Germany has many charming towns and no matter how many times we are traveling around Germany, we always manage to find few surprises, for which Germany always leave us speechless.
If you prefer smaller towns to larger ones, check out the list of our most charming towns in Germany. Each town is beautiful on its own way and definitely worth visiting.
Most charming towns in Germany
Amazing and spectacular historical buildings are the reason why Aachen can be found on the list of most charming towns in Germany. The city cathedral looks like from a Harry Potter movie and is actually the first German sight on Unesco World Heritage list. Aachen has been known for its thermal water ever since the Roman times, but Aachen is known also for the father of Europe – the Charlemagne. Wandering around its old town, among its picturesque streets, don’t forget to visit a bakery for the Printen (ginger bread cookies) – one of the most recognized things in Aachen.
I have special memories of Augsburg. When I was in high school, I spent one month of my summer holidays there, to learn German. Augsburg quickly got under my skin and I could even saw myself living there. I enjoyed its diversity and transformation from an interesting old town (Augsburg is one of the oldest German towns), to its urban and modern look, where lots is going on. Not to mention its green areas, which are perfect escape when you need peace and quiet. Augsburg is not just one of the most charming towns in Germany, but due to Fuggerei (the oldest social housing complex, which is still in use) and other historical sights also an important German town.
Bamberg is not just one of the most charming towns in Germany, but its old town is completely under Unesco World Heritage protection. Majority of people found themselves in Bamberg due to its symbol – the old town hall, but Bamberg is so much more, including the special local smoked beer, which should for sure get on your bucket list. Check out all the sights you can see if you only will spend one day in Bamberg.
Just 35 kilometers away from Salzburg in Austria, we find another charming town in Germany – Berchtesgaden. The town is a small one and so is its old city center. Due to its painted houses in Alpine style, Berchtesgaden is extremely picturesque. Even though its charming old town, most people visit Berchtesgaden for its nature. Its numerous hiking trails are perfect for young and old. If you are not keen on mountains and high altitudes, you can explore the underground, as Berchtesgaden is well known for salt mining. Visiting the mine is a perfect (family) experience. You can also visit the Eagle’s nest and Königssee Lake from here.
Esslingen am Neckar
One of the most charming towns in Germany for me is Esslingen am Neckar, which can be found just 15 kilometers from Stuttgart. With its half-timbered houses it does look like from a fairy-tale, but that is only half of it. In the middle of the town lies a castle hill offering amazing views and a perfect short hike among vineyards. What more could you wish for, right?
Freyburg is a tiny town in Saxony-Anhalt, but very important for Germany because of its Rotkappchen sparkling wine production – the bestselling sparkling wine in Germany. To see its charm best, hike up the hill with vineyards and indulge yourself with some local wine tasting.
The North-West Germany has lots of charming towns, which I could point out, but my heart belongs to Friedrichstadt. For its water canals Friedrichstadt looks like a town in Holland and that is why it is known as the Venice of the North. All the red brick houses with wooden clocks hanging on them and gardens with windmills really makes Friedrichstadt one of the most charming towns in Germany.
If you enjoy winter sports, especially ski jumps, you for sure have heard for Garmisch-Partenkirchen. A walk around the old town is cute and because of the life music from the oom-pha bands, make the experience even more vivid. When you find yourself in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, make sure to visit the spectacular Partnach Gorge, which is icing on the cake of this charming town in Germany.
Not far away from Frankfurt lies a small town of Gelnhausen. Gelnhausen does not get on typical tourist radars and that is why it is even more interesting to see it. It is perfect as one day or half-day trip from Frankfurt. If you like to read books from the Grimm brothers, you just got yourself another good reason to stop in the town. The German fairy-tale road runs through the town, which offers several beautiful sights that puts Gelnhausen on our list of most charming towns in Germany.
From all the towns on this list, Heidelberg was the most crowded one. Heidelberg is for sure one of the most charming towns in Germany, but only if you can see it without all the daily visitors flocking into town. The best thing is to wander around Heidelberg’s old town early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Don’t forget to hike up to its renaissance Palace and enjoy the views from this amazing red sandstone structure. Heidelberg has been known as the University City ever since 14th century.
If you are looking for a charming town in Germany, which is perfect to enjoy during the summer, you should definitely stop at Lindau. It lies right next to the Bodensee, what makes it perfect for swimming and other water activities for you and the whole family. A stroll around the old town is amazing due to its many historically rich buildings, cute cafes and handy-craft shops.
Magdeburg was almost completely demolished during the WW2, but the renovation brought back all its formal glory. I have spent only one day in Magdeburg, but managed to find several sights for which I can easily put Magdeburg on the list of most charming towns in Germany. Make sure not to skip the city cathedral and its water show, Hundertwasser house, boat ride on the river Elbe and other interesting tourist attractions.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber
What can be more charming than a town, which can be also found on the German Romantic Road? Lots of people describe Rothenburg ob der Tauber as the most beautiful medieval town in Germany. They are not wrong, as the town is gorgeous. Its fairy-tale image, half-timbered houses, squares, the town wall and all other cute things, just call for a visit. There are many things to do in Rothenburg ob der Tauber for which this can easily be marked as one of the most charming towns in Germany!
The German Romantic Road is full of surprises and as soon Simon and I found ourselves in Rüdesheim, we knew this is the perfect place for romance. Rüdesheim is a small town, but its tourist attractions and things to do are grand, even more if you enjoy good wine, scenic views, rich history, castles and boat rides. Rüdesheim is one of my sweethearts and for sure one of the most charming towns in Germany I have visited so far.
There are many charming towns in Germany and I cannot wait to find another one, which deserves to be put on this list.