Impressive, exciting, colourful, mighty and tragic: Nuremberg has reflected German history since the Middle Ages. Protected by the castle, a new spirit enlivened the city at a time when few other places could offer such a quality of life. And the same is still true today.

Nuremberg and its castle: To this day, the city's skyline is still dominated by the mighty fortress built in around 1140 during the reign of Emperor Konrad III. Nuremberg's historical mile ends (or begins) at the castle and features ornately decorated churches, elaborate fountains and the Tucherschloss Museum. In stark contrast, other sites in Nuremberg serve as necessary reminders of the darker years in the city's long history. They include the Documentation Centre at the former Nazi party rally grounds, where the National Socialists staged their vast marching processions, and Memorium Nuremberg Trials, where the chief perpetrators of the Nazi atrocities were tried and convicted in 1946.

Turning to happier thoughts, December sees the arrival of Nuremberg's world-famous Christkindlesmarkt. Alternatively, there's the Toy Museum, with exhibits dating back to the early modern period. The Germanic National Museum, meanwhile, delves even further back in time. Germany's largest museum of cultural history, it contains 1.3 million fantastic exhibits that document changing times. The locals also show their love of tradition by enjoying the city's staple snack, the Nuremberg rostbratwurst. Records indicate that these delicious little sausages have been served up here since the 14th century. Looking into their history really is a culinary delight.

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