In many larger cities, pretty pedestrian zones with cozy cafés and bistros invite you to go shopping. The Königsallee in Düsseldorf, the Kurfürstendamm in Berlin and the Zeil in Frankfurt are particularly well known. Popular souvenirs are optical devices such as binoculars and cameras, porcelain, hand-blown glass and crystal, silver and steel goods, knives from Solingen, leather goods, sporting goods, Black Forest cuckoo clocks, toys from Nuremberg and Bavarian loden. Beautiful souvenirs from East Germany are musical instruments, carved wooden toys from the Ore Mountains and Meissen porcelain. There are weekly markets in almost every town, where fresh fruit and vegetables and other products from the region are offered. The most well-known market is the Viktualienmarkt in Munich.
- Searchforpublicschools: Offers schooling information of Germany in each level – compulsory, technical and higher education programs.
Generally Mon-Fri 08.00/09.00-20.00/22.00, Sat until 16.00, on the four Saturdays before Christmas until 18.00. In small towns, shops are often closed between 1pm and 3pm. Some retailers outside of city centers close on Wednesday afternoons. Exceptions: In the following federal states, shops are allowed to open around the clock on weekdays: Baden-Württemberg, Berlin, Brandenburg, Bremen, Hamburg, Hesse, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saxony-Anhalt, Schleswig-Holstein and Thuringia. In Berlin, shops are allowed to open on the Sundays in Advent from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. In Rhineland-Palatinate and Saxony, shops are allowed to stay open until 10 p.m. on weekdays.
In all major cities, visitors have a choice of theatres, concert halls and opera houses (the Hamburg State Opera, the Deutsche Oper Berlin, the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin and the National Theater in Munich are just a few of the most famous). In some cities, such as Hamburg, Bochum or Cologne, there are also musical houses. Nightclubs, bars with live shows and discos can also be found everywhere. Germany is internationally known for its techno scene, which is one of the largest of its kind in the world. Hip-hop and heavy metal also have many fans here. Berlin in particular is known for its diverse nightlife – here you can turn night into day. Hamburg’s Reeperbahn is the country’s best-known area for adult entertainment. In addition to the erotic offer, there is also a colorful selection of respected variety theatres, music bars and modern nightclubs. From spring to autumn there are large beer festivals throughout the country, the best known being the Oktoberfest in Munich and the Cannstatter Volksfest in Stuttgart. Numerous traditional folklore events take place in the rural areas. Mainly in the south you will find the well-known beer cellars and beer gardens. There are countless small wine bars in Rhineland-Palatinate, Franconia and Baden. A special experience is a visit to a Straußwirtschaft (known in Württemberg as a Besenwirtschaft), which can be found in almost all wine-growing regions in Germany and where winegrowers serve their own wine.
The hotel offer is extremely extensive and ranges from simple accommodation to luxury hotels. The German Hotel and Restaurant Association (DEHOGA) monitors the classification of hotels. One to five stars are awarded according to defined criteria in areas such as reception & service, rooms, gastronomy, event area, leisure time as well as quality and online activities or digitization. There are around 8,000 classified hotels in Germany that can be found using the Hotelstars.eu hotel search. The “Superior” award is given to top companies that have clearly exceeded the required minimum number of points in their category. A “hotel garni” does not have a restaurant and usually only offers breakfast, drinks and sometimes snacks in addition to accommodation. When choosing a hotel, the desired type of catering often plays a major role: only overnight stays, with breakfast, half board, full board or all inclusive. Hotel cooperations and local tourist associations publish their own hotel and accommodation directories. Some hotels are housed in castles, palaces and monasteries. Family hotels and country inns are available for family holidays, which often offer inexpensive half or full board. Numerous family hotels also have all-inclusive offers as well as good leisure, sports and fitness facilities as well as saunas, swimming pools and many wellness facilities.
Around 3000 campsites and tents are available throughout Germany. They are usually open from April to October, but there are also around 400 winter campsites available in the ski areas. Anyone wishing to camp outside of the designated campsites must obtain permission from the owner and/or the local police department. The Federal Association of the Camping Industry in Germany eV annually publishes the DDC Camping Guide Europe with over 430 classified campsites in Germany. The classification ranges from 1 to 5 stars. The online search is based on criteria such as location, with children, with a dog, classification, long-term camping, etc. The ADAC-Camping & Caravaning Guide is published annually and is available in all ADAC offices as well as in book and magazine stores. The ADAC also provides a camping guide online. This allows searching according to the criteria “location”, “leisure activities”, “equipment”, “dogs allowed / dogs forbidden”, “discounts” and “target group”. Information about campsites and campgrounds in Germany is also available from Deutscher Camping-Club e. V. (DCC) both in print form and online. In the online version, you can choose from campsites, motorhome parking spaces and farm camping in the six categories “unrated” to “exclusive” with 5 stars. You can search according to numerous criteria: location, sports facilities, dogs allowed / dogs forbidden, animation,
Other accommodation options
Around 450 youth hostels in Germany belong to the German Youth Hostel Association. A membership card, which is also valid internationally in 4000 youth hostels, can be requested from the German Youth Hostel Association, the individual DJH regional associations or online on the DJH website. In the high season (in big cities all year round) advance booking is recommended. Hostelling International, the worldwide network of non-profit youth hostel associations, currently offers inexpensive accommodation in 3,000 hostels in numerous countries, including Germany. A holiday stay in the country, whether on a farm, an estate, in a castle or in a palace or on a horse farm, is an experience especially for children. Adults, on the other hand, may feel that they are in good hands on a winery. A wide range of leisure activities ensure variety everywhere. landreise.de and bauernhofurlaub.de provide an overview. In holiday parks, the whole family gets their money’s worth thanks to varied entertainment and childcare. More information is available from major tour operators. Other popular accommodation types across Germany include bed and breakfasts, inns, holiday homes and apartments. More information is available from the regional tourist offices. On the wohnung.de platform, you can not only book accommodation, you can also find a lot of useful information about legal matters in the Advice section. Other booking platforms for accommodation throughout Germany are, for example, bed-and-breakfast. de and bedandbreakfast.eu. Houseboats, the floating holiday homes, are on lakes such as the Mecklenburg Lake District and on numerous rivers such as the Neckar, the Moselle, the Lahn and the Rhine with every imaginable comfort all over Germany or are firmly anchored. A sports boat license is not required to steer houseboats on some inland waterways. Houseboats can also be rented on the North and Baltic Seas. However, a sports boat license is required for boating on the sea. An alternative to a houseboat is a yacht, although the space is more cramped than on a houseboat. Advance booking is difficult for hiking holidays without a set route. Local tourist offices can help with reservations. There are often signs on the side of the road that say Fremdenzimmer or Zimmer Frei. One should always try to reach one’s next destination before 4pm, especially during the peak summer months.
34% Evangelical, 34% Roman Catholic; Jewish, Muslim (4%) and other Christian and non-Christian minorities.
Social Rules of Conduct
Manners: When greeting someone shakes hands. When invited to the host’s home, food and drink are often offered. Bouquets of flowers are always presented unwrapped (according to tradition, an odd number is given, and red roses are reserved exclusively for the partner). When making a phone call, you give your name first before asking for the person you want to call. Dress: Casual dress is acceptable everywhere, but smarter attire is expected in certain restaurants, at the opera, theater, concerts and social events. Evening wear is required on very special occasions. Smoking: Non-smoking zones are marked. Smoking is prohibited in public buildings and on public transport. Smoking is strictly prohibited in all airports, train stations and trains. Train stations and airports have designated smoking areas. In all federal states, smoking is prohibited in gastronomic establishments (restaurants, pubs, cafés, bars, discotheques, etc.) as well as in schools, offices and hospitals. In almost all federal states, however, there may still be separate smoking rooms in gastronomic establishments. Tipping: It is customary to tip 5-10% of the bill in restaurants and cafés, and 10% in taxis.
Best travel time
The ski season in the Alps runs from December to March. Optimal conditions are usually found in January. In recent years, December has often been too warm for good skiing conditions.
The weather in Germany is generally most pleasant from May to October.
Area (sq km)
83,783,942 (Source: homosociety)
Population density (per square km)
Population statistics year
Member of the EU
Main emergency number