The Fuggerei is Augsburg's most famous sight. During the Renaissance, the incredibly wealthy Fugger family dominated the trade in Europe. Their trade empire included many different goods and left traces all over the continent (and even further). In 1521, Jakob Fugger founded the world's first social housing project. For a more or less symbolic rent of 0,88 Euro per year (in today's currency), poor Augsburg citizens could live in the houses. The rent also included several prayers per day for the donator. Interestingly, the rent has stayed the same until today! Compared with rents of as much as 500 Euro per month (!), this is incredibly cheap. So even today, the Fugger's social heritage leaves its traces in Augsburg.
What is there to see? The Fuggerei houses are built in several courtyards with a nice and quiet atmosphere. Most of the buildings are overgrown with wine ranks. One of them houses a museum which gives an interesting overview about the history of the Fugger empire. The museum also displays a typical Fuggerei room of ancient times. Furthermore, there are many plaques on the buildings themselves which inform about the history of the Fuggerei. A nice cafe invites you to stop for a drink or some food.
The entrance fee is 2 Euro.
Bertold Brecht Haus
We just looked at the outside of Bertold Brecht's Haus. We did not have time to go to the museum inside. The house is fairly plain from the front, but looks quite interesting from the back. Brecht was born here in 1898. Across from the museum there is a bar called Brecht's.
Bertolt Brecht's original reason for joining the Communist party in 1928 was that he was very much anti-Nazi, and he thought the Communists were the only ones who stood the slightest chance of preventing the Nazis from coming to power.
In the Brecht House museum there are a number of exhibits showing Brecht's anti-Nazi activities. One of the books in this display case is an American edition, published during the Second World War, called "Six Anti-Nazi One Act Plays" which includes a play by Brecht.
Bertolt Brecht was born in this house on February 10, 1898.
He only actually lived here for about half a year, because the house was very small and crowded, and on the ground floor there was a file-cutter's shop with a loud mechanical hammer that was driven by water power from the stream right in front of the house.
So as soon as Brecht's father could afford it they moved to a larger and quieter house in a street called "Bei den sieben Kindeln".
Two years later, in 1900, they moved again, this time to a house in the street which is now called "Bert-Brecht-Straße". It was given this name in 1966 after years of controversy -- Brecht was a Communist, and for this reason numerous people in Augsburg were against naming a street after him, even if he was a famous author.
A remarkable place, and I don't use that word lightly.
It is a social housing project, started in 1521. It is still operating today, with 150 residents in 140 apartments. Rent is a nominal €0.88, excluding heating.
The Fugger family started it for the needy citizens, and helped rebuild it after it was almost destroyed by bombing during WW2.
Vistors can go down into the bomb shelter (only 1 resident died as result of the Fuggers' foresight in building the shelter). An apartment can be visited, as can the chapel. The complex has a pleasant cafe & gift shop as well.
€4 entrance fee for an adult.
On the red sign in this museum exhibit is one of the many quotable quotes from Bertolt Brecht's writings: "Geld macht sinnlich" (Money makes a person sensuous).
This quotation is actually from a parable called "The round heads and the pointed heads," which was first performed in Copenhagen in 1936:
Gute Mädchen können innig lieben
wenn man ihnen was verehrt
und der Grund ist: Geld macht sinnlich
wie uns die Erfahrung lehrt.
But there is also a similar passage in "The rise and fall of the city of Mahagonny" (1927).
Fuggerei House and Statue
Not far from the townhall is a statue of Jakob Fugger who was once the world's richest man. He is credited with founding the Fuggerei which is the world's first welfare housing project. Low cost housing was provided to poor, deserving Catholic families in return for a nominal rent and a promise to pray for the Fugger family. Fugger's house is behind the statue.
Town Hall Square - Rathaus Platz
This wide open square contains the town hall, the Perlachturm Tower, the Augustus fountain, the tourist information office and some restaurants. I was surprised the area was not pedestrianised. Some sections were dug up, too during our visit.
This is an interesting place for every person who has a Deutche Shaeferhund (German shepherd).
Verein fuer Deutsche Schaeferhunde (the Union of German shepherd owners) has its headquaters in Augsburg.
My wife Irina is a member of LG16 of this Union. This group unites members who are not residents of Germany.
Here is kept Saint Afra's body, but this is not the original grave, lying in the crypt. Follow me there, it's a part you should absolutely not miss if you visit this church.
You can read the story of the saint in the two links below.
Maximilianmuseum collects mostly documents on the history of the city. Particularly important are the original texts of the Peace Treaties of Augsburg (1555) and Westfalen (1648), which ended the religious war in Deutschland after Martin Luther's Protestant Revolution. You will find there also some versions of the Confessio Augustana, the new Lutheran confession, as well as much more.
The museum hosts now also the exhibition Als Frieden möglich war ("When peace was possible"), that informs you about the evolving of religious freedom in Deutschland and in Europe during the centuries.
The bad sides of this museum are the quite high ticket fare (5.50 euro for a student, I think) and the prohibition to take photos.
The museum is close on Mondays.
May I assume that you know about the EMPRESS Elisabeth, nicknamed "Sisi" ??
There is a most wonderful special trip here to make !
It follows her from BAVARIA (where she spent her childhood) via AUSTRIA (Vienna) to HUNGARY......
These are guided tours and for hotels, the dates and hours of departure and the restaurants I advise you to contact:
Regio Augsburg Tourismus
THE COACH COMPANIES you can ask for further information are:
tel. +49 8 21 26 28 88 0
te. +49 8 21 50 22 05 0
reiner reisen, Augsburg
tel. +49 8 21 2 09 02 73
SOMMER IN AUGSBURG.......
Falls Sie sonst keinen eizigen Grund haben nach Augsburg zu kommen - hier sind garantiert einige...........
In case you have no reason to travel to Augsburg, we shall give you a few that are guaranteed:
LA PIAZZA Festival
CONCERTS IM FRONHOF.....
and much, much more to enjoy during the summer months in splendid, friendly AUGSBURG.....yes, I know, I am a GERMANY FAN but I will never exaggerate........you can trust me, my TIPS and my stories......
For more info: CITY INITIATIVE AUGSBURG (CIA) address etc. see below....
Here you see the famous PERLACH TOWER and the TOWN HALL......
It is here that in summer it is fun to enjoy the sun.......but also in WINTER there is a very exciting event that takes place in this market square.
The CHRISTKINDLESMARKT, the famous German Christmas "markets" where it is so fantastic to walk, to buy Christmas gifts, to drink GL?HWEIN and.....when you hear ANGELS sing, don't think it is because you drank a bit more than 1 or 2 glasses of Gl?hwein......no..........you will hear AND SEE real ANGELS..
During the WEEKEND 23 singing (Augsburger) ANGELS will appear in the windows of the famous TOWN HALL.....
You won't believe your eyes and ears.......it must be so touching..........
This FUGGER-STADT ' s CHRISTMAS markets is really one of Germany's finest.....for over 500 years already, imagine that and then do visit.....
Here it is really ALL GOLD THAT GLITTERS and is eyeblinding............this is the famous SPIEGELSAL in the SCHAEZLER Castle.....
This interior is in ROCOCO STYLE, that frankly speaking not one of my favourite styles is.
This is so exuberant that it is tiresome and a bit irritating ....but, that is my experience.....
In this PALACE is a DEUTSCHE BAROCKGALERIE, a special GALERIE with GERMAN PAINTINGS and much, much more...
Then there is :
the MAXIMILIANMUSEUM to visit...
the NEUE GALERIE IM H?HMANN-HAUS
the R?MISCHES MUSEUM
and the STAATSGALERIE in the KUNSTHALLE
and these TREASURES all together are the ST?DTISCHE KUNSTSAMMLUNGEN AUGSBURG!!
Sorry, but you will have to stay a few days longer than you expected to stay here...........and it will be so very worthwhile....
Do enjoy it all!