Cities & Culture

Medieval charm, great pubs, salt and a lust for life: Lüneburg

Lueneburg: along the river Ilmenau in the harbour ©DZT (Francesco Carovillano)

Whether you're looking for a stimulating sightseeing break or a relaxing holiday enjoying all kinds of leisure activities and the great outdoors, Lüneburg – the historical Hanseatic town built on salt, idyllically situated between the Elbe River and heathland – offers the best of both worlds.

Lüneburg dates back more than 1,000 years and is without a doubt one of the prettiest towns in northern Germany. Having survived World War II unscathed, it has retained its charming Medieval character. Wherever they go, visitors get a taste of Lüneburg's eventful history, as it rose to become one of the most important places in the Hanseatic League through its salt production. The Alter Kran, a historical crane at the former Ilmenau docks, was also used in the salt trade. It is one of Lüneburg's most famous landmarks and remains a defining feature of the riverside Wasserviertel district. Lüneburg is also a university town with youthful flair, where a shopping spree along the old gabled buildings is a real delight.

Do you want to tour some museums? The East Prussian State Museum documents the culture and heritage of East Prussia right up to 1945, while visitors can marvel at the display of drinking vessels spanning 1,200 years in the North German Brewery Museum. A short walk from the town centre lies Lüne Abbey, a haven of peace and contemplation founded in 1172 and set amid meadow orchards. The Kurpark spa gardens on the southern edge of the town centre follow the tradition of English landscape gardens and are another great place to relax. They are adjacent to the SaLü saltwater thermal baths, in which Lüneburg's therapeutic salt spring still wells up to this day.

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