When wandering the city keep an eye open for the various fountains dotted about. These all have tales behind them which give an interesting insight into the city.
Pictured here is the "Fountain of Puppets", each of which represents a different icon of the city, and pic #2 is the city's founding-father Charlegmagne standing on top of his "Pea Bowl".
For an excellent short piece by Sabine Rother about touring these click this link - Aachen Fountains
The historical city centre is too compact and its streets too narrow for tour buses. Of course it is perfectly walkable and the the local tourist office offers a variety of guided tours. If you don't fancy walking though there's this two-wheeled motorised tour available.
I don't have any info as to who runs it but I'm sure the tourist office can give you the gen - www.aachen.de
The actual historical centre of Aachen is quite compact and is ideal for just wandering and everything is well signposted. To get out and about a little further, which is actually not particularly interesting for the general tourist, there's plenty of these easy-to-read street maps dotted around.
Here's the one from the forecourt of the railway station.
The local Tourist Office can be found at:
Verkehrsverein Bad Aachen e.V.
Aachen tourist service
Favorite thing: Aachen lies within a moderate sea climate zone. Even in the summer months, it is a good idea to pack a jacket or sweater because temperatures could become unseasonably cool. Also, be sure to bring an umbrella because it rains a lot.
Favorite thing: I'm guessing these represent "Ladies who shop" as this statue was situated on busy shopping street of Mefferdatisstrasse ( I think). Anyway... they would certainly need their umbrellas on the day we visited!!
Favorite thing: I have no particular memory. Aachen is just a city I feel extremely cozy and comfortable in. People stop and talk to you and there are interesting historical things to see. One thing I am VERY impressed with however, is the cathedral. It is my favourite church building so far because of its non traditional almost byzantine interior. Don't miss it!
Favorite thing: Aachen is a very nice German old city. However, it would not be as nice and interesting without the wonderful VT member M-Joy and her friend that took us around this city as tour guides in the most professional way and lots of information. Thanks you very much guys :-)
There was a large crowd gathered round this statue listening to their tour guide... I missed the talk so I don't have any info about "Fat Baby with Fish". He must be historically relevant to the city of Aachen, so I shall research further!!
Ok... so now I know I shall pass this fascinating info on to you, dear reader!
The "FBWF" is situated in the Fischmarkt where for centuries fish from local rivers and ponds were sold. The statue stands opposite the Taufkapelle (Baptistry) where, up until Napoleonic times all Aachen children were baptised.
"Et Fisch -Pueddelche" is the name of this fountain designed by Lederer at the beginning of the 20th C. "Pueddelche" is a nickname for a small child in Aachen. At the time Lederer designed this fountain it would have been unthinkable for the prudish, puritanical towns people to have a statue of a naked man in their streets! So, instead, he erected a statue of a naked baby holding two fish to represent the fish market and no one was offended.
It seems that in the past this statue often disappeared and has at times even been guarded by policemen!!
Fondest memory: My fondest memory will always be the Kakao!
There are lots of statues and fountains around Aachen, some quite ancient and some more recent.
This is HI Stephanus, Koenig von Ungarn (979-1038) (by Prof. Imre Varga). Unfortunately I don't have any more info right now but I shall update this tip when I have found out a little more about him.
Favorite thing: Right in the middle of the Marktplatz you find a statue in combination with a fountain of Charles the Great (Charlemagne) who lived in Aachen in the 8th and 9th century and was the most famous emperor of this ages in Europe.
Not a fond memory but a memory nonetheless. The journey back from Aachen on the A44 was one Sabsi and I will not forget for a while....
We reluctantly left the happy VT meeting about 11.30pm to make our way back to Dusseldorf, tired by now as we had been up since early morning for the flight over. Well we'd only been on the A44for a short while when an accident happened jusrt a few cars ahead on us and that was it no movement on the road for over 3 hours. All we could see was the disco lights of the emergency services as fire engines, police and ambulances rushed past. Sabsi popped out for a few smokes and later we discovered there was petrol leaking onto the road :-SS. The traffic news said it wouldn't be cleared until about 5am so we settled down for a sleep in the car only to be rudely awakened by a tannoy saying we could turn around to the last exit. it was a strange experience motoring down the wrong way of the autobahn and it surprised me that it had taken so long before this was allowed to happen but we eventually made it back to Dusseldorf about 4.30am. Needless to say it was a late breakfast that day!
Favorite thing: The Aachen city guide told us the story behind this cute sculpture of children playing. The little girl in the middle was desperate not to play anymore so she could go to the toilet...but her playmates wouldn't let her out of the ring...and hence she ended up with wet trousers :-S
Favorite thing: some of the modern art work of Aachen is scattered around in quiet corners of the city - like this stilt sculpture. Just a few steps away from the cathedral was this quiet secluded new housing development with this sculpture in its courtyard. So explore all thiose nooks and crannies of the city - you never know what you may come across.
Favorite thing: There are many other charming fountains - like this little boy holding up the fish - each with their own story to tell. Indeed if you are interested a guide can be hired to tell you all the stories relating to these fountains and sculptures - just inquire at the tourist office for details.