It has been painstakingly renovated and is now a perfect example of 18th-century Baroque beauty. The pope even granted the church the title “Basilica Minor”. Not to be missed are the bronze portal and the entrance area, which were designed by the Saarbrücken artist Ernst Alt.
The church organ is particularly striking. It consists of three individual parts, the main organ and the two choir organs. They can be played individually or together. The St. Johann Basilica organ is hence composed of 60 sounding stops and a total of 4,312 pipes. This remarkable and multifaceted instrument is exceptional in both its construction and its tone spectrum and is renowned far beyond Saarbrücken and the Saarland.
In the 17th century the castle was rebuilt in the style of the Renaissance, but later destroyed and now only the cellars of this construction remain. In the 18th century Prince Wilhelm Heinrich had his architect Stengel build a new Baroque residence on the same site. Since then the castle has suffered various bouts of destruction and was partially burnt down and reconstructed before being thoroughly and magnificently renovated in 1989.
The first decentralized satellite of a French museum, the Centre Pompidou-Metz is a masterpiece of contemporary architecture. Conceptualized by the architects Shigeru Ban and Jean de Gastines, with Philip Gumuchdjian, who also designed the prizewinning project, there are three exhibition spaces covered by an audacious roof inspired by a Chinese hat.
Built between 1220 and 1552, it is the product of the unification of two distinct churches. With its 42 metre high vaults, it is one of the highest Gothic edifices in Europe. With its 6,500 m² of stained glass windows, the nickname “God’s lantern” is well merited.
Construction of the theatre began in 1738 but work was delayed by a number of problems (war, embezzlement etc.). The first theatrical performance only took place 14 years later. However, it is the oldest theatre still in use in France today.
Going back into the early Middle Ages, a wall defined an area surrounding the Cathedral, the close, whose center today comprises, along with the Cathedral, the recently redesigned Cathedral Square with the grandiose view onto the Romanesque west façade of the Cathedral and the Early Gothic Church of Our Lady.
For the newly arrived guest, the Porta Nigra is the best place to begin a tour of Trier. The gate dates back to a time (about A.D. 180) when the Romans often erected public buildings of huge stone blocks (here, the biggest weigh up to six metric tons).
The Vauban Circular Walk, named after the French fortress builder Sébastien le Prestre de Vauban (1633-1707), leads the visitor through one part of the fortifications of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Guided visits for groups up to 25 people on request. Circular walk also accessible without guide.
The new building of the National Museum of Natural History opened its doors to the public in December 1996. In this modern museum are presented in ten exhibition rooms the people, the regions and landscapes of Luxembourg and the development of life on earth as well as the origin of the universe.
In 963, Count Siegfried built a fortified castle on the Bock promontory, which was soon to become the cradle of the city. In the course of the centuries, on the western side, mighty ring walls were added, which, however, did not foil the Burgundians in their attempt to conquer the city in 1443. The best builder-engineers of the new masters (the Burgundians, the Spaniards, the French, the Austrians and the German Confederation) eventually turned the city into one of the most powerful emplacements in the world, the "Gibraltar of the North". Its defences were bolstered by three fortified rings with 24 forts, 16 other strong defensive works and a unique 23 km long network of casemates: these could not only shelter thousands of soldiers and their horses, but also housed workshops, kitchens, bakeries, slaughter-houses etc.
The name Luxembourg was first mentioned in 963 when count Siegfried exchanged lands for a small fortified castle by the name of Lucilinburhuc. Throughout the Middle Ages, the House of Luxembourg considerably extended its territory and power. Between 963 and 1443 Luxembourg was independent, at first as a County, then since 1354 as a Duchy. In the 14th Century and the first half of the 15th Century, four Holy Roman Emperors and four Kings of Bohemia came out of the House of Luxembourg.
Thanks to its strategic position in Europe and its formidable fortress - referred to as “Gibraltar of the North” - Luxembourg was much coveted. Thus -between 1443 and 1815- the castle of Siegfried had to endure a succession of Burgundian, Spanish, French and Austrian rulers who each shaped the fortress and the surrounding countryside.
After the defeat of Napoleon, the Powers of the time gathered at the Congress of Vienna in 1815 to reorganise Europe. Due to the importance of the fortress they decided to create a new country around the fortified castle on the Bock: the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
National Museum of History and Art, archeological section. The museum has a large archaeological collection, particularly of objects discovered during the various excavations: sarcophaguses, tools, coins, jewels, grave markers, etc. the most outstanding objects being found in the excavations at Dalheim (Ricciacus) and Titelberg. The visual arts section of this museum in the capital offers the possibility of admiring a wide range of Luxembourgish painting from the 18th to the 20th century, including the post-impressionist watercolours of Sosthène Weis, paintings by Joseph Kutter, Dominique Lang, Eugène Mousset, Jean-Pierre Beckius, Nico Klopp and Auguste Trémont as well as sculptures by Auguste Trémont and Lucien Wercollier. While the museum also houses ancient sculptures and paintings (including a Charity attributed to Cranach), it also has a collection of contemporary art of undeniable originality.
The cathedral "Notre-Dame" of Luxembourg was built between 1613 and 1621 by the Jesuits to serve as a church to their college (now the National Library). The north gate is characteristic of the semi-Renaissance, semi-Baroque style of the period. Since 1794, it has housed the statue of the Consoler of the Afflicted. A cathedral church in 1870, it was enlarged from 1935 to 1938. The choir screen in richly sculpted alabaster, columns decorated with arabesques, stained glass from the 19th and 20th centuries, neo-Gothic confessionals, modern sculptures in bas relief, bronze gates by Auguste Trémont, are all worthy of this splendid sanctuary. The crypt is the resting place of John the Blind, King of Bohemia and Count of Luxembourg, as well as deceased members of the Grand Ducal family; the two lions flanking the entrance are also the work of Auguste Trémont.
As the town residence of the Grand Duke, the grand-ducal palace has unquestionably one of the most beautiful façades in the city (Flemish Renaissance, 16th century). Majestical interior and splendid above stairs (with light design by Ingo Maurer) can be visited exclusively during summer.
Their origin goes back to 1644, when the Spaniards reinforced the medieval fortifications. Under the supervision of the Swiss fortress builder Isaac von Treybach, they built - among other defence works-the powerful Beck Bastion, named after Governor Baron Johann von Beck, a native of the city who had played a key role in the Wallenstein affair on the side of the Emperor. Initially this bastion was as high as the adjacent terraces on the right; it was raised to the present level of Constitution Square (the wall is 27 meters high) by Vauban in 1685. In 1673 the Spaniards erected the so-called "Ravelin du Pate" to strengthen the defence of the Beck Bastion; this triangular construction is one of the few well-kept fortifications. Marshall de Vauban conferred the present shape to all the Petrusse fortifications and built the "Small Staircase". From 1728-29 the Austrians added the "Bourbon Lock" and the "Large Staircase" and in 1746 the casemates of the "Petrusse Battery" (54 gun emplacements). One century passed and the fortress was enlarged and reinforced: the second ring was extended and the third started, so that Luxembourg became the "Gibraltar of the North". By and by, the Petrusse fortifications fell into oblivion and neglect, as their strategic momentum limited itself to the valley. After the dismantling, stipulated by the 1867 London Treaty, they confined themselves to walling up the loopholes and most entrances. Only in 1933 were the Petrusse casemates valorized again: on 26th July, the first visitors were able to visit them.
The Municipal Park, an English park laid out by landscape engineer Edouard André on the old fortified grounds at the front of the plain, is a real island of green in the heart of the city. Green spaces such as the Kinnékswiss in the city centre are the ideal place to recharge your batteries.
The old castle, protected by a moat, was built in four periods. The oldest part of the castle dates from the early 11th century. It was a small square-shaped fortress on a massive rock, surrounded by a wide ditch and a second wall facing the valley. Around the first half of the 12th century, a flanking tower was added and the access gate was moved and enlarged.
Founded in 1979, the European Parliament has been home to 785 Euro MPs representing the 27 countries of the European Union since 1 January 2008. Here, they vote on legislation concerning the environment, labour, equality etc. The sittings are held 4 days a month in Strasbourg. The building of the European Parliament called "Louise-Weiss" after the oldest member who gave the opening speech at the 1st session of the Parliament.
Designed in 1998, the Strasbourg Modern and Contemporary Art Museum is an immense glass building built on the banks of the River Ill. It houses collections of paintings, sculptures, decorative artefacts and stained-glass windows dating from impressionism to modern times.
A prodigy of the gigantesque and the delicate," as Victor Hugo claimed. Strasbourg Cathedral (1015-1439) is an absolute masterpiece of Gothic art. The 142 m high spire looks incredibly lightweight and made the Cathedral the highest edifice in all Christianity until the 19th century.
Vianden Castle was built between the 11th and 14th Century on the foundations of a Roman castle and a Carolingian refuge. This Castle-Palace bears the Hohenstaufen characteristics and is one of the largest and finest feudal residences of the Roman and Gothic eras in Europe.
Until the early 15th Century it was home to the powerful Counts of Vianden who could boast of their close connections to the German Imperial Court. The greatest of them, Count Henry I (1220 -1250) was even married to a member of the Capetian family, which ruled France at the time. In 1417, the castle and its lands were inherited by the younger line of the German House of Nassau, which -in 1530- also acquired the French principality of Orange. The castle's most remarkable rooms; the chapel as well as the small and the grand palaces were built in the late 12th and the first half of the 13th Century.
In 1890 the castle became the property of Grand Duke Adolphe of the elder line of Nassau and remained in the hands of the Grand Ducal family until 1977 when it was transferred into state ownership. It has been painstakingly restored to its former glory and today ranks among the most significant historical monuments of Europe.
Step into Baden-Baden’s Kurhaus and marvel at its unique Belle Epoch styled elegance. Whether it’s a concert, a casino visit, a midnight dinner or a star-studded ball, the Kurhaus represents Baden-Baden’s glittering center stage.
Find out about Baden-Baden under the Romans, its history as a spa town and health resort, the heady days of the nineteenth century when the town soared to being a world renowned spa, and many other fascinating facts and features, right up to the present day.
The market square (Marktplatz) is in all probability the best-known square in Karlsruhe. Situated on it is the city's hallmark, the pyramid, built in 1823 as well as the municipal protestant church, the town hall, and the market fountain.
A glistening golden dome is the hallmark of this Byzantine-styled church, which should definitely be included on your tour of the town. Vladimir Potemkin and Bernhard Belzer built this spectacular structure between 1880 – 1882.
Romanesque pillar basilica with a double choir and a transept, built 1125/1130 – 1181 on the foundations of a structure erected by Bishop Burchard (1000 – 1025). Elaborate decorations in the east and west choirs.
There was a Jewish Community in Worms for an uninterrupted period lasting more than 900 years. Many architectural reminders have survived and bear witness today to the former importance of Jewish Worms.
The Rhine Promenade is a historic park from the 1920s. Because of its attractive location and its clear, classical design, it is regarded as one of the most important representative green spaces in the city of Worms.
The imposing baroque palace with its impressive size is not without reason the largest Baroque palace in Germany. Stroll across the wide Ehrenhof, be impressed in the former State Rooms and the Castle Church or enjoy the student bustle of the University of Mannheim, which is located in the castle.
Mannheim's lively Jungbusch district brings a real Berlin vibe to the city. Between its industrial romanticism and harbour scenery beats the creative heart of the city. With facilities like the Popakademie Baden-Wurttemberg, the Musikpark Mannheim or the creative business incubator C-HUB, it is a focal point for the city's many creative people. Jungbusch has evolved from its former life as a harbour to become a trendy district without losing its special charm. If you want to get to know the real Mannheim nightlife, head to Jungbusch. The cultural festival "Nachtwandel im Jungbusch" attracts visitors from right across the region.
The baroque backdrop for the market held here three times a week is formed by the ensemble of the old town hall and the parish church of St. Sebastian - which is incidentally Mannheim's oldest building. If you happen to lose track of time in the hustle and bustle of the market, two clocks and a bell tower are on hand to bring you back to the here and now. What's more, a glockenspiel sounds from the tower three times a day, charming more people than merely the wedding couple exchanging vows inside the walls.
You can immerse yourself in Mannheim's internationality directly behind the marketplace. The predominantly Turkish-influenced district with its small shops and delicacies like baklava and pide can easily turn your thoughts to your next holiday. The huge selection of bridal and evening wear on offer here draws customers from over 150 kilometers away.