After many years of connecting through the Frankfurt FRA, I finally was able get out of the airport and see the city. From the window seat of the airplane, I caught my first glimpse of Frankfurt. The countryside is green, dotted with villages, and I could spot the Main river. All of this whet my appetite to explore the city.
Finally, the travel gods smiled on me. I booked a trip to Tunisia that included a 24 hour layover in Frankfurt! As I found out, Frankfurt is the perfect city for a layover because of its walkable city center and efficient train system. I was surprised at the amount of ground I was able to cover in a short time.
Here's what we were able to cover in a day:
Accommodations: Five Elements Hostel
First, we needed a centrally located comfortable place to stay and rest during our layover. We checked into the Five Elements Hostel which is conveniently situated near the Hauptbahnhof. Everything we saw in the city was walkable from this hostel.
Located only 3 train station stops and 15 minutes from the airport is the stylish and cozy 5 Elements Hostel. We booked a private room which came with a stunning top floor view of the city center:
Frankfurt is a modern city. It is nicknamed Mainhattan for its tall buildings and "Bankfurt" because of its banking industry. In fact, the European Central Bank is headquartered here. But don't let the buildings fool you - Frankfurt has plenty of historic and cultural sights.
We crossed the footbridge to the "new" old town, the recently renovated Altstadt.
House of the Golden Scales
While Frankfurt's skyline looks as cosmopolitan as Hong Kong or Manhattan, the city historically was known as having one of the most beautiful and largest Medieval old towns in Germany. In 1944, Frankfurt was bombed in a WW2 air raid, destroying 2,000 of the city's historic half timbered buildings. The DomRÃ¶mer Project is a building project that worked to restore and rebuild much of the city center to its historic Medieval design. Many of the buildings were recently unveiled in 2018.
Below is one of the most famous buildings, called the Goldene Waage, which was meticulously restored to its Medieval architecture using old photographs, blueprints, and expert craftsmanship.
âA few of the historic buildings in the old town survived the war relatively intact, including the medieval church, Old St. Nicholas, which is famous for its 47 bells.
To add a bit of culture to your layover trip, check out the StÃ¤del Museum, which has an impressive gallery of European art as well as a Picasso print exhibit on display through June. The museum also has a restaurant and free WiFi.
One of the best parts about visiting Germany is the food! Be sure to order the Frankfurters (of course!) and Apfelwein, which is a apple cider typical of the region. Another unique dish to the region is the Frankfurt Green Sauce, which is potatoes and eggs in an herb sauce that reminded me a blend of Peruvian Papa a la Huancaina in pesto sauce (aka. delicious).
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