Bremen is located on the Weser River and sea trade has always been in Bremen’s blood. Going back to the 17th century products like coffee started arriving to Germany and the first German coffee house soon opened in Bremen.
We stayed in a stellplatz which is located just on the edge of the River Weser. It cost 15 euros to park and electricity was metered and an additional cost on a pay as you use meter. The pitches were very shaded from large oak trees, which dropped acorns on the motorhome all night and kept us awake. So this is one stopover we don’t recommend.
We caught the ferry across the River Weser for 5 euros return and walked along the river bank. It was a really pleasant walk and took us about 10 minutes to get to the area of Bremen known as Schnoor Quarter.
The Schnoor Quarter is Bremen’s oldest district. There are about 100 buildings dating back as early as 15th century. The streets are like little mazes and some no wider than a person.
Most the buildings are now homes to artists, galleries or workshops and there are plenty that are restaurants or bars to choose from.
We walked up to market square and the first landmark we came across was St Peters Cathedral. This beautiful cathedral is over 1200 years old, its distinctive early Gothic architecture dates from the 13th century.
The town hall is a UNESCO World Heritage site and was built between 1405 and 1410. The façade is in the style of the Weser renaissance and this was added in the 17th century. The ratskeller in the basement is the home to the largest repository of German wines.
Located right in front of the Town Hall is the Roland Statue which is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. There are 26 Roland statues in Germany and the one in Bremen is the largest, standing at 5.55 metres and the most famous.
Haus der Bürgerschaft is the State Parliament building and it was designed in 1966 and caused much controversy.
On the west side of the market square there is a row of buildings which consist of (from left to right) Sparkasse which is a savings bank with façade from 1755, Rathsapotheke which is a pharmacy and Akzise which is a customs house which both date back from 1595 and then on the right end is a more recent addition of Deutsches Haus.
The Schütting was built in 1537. It initially served the city’s merchants and tradesmen as a guild house until 1849, when it became Bremen’s chamber of commerce.
Colin had to try a Bratwurst from one of the kiosks for 3 euros although it came in a rather small roll.
Located to the side of the Town Hall is a bronze statue which dates back to 1951 and is the best known representation of the Towns Musicians.
Böttcherstraße is a street in the historic centre, located just off market square. It is only about 100m long, it is famous for its unusual architecture. Most of its buildings were erected between 1922 and 1931. The street and its buildings are a rare example of an architectural ensemble belonging to a variant of the expressionist style.
We continued down to St Martins Quay and along the river bank to the many bars and restaurants.
There are plenty of other things to do in Bremen including a lovely big shopping centre and a great selection of museums and you can even go to the Mercedes Benz factory (although the tour is only in English on a Friday).