Cities & Culture

Münster: the youthful charm of a city steeped in history

Münster: Lambertibrunnen auf dem Prinzipalmarkt, Spiegelung der alten Häuserbei Nacht ©Münster Marketing (Thomas Branse)

The cosmopolitan city of Münster is proud of its history spanning more than 1,200 years. Whether as a bishop's seat, a member of the Hanseatic League or a university city – Münster has always had an important role to play. The city earned its place in the annals of world history when the Peace of Westphalia was signed here.

Having won an award for having the best quality of life in the world, Münster is home to buildings that can tell legendary tales of the past. This is particularly true in the historical city centre. Take the extraordinarily charming setting of the Prinzipalmarkt square, for example, which is lined with 48 gabled buildings, many of which are joined together by an arcade. It goes without saying that shoppers will be in heaven here. Salzstrasse, Münster's oldest mercantile street, the Baroque treasures of Erbdrostenhof Palace, the Dominican Church and St. Clement's Church are all within walking distance. And the Picasso Museum is just a stone's throw away in its magnificent home in the Druffel'scher Hof.

From there, it's not far to the Domplatz square, where the mighty Cathedral of St. Paul and pretty, winding alleyways around the Überwasserkirche church are the main attractions. A detour to the Kreativkai waterfront, Münster's top nightlife spot by the city docks with its exciting mix of art and culture, restaurants and trendy clubs, will also leave a lasting impression. An important day in the city's history was 24 October 1648, when the Peace of Westphalia officially ended the Thirty Years' War. Although Münster will forever be associated with this event, the city is also firmly rooted in the here and now. This is evident from the proliferation of the locals' favourite mode of transport: the bicycle, with as many as 100,000 people cycling around the city every day. So visitors wanting to experience the real Münster should get on their bike!

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