Bamberg Old Town
A centre of imperial and episcopal power for almost a thousand years, and often referred to as the Rome of Franconia, Bamberg stands on seven hills surrounded by beautiful countryside. Dominated by its imperial cathedral, the town is a unique and superbly maintained masterpiece of urban design, uniting medieval and baroque architecture.
Bamberg’s well-preserved old town comprises three historical districts – the episcopal town, the island town and the market gardener’s town. All three are part of the UNESCO World Heritage site and provide a fascinating example of how central European towns were built up around the basic layouts established in the early Middle Ages. Bamberg was given special status as far back as 1007, when Heinrich II was building the town into a centre of episcopal and sovereign power, making it the centre of the newly founded diocese and turning it into a second Rome.
Five churches in the form of a Latin cross mark the layout of the town. The historical townscape features numerous monuments from the 11th to the 18th century and some 1,200 architectural monuments. With its four towers, the imperial cathedral of St. Peter and St. George is the most prominent building.
Inside are the Bamberg Rider, a priceless masterpiece of consummate simplicity; the tomb of Pope Clemence II, the only papal grave in Germany; and the tomb of the Emperor Heinrich II and his wife Cunigunde.
Domplatz (Cathedral Square) is bordered by the impressive baroque New Palace and the Alte Hofhaltung Palace. Other highlights include the Brückenrathaus, the rose garden with a view of the old town, the tanners’ cottages by the old canal, the mill district and the fisherman’s village known as Little Venice.And then, what with this being Bavaria, there is Bamberg’s beer. This is where you’ll find the famous smoked beer, which, along with other distinctive brews, is best sampled on one of the special Beer Tasting Tours, which will take you to various bars and breweries in the town.
Town of Bamberg
UNESCO World Heritage since 1993
From the selection criteria
“An outstanding and representative example of an early medieval town in central Europe, both in its plan and its surviving ecclesiastical and secular
Bamberg has three inscriptions on the list of the World Heritage Documentary: the two impressive Reichenau manuscripts of the first millennium and the
The “innercity commercial horticulture in Bamberg” has been added to the Bavarian State Register of Intangible Cultural Heritage.