"Chemnitz - City of Modernism" Top 5 Page for this destination Chemnitz by german_eagle

Chemnitz Travel Guide: 138 reviews and 628 photos

With a pop. of about 250,000 Chemnitz is the third largest city in Saxony. It is located at the foot of the Erzgebirge mountains (elevation 309 m) at the confluence of several smaller rivers, surrounded by large forests.

In 1143 a Benedictine monastery was first mentioned here, located on a hill and founded by Emperor Lothar. A merchant's settlement developed below the monastery from 1165 on. The city became one of the most important industrial centres in Germany in the 19th/early 20th century - clothing, machine manufactures etc. It even got the inofficial name of "Saxon Manchester." After WWII the city centre was left in ruins. The communists decided to rebuild the centre very modern - meaning (mostly) pre-fabricated blocks, wide streets. The result is not particularly beautiful but after 1990 a lot was done (and built) to increase the attraction of the city centre.

From 1953 until 1990 the city was named "Karl-Marx-Stadt" an idea of the communist government in Berlin. Not that Marx had ever been there or that there was any other reference to Marx - but the communists wanted this to be a city of "proletarians". Most famous relic of that era is the "Nischel" - see picture and separate tip.

While Chemnitz may never become a hot spot of internation tourism it is well worth a visit, especially if you're interested in *real* life in a German city and not just the picturesque towns that seem to be stuck in past centuries. Don't get me wrong - Chemnitz has lots of attractions, like outstanding museums, several churches worth to see, castles in the outskirts of town, and also a lively restaurant, cafe and club scene.

However, Chemnitz will be particularly rewarding for those seeking architecture of the 19th and early 20th century - residential and public buildings, but also fantastic industrial architecture.

Due to its previously mentioned location at the foot of the Erzgebirge mountains the possibilities for short excursions to the natural wonders as well as cute towns there are abundant, not to mention the parks and gardens within the city itself.

  • Intro Updated Nov 18, 2011
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Reviews (36)

Comments (8)

  • King_Golo's Profile Photo
    Nov 21, 2015 at 3:52 AM

    How is it possible that I missed your excellent Chemnitz pages? Great tips, lots of useful insider information, some extras that the average tourist doesn't see.

    • german_eagle's Profile Photo
      Nov 21, 2015 at 10:41 AM

      Christmas is always magical in the area. But I hope you'll be there some days prior to Christmas to catch the Christmas markets.

    • King_Golo's Profile Photo
      Nov 22, 2015 at 1:09 AM

      Yes, there will be - I always go there to catch at least the Chemnitz Christmas market.

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Nov 18, 2015 at 12:39 PM

    We wanted to visit this city, but ran out of time on our trips. As always, you explain and show the good sites.

  • Oleg_D.'s Profile Photo
    Jun 28, 2014 at 9:18 AM

    You put me in temptation to visit that city!

  • globetrott's Profile Photo
    Mar 2, 2012 at 5:17 PM

    An interesting page with a lot of great sights for my next time in Sachsen, thanks for sharing, Ingo !

  • bugulma's Profile Photo
    Jan 9, 2012 at 2:00 AM

    seems to be nice place. Schlosskirche is very impressive

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Dec 31, 2011 at 4:09 AM

    Ingo, fabulous updates and new tips about Chemnitz, which I still haven't visited. I only remember a 3:0 victory of Borussia Mönchengladbach against Chemnitzer FC back in May 2001 when we promoted back to the 1. Bundesliga. - Happy new year 2012.

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Dec 30, 2011 at 9:17 AM

    Happy New Year, Ingo! I enjoyed reading your Chemnitz tips/reviews. I have still never been to Chemnitz, but it?s on my list. I?m surprised they have a restaurant called Don, but of course I?ll have to go there sometime.

  • Kathrin_E's Profile Photo
    Nov 7, 2011 at 10:49 AM

    Can't wait...

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