850 different species on 26ha make Leipzig Zoo one of the most biodiverse zoos in Europe. Established in 1878 as a private zoological garden by innkeeper Ernst Pinkert it has been steadily expanded and modernised over the years. It not only serves to introduce visitors to exotic animals but has very active and successful wildlife conservation programmes including conservationary breeding and release projects.
Nikolaikirche is not only Leipzig’s largest church, it also has a storied history. In 1519 it was the site of Luther’s Leipzig Disputations where the rift between him and the Catholic Church became irreconcilable. It also saw the world premiere of Johann Sebastian Bach’s St. John’s Passion in 1724.
In the late 1980s it was the starting point for the Monday Demonstrations against the DDR (GDR) regime that were joined by up to 500,000 participants.
Construction of Leipzig’s Old Town Hall began in 1556 and it was not only seat of the city’s administration but the finest venue for social events for centuries. After construction of the new town hall was completed in 1905 it was renovated and in 1909 turned into the Museum of Leipzig Municipal History.
The marketplace is still in use for regular farmers’ markets and of course every year the Leipzig Christmas Market’s booth are set up right in front of the Old Town Hall.
Known as “Drallewatsch” in Leipzig it’s one of the cities three popular pub miles. Local restaurants offering home-style cooking alternate with trendy bars frequented by the students of Leipzig University.
When Johann Wolfgang von Goethe made his favorite inn a location in Faust I he created a gastronomic legend that has endured to this day. Today Auerbachs Keller still thrives and has been expanded to include several restaurants and a bar that are popular not just with Goethe fans.
Thomaskirche was built over the even older Marktkirche in 1222 and was then remodelled in 1496 to such an extent that it required reconsecration.
It is best known for the famous Thomaner boys’ choir and of course Johann Sebastian Bach who was employed by the church as Thomaskantor from 1723 until his death in 1750.
Just like Barfußgässchen Gottschedstraße is one of the city’s pub miles. However, the focus lies mostly on pubs and less on restaurants so it’s more popular with younger guests.
Today’s Gewandhaus is already the third building of this name erected in the same spot. It received its name from cloth and wool merchants that used to store their wares there. “Gewand” being an outdated German word for “clothing” or “dress”. In 1743 some of those merchants established an orchestra that was soon known as Gewandhausorchester and is still around today.
Leipzig Botanical Garden is part of Leipzig University and goes back all the way to 1539 making it Germany’s oldest botanical garden. Originally used to grow medicinal herbs it was moved to a new location and expanded to 3.5 ha. Today it presents 10,000 different species of plants.
In 2003 Yadegar Asisi began presenting gigantic panoramic pictures within former Gasometer II (a giant gas tank) of Leipzig’s public utility company. Every year a new picture is shown with a length of approximately 105m (344 feet) and a height of up to 35m (10 feet). Every picture is accompanied by an exhibition of the same topic.
Together with Barfußgässchen and Gottschedstraße it’s the third pub mile in Leipzig and just as Gottschedstraße tends to attract a younger crowd.
The Monument to the Battle of the Nations was erected in 1913 to commemorate the battle that took place just south of Leipzig from October 16th to 19th in 1813. A multinational army defeated the French troops under command of Napoleon himself and forced him to retreat.
Standing 91m (300 feet) tall it’s one of the largest monuments in Europe.