual) fortress in a museum and moved a real crane? Or played a round of skat like in times gone by? Everyone will get their money's worth here - even and especially the children, because touching and participating are expressly encouraged!
Now it gets mysterious! The so-called listening passages are a relic from the history of the fortress. And their name says a lot about their purpose: In fact, soldiers used to be posted in the narrow passages. Their task: to listen on the walls and sound the alarm if attackers tried to dig a tunnel into the mountain.
Today it goes in and around the citadel and a guided tour through the listening passages is above all a fascinating pleasure. During the tour, which lasts about an hour, you will learn a lot about the eventful history of the city and the impressive building from the guides. When planning your visit, please note that the narrow corridors with many steps are only partially suitable for people with limited mobility. In any case, sturdy shoes and warm clothes are recommended: The temperature in the corridors is around a cool 10 to 15°C all year round.
First, the climb full of beautiful views, then experience culture and history in a fascinating place - what is missing for a perfect trip? Right, a comfortable break and culinary refreshment! On the Petersberg Citadel, several options await you: The Glashütte restaurant resides in a futuristic building on the plateau. From here you can enjoy a great view of Erfurt's old town both from the interior with its large windows and from the terrace. The Peberg Restaurant is part of the Kehrs Hotel on the Petersberg. However, it is also open to visitors who are not staying at the hotel. And it's worth a visit: Chef Rene Gutjahr and his team conjure up fine seasonal dishes with a creative touch.
The enjoyment of wines is the focus of another place of enjoyment on the Petersberg: The new Thuringian Vinarium sees itself as a wine experience site. The focus is on fine wines from all the region's vintners, which can be sampled with a winegrower's snack or a selection of cheeses. The architectural realization of the light-filled space in the Grabenkaponniere I. is also impressive.
By train comfortably and without traffic jams to Erfurt: Plan arrival.
Cover photo: The main access to the citadel: Through the Kommandantenhaus with the impressive Peterstor © Jens Hauspurg
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