Nuremberg Card-Is it worth it?
Nuremberg is a beautiful city found in Bavaria in southern Germany. Unfortunately most people associate Nuremberg with the trials that were held here in between 1945-1946 against many WWII leaders. The city has many great sites and attractions to visit and the most cost effective way is with a Nuremberg Card.
What is the Nuremberg Card?
The Nuremberg Card is a 2 day card that gives you free admission to over 40 museums and attractions. Many of the paid attractions that visitors come to see are included on the card. For a complete list of included attractions check out this flyer.
Nuremberg Card also gives you unlimited travel on public transport for 2 days. It is valid within Zone A which covers Nuremberg, Furth and Stein. This is handy pto have when visiting attractions that are a little further out of the city like the Nazi Party Rally Grounds.
How much is the Nuremberg Card?
Nuremberg Card has three different cards available for adults, children 6-11 and children 5 and under. The adult card is 28 euros which is very affordable compared with other city cards in Florence and Paris. For a child 6-11 the pass is only 6 euros and for 5 and under it is free. The passes for children can only be purchased when you buy at least 1 adult pass.
Where can I purchase the Nuremberg Card?
You can purchase the Nuremberg Card at a range of different places in Nuremberg. The easiest place to purchase it is at your hotel or accommodation. If they don’t sell it then you can purchase it at one of the Tourism Information Centers located near the railway station or Main Market Square. If you are staying in Furth you can also purchase it at the Tourist Information Center opposite the station there.
You can also purchase the Nuremberg Card online before you travel through Get Your Guide*.
Our 2 Day Itinerary
The Nuremberg Card is valid over 2 consecutive days so we made sure to start as early as we could on Day 1.
Nuremberg once held the Nuremberg trials in courtroom 600 of the Nuremberg Palace of Justice back in 1945-46. This was to bring charges against many different leaders and influential people during WWII. The courtroom is still used today but if you’re lucky when you visit the museum you might also get to sit in the courtroom where justice was served. You tour this museum with an audio guide which has an overwhelming amount of information with not much visual content. We spent over 2 hrs here and could have spent longer listening to information we’d missed. I would recommend alloting enough time here to do it justice. I’d also plan to arrive earlier in the day before doing too many other sights so you can take in the information properly.
Admission-€6 (included in €9 municipal museum day ticket)
Nuremberg’s Castle is the most important monument in the city and has existed in one form or another for over 1000 years. The Imperial Castle has a few different areas to explore and you can walk through the courtyard. You can also get a good vantage point over the city without purchasing an admission ticket. The main palace has a permanent exhibition on the history of the Imperial Palace particularly during the Holy Roman Empire. You also get to see some of the restored rooms and chapel as well as the Imperial Castle Museum.
To get a great view over Nuremberg you can climb up to the top of Sinwell Tower which is included with the Nuremberg Card. It is a great chance to compare the view with photos of the destruction the city suffered during WWII. The Deep Well is also open at different times. You need to have a guide to see the well which was an important source of water back in the day. The whole castle shouldn’t take you more than around 1 and 1/2 hrs to explore at a relaxed pace.
Albrecht Dürer Haus was once the home of the Nuremberg’s most famous resident. He is a very famous painter and he is probably most well known for his self portrait that is on show in Munich. Unfortunately this museum does not have any of his originals but it does have some convincing copies so you can get an idea of his style of work. It’s also a nice historic house to wander around as it’s one of the few remaining burgher houses from Nuremburgs golden age. To be honest I didn’t even know this artist existed until I saw his self portrait in Munich but his work is very good. You could easily walk through the house in around 15 minutes so it’s worth a quick stop when you’re up near the castle.
Admission-€6 (included in €9 municipal museum day ticket)
The Germanisches National Museum was our last stop on day 1 as it was a Wednesday so they are open until 9pm. It also has free admission from 6-9pm on Wednesday so we didn’t need our Nuremberg Card either. This is a museum that is well worth visiting but it’s large size does mean that it can be a little overwhelming. Some galleries would also have lots of visitors and other sections look like they see only a few visitors a day. If you are short for time I recommend picking up a guide from the information desk that gives you the highlights to see. Some of my favorite objects are the Albrecht Dürer paintings and the Behaim Globe. I would recommend allowing around 2 hours here to fully appreciate the indepth collection that varies widely from musical instruments to religious relics.
Admission-€8 (free on Wednesdays 6-9pm)
On day 2 I decided to get up and start exploring as early as I could but my partner decided to save his energy and met me half way through.
The DB Museum is the world’s oldest railway museum and is a train lovers paradise. The museum covers a few different buildings and levels with a large outdoor section. There is also a good exhibition on the history of the railroad in Germany. Make sure you find the model train exhibiton where you can see scale models of all kinds of trains. Unfortunately if you don’t speak German this museum doesn’t have any information in English so although it is very well exhibited you can’t find out any information. Apparently their is a English audioguide but I wasn’t offered it and I didn’t see anyone with one.
The City Museum at Fembo House is a great if you have an interest in learning the full history of Nuremberg. The museum is currently split up into two different parts-Fembo House and A Crown-Power-History exhibition. If you want a quick but interesting look at Nuremberg’s history then you can visit this exhibition that uses an audio guide and ipad to give you the city’s history in just 30 minutes. You also have the option of choosing extra audio snippets to find out more.
Then you can head into Fembo House with a different audio guide to see a different side of Nuremberg’s history. On the top floor you start with a full model of the city and you learn about all the important buildings. You can then explore different rooms and exhibitions explaining the history of the house and city. This museum was really good and if you like looking at historic houses this a good place to visit just for that. I would allow at least 1 to 1 1/2 hours here but you could take much longer if you have a real interest in finding out more.
Admission-€6 (included in €9 municipal museum day ticket), €2.50 for A Crown-Power-History Exhibition only
The Documentation Center at the Nazi Party Rally Grounds is a must visit for anyone visiting Nuremberg. Nuremberg was an important city for the Nazi Party before and during WWII. They decided it would be a great place to build the Nazi Party Rally Grounds to stage important events to rally the public behind them. Unfortunately for them their mega plans for this area were never fully realised but many of the structures still remain as a reminder of this terrible time.
Inside a wing of the unfinished Congress Hall you have a must see exhibition-Fascination and Terror which covers the history of the National Socialist regime. You are provided with an audio guide that gives indepth information on the whole history of the Nazi Party and how they gained support. You see the propaganda they used and what the plans were for the Nazi Party Rally Grounds. Like the Memorium Nuremburg Trials, this museum has a lot of overwhelming information so I would allow at least 2 hrs just for the museum.
Admission-€6 (included in €9 municipal museum day ticket)
Once you have finished visiting the museum it is important to visit the grounds for yourself. The museum is found within a wing of the unfinshed Congress Hall but you can walk right into the centre of this unfinished colusseum like structure that is only half the size it was meant to be. I would recommend continuing on the recommended route to see the 2km Great Road which was built to be a parade road. If you continue around the lake you will reach the Zeppelin Field which is a grandstand that famously had the swastika blasted off it after the war. It is now being used as part of a motor race track. Entrance to the Nazi Party Rally Grounds is free and to do the quick walk around you need to allow at least 60 to 90 minutes to get around.
The Nuremberg Zoo was a great way for us to round off a couple of days in Nuremberg and the great thing is during warmer months the zoo is open until 7.30pm. I think the best time to visit zoos is usally in the late afternoon as the animals tend to be more active and we saw some funny behavior from a lot of animals during our visit. The funniest encounter though was with some alpine marmots that decided they would rather live outside of their enclosure. I would recommend allowing at least 2-3 hrs for a quick visit to the zoo but you could definitely spend longer as they usually have shows at the Dolphin Lagoon around 4 times per day.
How much money did we save with the Nuremburg Card?
- Memorium Nuremburg Trials-€6
- Imperial Castle-€7
- Albrecht Dürer Haus-€6
- Germanisches National Museum-€8
- DB Museum-€6
- City Museum at Fembo House-€6
- Documentation Center Nazi Party Rally Grounds-€6
- Nuremberg Zoo-€16
Total approximate cost of admission-€55
Total approximate cost of public transport-€12.30 (If we didn’t have the pass we would’ve used the TagesTicket Plus which is valid for 1 day and costs €12.30 for two adults and up to four children up to 17 years old)
Savings with Adult Nuremberg Card-€39.30
Is it worth it?
You can easily get value out of this card provided you visit a few museums in one day. If you visit the Nuremberg Zoo which costs €16 then it is easy to get your moneys worth. If you had just one day in Nuremberg I would recommend buying the day pass for the municipal museums and it only costs €9. I would prioritise the Memorium Nuremberg Trials, City Museum at Fembo House and then finish the day off at the Documentation Center at the Nazi Party Rally Grounds. It is also worth allowing time to explore the other sights of the city which we easily had time for whilst also seeing the sights with the Nuremberg Card.
The Nuremberg Card also allows admittance to a lot of other tours and museums that we didn’t have time. The Toy Museum or a tour of the historic Rock Cut Cellars seem like interesting options. I think Nuremberg is surprisingly one of my favourite cities in Germany. It is also a great base for exploring other nearby Bavarian towns like Bamberg.
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