Aachen Travel Guide

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    by Pedralho
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    by beetlebummer
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Aachen Highlights

  • Pro
    BillNJ profile photo

    BillNJ says…

     Compact City Center; Magnificent Cathedral; Carolus Thermen Bad Aachen 

  • Con
    m-joy profile photo

    m-joy says…

     No river, bad weather! 

  • In a nutshell
    TinyTuck profile photo

    TinyTuck says…

     Nice little historical students' city in the heart of Europe! 

Aachen Things to Do

  • Visit The Christmas Market

    Although Aachen's Christmas Market is a relatively recent affair - until the 1970's it was a small Printen market - it has developed into quite a lavish event occupying the whole area between the Town Hall and the Münsterplatz in front of the Cathedral.The colourfully decorated stalls offer a wide selection of craft goods, mostly hand-made and of...

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  • Aachener Dom

    The Dom is Aachen's Roman Catholic Cathedral, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, and was constructed during the reign of Charlemagne in the 8th century. This is Northern Europe's oldest cathedral and is considered to be one of the finest.As you enter there's a brass sculpture of a wolf with a shiny paw. Legend has it that funds were scant during the...

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  • Suermondt-Ludwig Museum

    This is Aachen's major art museum, with a wide range of displays including paintings and sculpture from as far back as the 12th century, but up to and including the 20th.While I was there they also had an impressive exhibition of paintings by the virtuoso Dutch artist Jacob Backer (1608/09-1651), a contemporary of Rembrandt and one of the most...

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Aachen Hotels

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Aachen Restaurants

  • Taste of Italy.....

    This little cafe/bistro is situated in Burtschide neighbourhood of Aachen. In the past (150yrs ago) this was small spa village just outside of the city walls, now as the city expand is part of it, but still retain the feel of village with high street , where this little cafe is situated. As a traveller you have to look for it, as is far out of the...

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  • Best Icecream in Town!!!!!

    The owners of Eis Caffee Tasin are fullbloded Italians and the Ice cream they serve is the real thing!! Proper,melt in your mouth ambrosia... I love the fact that they have over 30 different flavours of icecream, and also have Ice cream for diabetics and a big choice of sorbets and frozen yougurts.I was proprerly impresed with the sorbets, as is...

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  • A Perfect Agreement!!

    Having found the atmospheric and friendly Cafe Egmont for a few beers after our arduous afternoon of culture, history and Christmas Market shopping we reckoned a serious nibble was in order - something a bit more substantial than the freebie nuts that came with the beers. There were menus on the tables from the Lebanese restaurant AKL and upon...

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Aachen Nightlife

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  • Good Company, Good Atmosphere and...

    Having done our culture, history and ultimately Christmas Market stuff it was definitely beer time. Simon suggested we head towards the student quarter as the bars would be cheaper, and hopefully less crowded, than those around the market and so off we headed.It wasn't actually that far, a hundred or so metres, and we were looking for this specific...

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  • Muckefuck!?!?!?

    During one of our strolls arounf Aachen, we found this place and looked like the ideal spot to sit down and enjoy a drink. No, it was not because of the name - I have no idea what it means.It is decorated in a very unusual way (see pictures - 5), with a lot of mirrors, painting and sculptures. Service was efficient and friendly and the athmosphere...

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  • Local Disco

    I had so much fun at B-9. It is a standard disco with two bars and a huge dance floor. When I was a student, we went there a lot. I guess that makes it a student place. They play fun music (top of the charts.) Be careful about loosing your ticket for coat check. I lost mine and they wouldn't give it back to me!All in all, it's a fun place with a...

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Aachen Transportation

  • A Day Trip To or From Maastricht

    Worth doing if you are staying a few days in Maastricht is to have a day out to the former capital city of the Holy Roman Empire, Aachen, where Charlemagne reigned and for 500 years the German Kings were crowned.The #50 bus runs between the two cities every 15 minutes during the day and half-hourly in the evening with the journey taking about an...

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  • Cycling in Aachen

    Although Aachen is not one of Germany's outstanding bicycle cities, they do have 290 kilometers of signposted bicycle routes, and the city has started various projects to encourage people to cycle to work, school or university.Aachen also has an active chapter of the General German Bicycle Club (ADFC) which lobbies for a better cycling...

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  • Bicycle parking

    Here's an example of how the City of Aachen has made a tenfold improvement in the use of public space at very little cost.They have taken what used to be a parking space for one car and made it into a parking facility for ten bicycles, by installing five frames that bikes can be locked to.

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Aachen Shopping

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  • Where To Get Your Printen

    Aachener Printen is a local baked speciality: a sortof cross between gingerbread and a biscuit. This had its origins in the feast-day breads introduced by the Belgians in the 17th century but following Napoleon's embargo of imported honey the Aachen bakers developed their own recipe and technique using sugar from beets.This resulted in a coarser...

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  • Ladies, you MUST try the bubble bars!

    All sorts of bath products, such as bubble bars, bath bombs, soap, lotions, lip balm, body scrubs, etc. These products make wonderful gifts! If you buy nothing else, buy a bubble bar! They are pricey, but break them in half, they are still fabulous! These are the most wonderful things I have ever used in my bathtub. They smell nice and leave my...

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  • Great City Center Pedestrian Zone

    Like many German cities, Aachen has a great city center pedestrian zone. This area has numerous stores and shops. Here, people can shop and browse without having to worry about automobile traffic.

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Aachen Local Customs

  • Toy's fountain

    Toys for children on the street! It's possible to move the toys and children obviously enjoy. We stuck there for a while too :)

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  • Student Recreation

    I saw people smoking marijuana around Aachen. Perhaps part of the reason being the location to the Netherlands and also people don't make a big deal out of small things. I remember growing up in the US, of course everyone trys or sees others trying marijuana. In general, the memories i have of my teenage and early 20's people smoked looking for the...

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  • May Day

    MayDay or Labor Day. In Rhineland, May 1 is also celebrated by the delivery of a tree covered in streamers to the house of a girl the night before. The tree is typically from a love interest, though a tree wrapped only in white streamers is a sign of dislike. On leap years, it is the responsibility of the females to place the maypole, though the...

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Aachen Warnings and Dangers

  • How to behave to give tourists a bad...

    Our tour guide at the Aachen Dom told a shocking tale about how the actions of irresponsible tourists give their fellow travellers a bad name, which I think is worth sharing, as it highlights how insensitive some tourists can be, and how the perpetrators are not always young people.A couple of years ago, he took a tour with a fairly elderly group,...

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  • Guidance on photography in churches:...

    Visiting churches is one of the absolute highlights of a trip to Europe, and provides a fascinating insight into the most powerful influencethat has shaped European cultures of the past couple of millenia.Unlike some other religions - where access to places of worship may be restricted to members of that religious group or a specific gender - the...

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  • Disappointingly ineffectual Tourist...

    Aachen's tourist office is beautifully appointed in a lovely classically inspired building right next to the Elisenbrunnen. The staff members are pleasant, but really need to go up a gear in their dealings with the public if they are to deliver a quality of service befitting this splendid city and worthy of their major investment in establishing...

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Aachen Tourist Traps

  • Beware of Cathedral's reconstructions...

    That trip to Aachen was one of the most unsuccessful our trips in Germany since 1999… We started at 9.00 from Wuppertal where we stayed for a night and planned to have two excursions that day: in Cologne and Aachen. But we had to come to the stadium in Dusseldorf not later than 16.30 to make Asslan’s registration on SV BSZS.The distance – 230km, I...

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  • Frankenburg Castle - Not Worth a Visit

    I visited Aachen several times before I was even aware of Frankenburg Castle. I was not impressed. The inside is basically stripped bare, and some archeological things are on display. There is also a stage...one of the local theatre companies obviously gives performances here. But unless you are going to one of those performances, there is really...

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  • Christmas Market

    Christmas market ('Weihnachtsmarkt') - It´s kind of a tourist trap. Buses of tourists from all over Germany and surrounding countries come to Aachen for it´s beautiful Christmas market. It sure IS very nice, but I have to admit that it´s not much better than other German Christmas markets I´ve seen...It´s usually from November 22nd till December...

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Aachen What to Pack

  • Layers are your best bet

    The weather is so random in Aachen. One day it is nice sunny and warm, the next maybe be cold and rainy. Some days you'll experience that all in the same day. I dressed in layers and found it was the easiest.

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  • for the shower and the showers

    Bring an umbrella. It rains a lot here, but we lucked out and had a sunny week. One clerk said it was "Aachen's best weather in two years." Also, pack washcloths! Our hotel didn't have any, and the staff didn't understand what we wanted.

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  • Climate in Aachen

    Rainy season: There is no special rainy seasonAvg. Temp. in Spring: max.: 11 – 20°C ( 51 - 68°F ); min: 4 - 10°C ( 39 - 50°F )Avg. Temp. in Summer: max.: 21 – 24°C ( 70 - 75°F ); min: 12 - 14°C ( 52 - 57°F )Avg. Temp. in Autumn: max.: 8 – 20°C ( 47 - 68°F); min: 4 - 12°C ( 39 – 52°F )Avg. Temp. in Winter: max.: 6 – 9°C ( 43 - 49°F); min: 3 - 4°C...

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Aachen Off The Beaten Path

  • Bicycle route to Three Countries Corner

    All over Aachen there are bicycle route signs pointing to Dreiländereck, meaning Three Countries Corner, where the borders of Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands all come together.The distances are of course in kilometers, so on this first sign it's only 5.2 kilometers away (just over three miles). The same sign points to the town of Vaals, in the...

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  • Cyclists at Three Countries Corner

    I had no idea what to expect up there, and I thought I might be the only person or at least the only cyclist up at Three Countries Corner, but in fact there were thousands of people on bicycles, all wearing lycra, because it happened to be the day of the Tour Version of the Amstel Gold Race, a huge Dutch bicycle event in which about twelve thousand...

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  • Tower at Three Countries Corner

    At the Three Countries Corner there is a tower which you can climb for a small fee (or take the elevator, which is what I did), to have a look out over the three countries.There are also two or three restaurants on the site, as well as snack bars and a labyrinth made of hedges. All these facilities are on the Netherlands side, but the people who...

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Aachen Sports & Outdoors

  • Grosse Preis von Aachen

    Half a week of horsey activities with the Grosse Preis being the main showjumping event. Apart from that there is a "Nations cup" jumping as well as carriage driving and dressage. These very famous competitions in the equestrian calendar take place every June and you can get exact dates for the relevant year and booking information from the tourist...

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  • Annual Equestrian Competitions and More...

    Unless you are a pro, this is a spectator activity, and the admission fee for watching is quite steep, depending on where you sit and how long you go to the meet. We were in Aachen at the time of the CHIO. (I still do not know what the letters stand for. If you know please tell me and I will change this). This is a picture of a horse plastic(?)...

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  • Heya, heya, Alemannia!!

    TivoliThe famous Tivoli – that’s where Alemannia Aachen plays football in the second league.The fans in Aachen are unique as there’s always a great atmosphere as more than 15,000 people usually support Alemannia by singing and clapping their hands.Tickets cost up from 8 Euro (open air) and are available in town at several ticket offices, for...

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Aachen Favorites

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  • USEFUL LINKS

    Aachen websiteMultiple linksAachen local blogInfo on Aachen shopsAachen City Hall webcam

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  • Aachen Fountains

    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...

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  • Touring The City For The Footweary

    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...

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Explore Deeper into Aachen
If You're At The Christmas Market...
Restaurants
Hoogste Punt van Nederland
Off The Beaten Path
Signs for pedestrians
Transportation
Aachen Main Station (Hauptbahnhof)
Transportation
DB Call-a-Bike in Aachen
Transportation
Buses
Transportation
Bus 50 from Maastricht
Transportation
The stark simplicity of Charlemagne's throne
Things to Do
Marvel at the spellbinding Dom
Things to Do
The stern beauty of St Adalbert's Church
Things to Do
The gilded magnificence of Charlemagne's shrine
Things to Do
Take a steep stroll up to the Salvatorkirche
Things to Do
Printen: Öcher variation on a gingerbread theme!
Restaurants
Go grazing at the market in the main square
Things to Do
How to recognise your fellow Öchers!
Things to Do
Let sleeping lions lie!
Things to Do
From and to Aachen/Maastricht airport
Transportation
In the shadow of the great man himself
Things to Do
Have a therapeutic wallow in the Carolus Therme!
Things to Do
Ice cold kolsch - what more could you want?
Restaurants
Statue of St Stephen outside the Dom
Things to Do
The beautiful entrance to the Dom
Things to Do
The beautifully preserved city gate
Things to Do
The whimsical Circle of Money fountain
Things to Do
The Eurogress conference centre
Things to Do
Have a flutter in the casino
Things to Do
Catch your breath in the Salvatorburg woods
Things to Do
A rather more disturbing horse sculpture ...
Things to Do
Admire Aachen's marauding herd of horses
Things to Do
The lovely Route Charlemagne office
Things to Do
Aachen Dom's stunning treasury
Things to Do
Bicycle Station
Transportation
German Tapas
Restaurants
Café/bakery chain
Restaurants
My first real German meal
Restaurants
Good German Fare
Restaurants
Das Cafè im Haus zum Mohren
Restaurants
Favorite bar in Aachen
Nightlife
Rien ne va plus
Nightlife
Get to the altstadt
Things to Do
Map of Aachen

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