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Best Things to do in Wiesbaden – Ultimate Guide 2020

By Rajoo - July 7, 2020
Biebrich Palace

If you are looking for some unique experience in Germany, then this is the place to stop by as there are best things to do in Wiesbaden – “Nice of the North”. The capital of the state of Hesse, Wiesbaden is a spa town on mineral springs that have been harnessed since the Romans. There are stately monuments like the glass-domed Kurhaus (Spa House), dainty gardens and old-world infrastructure like a funicular train from 1888 that still uses water ballast to travel up and down the Neroberg hill. It isn’t just the water that gives Wiesbaden its health-giving reputation but for making Riesling wine. Let’s explore the best things to do in Wiesbaden.

10 Best Things to Do in Wiesbaden

1. Nerobergbahn

Wiesbaden Nerobergbahn
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons

The train shuttling to the top of the Neroberg to the north of Wiesbaden is one of the best things to do in Wiesbaden as it is the only funicular railways in the world still using water ballast as a propulsion system. Water is pumped into the train at the top of the hill to make it heavier than the one at the bottom, and as this train descends the slope, a steel cable pulls the up-bound car to the top. No other railways in Germany still use this propulsion method, which has functioned since the 440-metre line opened in 1888. 

2. Neroberg

In 1851 the architect Philipp Hoffmann built a small mountain park on the peak, dotted with monuments and amenities. The centrepiece is a Classical Monopteros temple, where the best view of Wiesbaden can be seen. A hotel built on the crest of the hill burnt down in 1989, leaving a solitary tower is now occupied by a restaurant. There’s also an Art Deco-style open-air pool and finally, under a terrace created as a memorial to the First World War, there’s a 4.1-hectare vineyard growing Riesling grapes.

3. Kurhaus

Kurhaus
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Wiesbaden’s main spa building is a glorious Neoclassical building with Art Nouveau flourishes, most memorably in the metal and glass dome. The building and its opulent ballrooms are put to use as the venue for high-profile events, as well as Wiesbaden’s high-stakes casino and a posh restaurant. Take a turn around the grounds, made up of the Bowling Green and its fountains on the west side for a surreal experience.

4. Kurpark

On the east side of the Kurhaus is the English-style Kurpark, which was landscaped in 1852. Right in front of the Kurhaus is the Kurpark Weiher, an ornamental lake with a fountain that shoots a water jet six metres in the air. You can hire a boat for the lake and visit terrace cafes in the vicinity. When Germany competes at a major football tournament a big screen is set up in the Kurpark, and other big events like concerts and political addressed are also conducted here. 

5. St Elizabeth’s Church

St Elizabeth’s Church
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Another best thing to do in Wiesbaden is to visit a Russian Orthodox church completed in 1855. This was built by Duke Adolf of Nassau as a memorial to his Russian wife, Grand Duchess Elizabeth Mikhailovna who died in childbirth. Adolf built the church around her tomb and entrusted the designs to Philipp Hoffmann who studied Orthodox architecture especially for the project. You can see the gilded onion domes and head to the cemetery, one of Western Europe’s oldest Russian Orthodox burial places. At the interior, you can view the iconostasis, by the Estonian-German painter Carl Timoleon von Neff and Elizabeth’s tomb.

6. Marktkirche

The central tower of this captivating Neo-Gothic church climbs almost 100 metres above Wiesbaden’s central Schlossplatz. When construction was finished in 1862 this was the largest- brick-built construction in the Duchy of Nassau. It had to be capacious to meet the needs of a population that had doubled in the previous 20 years. In the chancel, you won’t be able to miss the five life-sized statues. These were donated by Duke Adolf and represent Christ in the centre and the evangelist’s Mark, John, Matthew and Luke, from left to right. The polygonal bronze and iron pulpit has an interesting past as it was only supposed to be a placeholder for a future marble design.

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7. Kochbrunnen

One of the best things to do in Wiesbaden is visit Kochbrunnen. Kochbrunnen is the best-known and hottest spring in Wiesbaden which emerges on its namesake square at 66°C. There’s also a drinking water fountain on the square under a Neo-Baroque pavilion. The spring was first recorded in the 14th century, and that water is forced up from a depth of 2,000 metres, filtered through a processing plant and then channelled here. Kochbrunnen bursts from its fountain at 370 litres per minute and has a slight sulphur smell. Inspecting the fountain you’ll see that the water comes out clear, but after sitting in the basin for an hour, it takes on a yellowish tone.

8. Museum Wiesbaden

Museum Wiesbaden
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons

The three-winged building for the Museum Wiesbaden took shape in the early 1910s, but its collection goes back at least a century before to the collections of the writer and diplomat Johann Isaak von Gerning, a contemporary of Goethe. The three sections are an art museum shining for its 19th and 20th-century painting, a collection of antiquities put together by the House of Nassau and a natural history wing abounding with zoological specimens and fossils. Art aficionados will appreciate the works of artists like Adolph Menzel, Franz von Lenbach, Max Beckmann, and Bauhaus. The fossil collection, running to thousands of specimens will thrill natural scientists, and there are Roman monuments and tombs as well.

9. Biebrich Palace

The palace was commissioned by George August, Count of Nassau-Idstein, and after he died it became the property of another branch of the family, the Nassau-Usingen dynasty. Today the building is used for conferences and ceremonies by the Hessian state government. From the peaceful Schlosspark, which sweeps out behind you can take in the palace’s rotunda. This is topped with 16 statues of ancient gods arranged in pairs in two sets of eight, depicting Minerva and Mars, Venus and Mercury, Jupiter and Juno and Apollo and Diana. Every May, Wiesbaden’s International Horse Show is held in the park and is now in its 82nd year.

10. Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden

Staatstheater Wiesbaden
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Whether you’re in the mood for opera, ballet, musical theatre or a classical concert, the Hessian State Theatre is a venue with prestige, sumptuous architecture and a lot of history. The prolific Viennese duo Fellner & Helmer won the contract to design the theatre in the 1890s, and used their Neo-Baroque template for a building that is amazing inside and out.  This event was inaugurated in 1896 and is one of the most prestigious opera and theatre festivals in the world. It welcomes visiting companies from around Europe and puts on smaller recitals, seminars, poetry readings and art exhibitions.

Plan your vacation to Wiesbaden right away and add all these Best Things to Do in Wiesbaden without fail. Check some of the best Germany holiday packages and book it now with Pickyourtrail for an amazing experience. Please leave a Whatsapp inquiry for more options.

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