"No effort to like Erfurt" Top 5 Page for this destination Erfurt by iandsmith

Erfurt Travel Guide: 298 reviews and 912 photos

Expectations

To be honest, I was looking for a place to stop between Gorlitz and Brugge that had a rail connection.
Erfurt was that place. I had no idea really what to expect as I had concentrated on the other places I was going to visit but, I always have a rule that you must stay at least two nights in a place.
I knew there was a castle somewhere nearby but held little expectation for the town itself.
The train approached and I was even less enthused. Erfurt plainly was going to have little to offer.
I alighted and walked to the tram stop following the instructions to my accommodation. I boarded the indicated tram.
The next 3 km blew me away. Had I been misplaced and delivered into Disneyland's History World?
Here a mediaeval building, there a Normandy (Tudor) style, around the corner a wonderful baroque.
I figured this was going to be a thoroughly enjoyable two days. This time I was right.

Quick overview

This is a city of over 210,000 people with a history as colourful as you could hope for and is the capital of Thuringia, a centrally located state of Germany.
It's history very much parallels Gorlitz', the city I had just left to come here. Both were built on the woad trade and the fact that the road between Paris and Novgorod ran straight through the towns.
Tragically, even as recently as 2002, Erfurt was on the world stage though in general I found the place unthreatening, the people welcoming and tourism, though going well, undervalued by other western countries which makes it great if you seek some authenticity.

Some things are better left unseen

Since I first came here, one thing has become abundant. Unfortunately, that one thing is graffiti. It has reached plague proportions in the city and really puts a dampener on many of the areas.
Though it's noteable in the old city where tourists go it is absolutely appalling the amount of it out in the suburbs. Hopefully the good burghers of Erfurt will read this and start doing something about it.
I won't gratify the exponents by giving them even greater exposure here, which is why there is no picture.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Easy to get around, heaps to see, lack of foreign tourists
  • Cons:Graffiti
  • In a nutshell:An undersold delight
  • Last visit to Erfurt: Mar 2008
  • Intro Updated Mar 11, 2008
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Reviews (58)

Comments (8)

  • wabIV's Profile Photo
    Jun 30, 2010 at 3:07 PM

    Hello Ian, Wow, great tips and photos of Erfurt. Erfurt sounds like a town not to be missed. I'm looking forward to my visit to this beautiful part of the country. All the best.

  • Maryimelda's Profile Photo
    Jun 8, 2010 at 9:53 PM

    This is a fabulous page Ian. Erfurt is on my wish list for 2011. I will now try some more of your pages to see what other places you can tempt me with. Thank you.

  • christine.j's Profile Photo
    Apr 13, 2008 at 8:19 AM

    I'll back in Erfurt in a few weeks! Did you find out anything about the shoe with the arrow?

  • Cristian_Uluru's Profile Photo
    Mar 7, 2008 at 11:05 AM

    Fantastic page!! I hope to see it soon!

  • alancollins's Profile Photo
    Nov 19, 2007 at 1:30 AM

    Unfortunately I only had a few hours to kill in this delightful city, whilst waiting to meet another VTer for lunch.

  • Sjalen's Profile Photo
    Oct 8, 2007 at 6:30 AM

    Me again - I'm stuck on this corner of Europe now :)))

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Jun 20, 2007 at 12:53 AM

    Me again, coming back to see the rest of your tips and photos. I was near Erfurt (in Nordhausen, just up the road) on the day of that massacre, and the next morning we started my teachers' workshop with a minute of silence for the victims.

  • RhineRoll's Profile Photo
    May 30, 2007 at 12:29 AM

    your pages give excellent testimony that it repays to get off the beaten tourist track in Germany!!!

iandsmith

“The shortest distance between two people is laughter (note sign in picture)”

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