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Europe > Central Europe > Germany > Thuringia > Saalfeld

Saalfeld

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Saalfelder Feengrotten (Saalfeld Fairy Grottoes)

Saalfeld is a city in the Saalfeld-Rudolstadt area in Thuringia, Germany.

Understand[edit]

It is situated by the Saale River, 48 km (30 mi) south of German cultural capital Weimar and 130 km (81 mi) south-west of Leipzig. The population of the district is 118,000, that of the tri-city area is 58,000 and Saalfeld town proper is 26,800. It is best known internationally as the former capital of the branch of the house of Wettins (known amongst English-speakers as the Windsors) that is today's British royal family.

Get in[edit]

By train[edit]

  • 1 Saalfeld station. Since the completion of the Leipzig–Erfurt–Nuremberg high-speed route that bypasses Saalfeld, intercity trains from Leipzig (1:45 h) or Stuttgart (4:15 h) via Nuremberg (2½ h) only call once a day, respectively. The nearest opportunities to change from high-speed to regional trains are in Erfurt (1:05, hourly regional train) or Bamberg (1:40 h). From Leipzig there is an hourly regional train service, taking just over two hours, also stopping in Naumburg (1:10) and Jena (40 min). Saalfeld (Saale) station (Q320974) on Wikidata Saalfeld station on Wikipedia

By car[edit]

Saalfeld is located some 40 km off the A4 (Frankfurt–Erfurt–Dresden) and A9 (Berlin–Leipzig–Nuremberg) motorway, respectively. Driving from Erfurt or Weimar takes just over an hour, from Leipzig 1½ to two hours.

By plane[edit]

The nearest airports are Erfurt (ERF IATA; 65 km away), Leipzig/Halle (LEJ IATA; 135 km) and Nuremberg (NUE IATA; 200 km).

Get around[edit]

Map of Saalfeld

The town is compact and walkable, but there are also regular buses and taxis running around

See[edit]

As well as the medieval town centre, and the surrounding forests and lakes of Thuringia:

  • 1 Feengrotten. the nationally famous fairy grottoes
  • 2 Schloss Saalfeld (Saalfeld palace). the palace of Queen Victoria's grandparents, the Saxe-Coburg. Now a regional government building

Do[edit]

Buy[edit]

The area is a rewarding place to shop for unique craftsworks made from glass, ceramic and precious stones.

Eat[edit]

There are several butchers in the town center who grill and sell the justly famous Thüringer Bratwurst (Thuringia sausage) in the afternoon.

  • Hotel Anker. offers a good mix of classic and modern German dishes such as velk steak and locally caught trout.In the past hosted the German Kaiser (Emperor).

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

There is nearly a dozen hotels and pensions in the area. Except for the high peak season around July, you should be able to just turn up and find a place to stay.

Connect[edit]

Go next[edit]

  • The forests, mountains and lakes of Thuringia are at hand, they are so close you can simply walk there!
  • Rudolstadt (8 minutes by half-hourly train)
  • Jena (40 min by half-hourly train, or cycle along the Saale bike trail) – university city with a historic old town, high-tech research and industries plus student lifestyle.
  • Weimar (50 km north; 1:20 h by train via Jena-Göschwitz) – capital of classical German literature and theatre.
  • Sonneberg (50 km south; 1:30 h by train and bus via Pressig-Rothenkirchen) – base for hiking or winter sports in the Thuringian Forest and traditional centre of toy makers.
  • Erfurt (55 km northwest; 1:05 h by hourly train) – state capital of Thuringia, medieval old town core
  • Mödlareuth (60 km southeast, no viable public transport link) – dubbed "Little Berlin", this village on the Bavaro-Thuringian state border was separated by the Iron Curtain during Cold War.
  • Kronach (65 km south, one hour by train) – well-preserved old town and castle, hometown of Renaissance painter Lucas Cranach


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