I think most photographs you can find online of Saarbrucken's St. Johanner Markt are taken with a wide angled lens, because it's quite cramped, especially by German standards. Even for town's half its size it is small, and for a state capital it is positively puny. The real squares of note are in front of the castle and Ludwigskirche.
However, this is the square with all the life. The long, busy shopping street of Bahnhofstrasse feeds into St. Johanner Markt, and the square silts up with all kinds of people festooned with all kinds of consumer goods. Expect to find here all kinds of wares for people with tired, overloaded arms, like coffee, beer and waffles.
Another part of Stengel's architectural legacy to Saarbrucken is the Basilica St. Johann. Again built in the Baroque style, but not quite as striking as Ludwigskirche due to its cramped location and smaller mass. Unlike Ludwigskirche, the Basilica is, of course, Catholic, and its Baroque design is perfectly fitting.
The castle no longer exists, but you can still stand on its walls and look out over Saarbrucken for some great city views. Its church is still there, sitting faithfully at the foot of its old walls, as is the Castle Square, an enclosure of white 18th century Baroque buildings designed by the city's adopted architectural son, Friedrich Joachim Stengel.
Just a short train ride away, the UNESCO "Alte Völklinger Hütte" an iron making plant closed down in 1986 and now open for visitors. If you have any interest in old industrial sites this is for you. Enjoyed my day out here.
More on my Völklingen page.
A birthday treat for Mrs Bonio, she decided, a trip to the zoo. Luckily the weather managed to stay dry while we visited.
As ever plenty to keep us occupied, Llamas and goats Mrs B's favourites on this occaison, no penguins a minor disappointment, she soon got over it though!
This theatre hosts different plays, concerts, operas, etc. It was built around 1937, after the instructions of Paul Otto August Baumgarten. This theatre was supposedly built by the German Reich, so that the people of Saarbrücken would "choose" them, as Saarbrücken was then in between sides.
The Nauwieserviertel is a neighborhood in Saarbrücken, that you can find right behind the Johanneskirche. It has become quite a hip neighborhood in the past few years, so you'll be able to find plenty of interesting shops there, as well as nice Cafés and Restaurants/Bistros. I just love to walk around the Nauwieserviertel and look at the old buildings, discover the cutest little places, and just have a nice time! I might be biased though, this used to be my neighborhood when I was living in SB after all!
The Ludwigs church is often considered as the masterpiece of architect Stengel, as well as one of the most aesthetically perfect baroque Protestant churches in Germany. It was finished in the late 18th century, but was completely destroyed during WWII. However the church was totally restored to its former glory. The area of the Ludwigskirche (behind the church) is also a very nice place to have a nice and quiet walk, and especially to admire all the arquitecture that surrounds it!
This is the main square in Saabrücken. It's always lively (especially with nice weather!), full on nice Cafès and terraces to sit down and enjoy a cup of coffee... or a Pils! The market is also surrounded by lovely little streets that you can walk around, and of course there is plenty of shops there! The baroque fountain the in center of the market was built by arquitect Stengel in the mid 18th century. Also this is the main place for the Christmas market... and who doesn't enjoy a German Christmas market??
The Palace wall is a great place to have a lovely view from the city of Saarbrücken. It was moved back 16 meters when the "cityring" was built. The head of the "miserly baker" of St. Johann can be seen on the side of the stairs that go up to the wall. This was earlier used as a gargoyle at the old bridge.
This building dates from the mid 1700's, and was described as Saabrücken's coat of arms. The baroque dome was destroyed during WWII, and re-built in the late 40's. Nowadays the old city hall hosts the Saarbrücken Volks Hoch Schule (the school for adult education). What I love about this building? The fact that I learned German in it! My classroom was actually the one with the balcony :)!!
The existence of this Palace goes back to 999, but as you can see from the picture this building was destroyed and rebuilt over the past century. The actual Palace was last renovated in 1989. Nowadays this Palace serves as an administrative center, and it also holds different events and conferences.
The Invisible Memorial was "made" by Jochen Gerzt and some students of the Art school in Saarbrücken in 1993. They dug up the stones of the square and carved the names of Jewish cemeteries, as a way of expressing tolerance, and again racism.
In the very center of the city you will also find the City Hall, right across from the St. Johanner church. This city hall has, like the church a Neo-Gothic style, it was built in the late 19th century. I always enjoyed looking at the various statues, especially the one of St. George and the dragon. Unfortunately the meaning of why the statue is there, is not very clear... in any case it's quite nice to look at! Oh, and also you can hear the bells from the tower toll several times a day... also quite nice!
This church has a prominent placer in the Saarbrücken city center, right across the city hall, and it also should be quite easy to get there, as it has a tram stop right next to it. It has a Neo-Gothic style, and was built in the late 19th century. In al the years I lived in SB I never saw much going on in the church, which is quite a shame since it's a beautiful building!
The architect Georg J. von Hauberisser is responsible for the fantastic town halls in Munich and Wiesbaden, which you can see pictures of in my pages of them. Saarbrucken's Rathaus is not quite as magnificent, but is still one of the more striking buildings of its kind in Germany. Like the other buildings, it's built in that neo-Gothic style with a cartoon house of horror bell tower. It's easy to imagine it being encircled by bats on dark stormy nights.