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Discover the beautiful city of Magdeburg, Germany, with its rich history, stunning architecture, and thriving cultural scene. From the impressive Magdeburg Cathedral and the unique Green Citadel to the Old Fortress and Rotehorn City Park, this article provides practical information and highlights the must-see attractions of this fascinating city. Plan your visit and experience the best of Magdeburg!

Magdeburg (Germany)

Magdeburg is a beautiful city in the eastern part of Germany, located on the banks of the River Elbe. It is the capital of the state of Saxony-Anhalt and is known for its rich history, stunning architecture, and cultural significance. Visitors to the city will be amazed by the city’s historical landmarks, its green spaces, and its thriving cultural scene.

Magdeburg Panorama
Magdeburg Panorama

Practical Information

  • Population: Approximately 238,000
  • City Area: 201.93 km²
  • Language: The main language spoken in Magdeburg is German. In popular tourist areas or large establishments, English may be spoken or understood.
  • German Currency: Euro (EUR)
  • Time: Central European Time (CET) (UTC+1)
  • Visa: Schengen visa
  • Stores: the city has a wide variety of stores, from high-end fashion boutiques to local souvenir shops. Visitors can find everything they need in the city’s many shopping districts.


Magdeburg, located in Eastern Germany, has a long and fascinating history that stretches back to the 9th century. It was founded by Holy Roman Emperor Otto I in 805 AD and quickly became an important trading center due to its strategic location on the banks of the River Elbe.

During the medieval period, Magdeburg flourished as a major city in the Holy Roman Empire and played a significant role in the development of the Hanseatic League, a powerful alliance of merchant guilds. The city was known for its economic prosperity and architectural splendor.

A view of the city

In 1524, Magdeburg became a focal point of the Protestant Reformation led by Martin Luther. The city embraced Protestantism, and the teachings of Luther spread throughout the region. However, Magdeburg also faced immense challenges during the Thirty Years’ War in the 17th century. The city was besieged and ultimately devastated in 1631 by Imperial and Catholic forces.

Despite the destruction, Magdeburg managed to rebuild and recover. It became a center for industry, trade, and culture in the following centuries. During the industrial revolution, the city became an important manufacturing hub, particularly for heavy machinery, textiles, and sugar production.

Unfortunately, Magdeburg suffered significant damage during World War II, as Allied bombing raids targeted its industrial infrastructure. After the war, the city underwent extensive reconstruction, preserving its historic landmarks while also embracing modern development.

Magdeburg Panorama

Today, Magdeburg is the capital of the state of Saxony-Anhalt and continues to thrive as a vibrant cultural and economic center. Its historical significance, architectural treasures, and ongoing revitalization make it a fascinating destination for visitors seeking to explore Germany’s past and present.

How to get there

Magdeburg is well-connected to other cities in Germany, and there are several convenient ways to reach the city:

  1. By Train: The Deutsche Bahn (German Railways) operates regular train services to and from Magdeburg. The city has its own central train station, Magdeburg Hauptbahnhof, which is a major transportation hub. Direct trains connect Magdeburg to cities like Berlin, Hamburg, Leipzig, Dresden, and many others. The train journey offers comfort and efficiency, allowing you to enjoy scenic views along the way.
  2. By Bus: Long-distance bus services, such as FlixBus and Infobus, provide affordable transportation options to Magdeburg from various cities in Germany. These bus services often have multiple stops within the city, including the central bus station, making it convenient to reach your destination.
  3. By Car: Magdeburg is easily accessible by car, as it is located at the intersection of major highways. The A2 and A14 motorways connect the city to other parts of Germany. The travel time and routes may vary depending on your starting location, but using a GPS navigation system or online maps can help you plan your journey efficiently.
  4. By Air: Magdeburg has its own airport, Magdeburg-Cochstedt Airport (CSO), located approximately 50 kilometers from the city center. However, the number of flights and destinations served by the airport may be limited. Alternatively, you can fly into larger airports nearby, such as Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER) or Leipzig/Halle Airport (LEJ), and then take a train or bus to Magdeburg.

It is advisable to check the schedules, availability, and prices of various transportation options while planning your trip to Magdeburg. The mode of transportation you choose will depend on your preferences, budget, and the starting location of your journey.


Cathedral: The Magdeburg Cathedral is one of the most impressive Gothic structures in Germany. The cathedral was built in the 13th century and is home to many valuable works of art, including a priceless collection of medieval manuscripts.


Oldest Gothic Cathedral in Germany: Magdeburg is home to the oldest Gothic cathedral in Germany, known as the Magdeburg Cathedral or Magdeburger Dom. This impressive architectural masterpiece dates back to the 13th century and showcases stunning medieval art and sculptures.

Monastery of Our Lady: The Monastery of Our Lady is a beautiful complex of buildings that dates back to the 11th century. The monastery was originally founded as a Benedictine abbey and played an important role in the development of the city.

Monastery of the Theotokos
Monastery of the Theotokos

Church of St. John: The Church of St. John is a stunning example of Baroque architecture. The church was built in the 18th century and is home to many valuable works of art, including a beautiful altarpiece.

Church of St. John
Church of St. John

Town Hall: The Magdeburg Town Hall is one of the most impressive Renaissance buildings in Germany. The town hall was built in the 16th century and is known for its ornate facade and beautiful interior.

City Hall
City Hall

Green Citadel: The Green Citadel is a unique building that was designed by the famous architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser. The building is covered in green plants and features a variety of shops, cafes, and apartments.

Зelena citadel
Green Citadel

The Green Citadel: One of the city’s most unique landmarks is the Green Citadel (Grüne Zitadelle), designed by the renowned Austrian artist and architect, Friedensreich Hundertwasser. This vibrant building stands out with its unconventional design, colorful facades, and rooftop gardens, creating a harmonious blend of art and architecture.

Old Fortress: The Old Fortress is a historic fortress that dates back to the 10th century. The fortress played an important role in the city’s defense and is now home to a museum that tells the story of Magdeburg’s history.

Rotehorn City Park: The Rotehorn City Park is a beautiful park that is located on an island in the River Elbe. The park is home to many walking and biking trails, as well as a variety of wildlife.

City park Rotehorn
City park Rotehorn

Interesting facts about Magdeburg

  1. Birthplace of Otto von Guericke: Magdeburg is the birthplace of Otto von Guericke, a notable scientist and inventor. Guericke is best known for his invention of the vacuum pump and his famous experiment with the Magdeburg Hemispheres, which demonstrated the power of air pressure.
  2. UNESCO World Heritage Site: The waterway system of the Magdeburg Water Bridge, which connects the Elbe-Havel Canal and the Mittelland Canal, has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This engineering marvel allows ships to cross the Elbe River, making it the longest navigable aqueduct in the world.
  3. Hub of Education and Research: Magdeburg is renowned as a hub for education and research. The city is home to the Otto von Guericke University, named after the aforementioned scientist, which offers a wide range of academic disciplines. Additionally, Magdeburg houses various research institutions and centers of excellence, fostering innovation and intellectual advancement.

Conclusion: Magdeburg is a beautiful city with a rich history and many cultural attractions. Visitors to the city will be amazed by its stunning architecture, green spaces, and thriving cultural scene. Whether you’re interested in history, art, or simply enjoying the beauty of nature, Magdeburg is a city that has something for everyone.

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