Trier, dating back to the time when this land was ruled by the Romans, is the oldest city in Germany. It is set in the far west of the country, only about ten miles from the border of Luxembourg, and is known for the striking Trier Cathedral as well as being close to the wine-producing region of Mosel. Many attractions and monuments are dispersed throughout the city and feature the influence of the Ancient Romans, such as the well maintained signature city gate; also included in these attractions are the Roman baths, the amphitheatre, and the Roman Bridge, which can still be traversed as part of the main road into the city.
Because of its location on the Moselle River (a tributary of the Rhine), it is a frequent port stop for ships on Rhine River cruises. If Trier piques your interest for your German vacation, it’s easy to add to an itinerary, as the destination is simple to reach from many parts of the country. Connected by the incredibly efficient German train system to destinations such as Cologne, visitors will find planning a trip here to be easy. Adventurous visitors might want to rent a car instead of relying on the train system. If it’s been your dream to cruise along the Autobahn, Trier can be reached via motorway at a distance of two hours driving from Cologne, or two hours driving from Frankfurt. An alternative is to fly to Luxembourg, which is only 40 minutes away by car. However you reach Trier, the rich variety of historical sites is sure to impress you.
Originally founded by Augustus Caesar in 16 BC, Trier was named then Augustus Treverorum. While the Roman Empire occupied this area, their architectural and artistic influence shaped the city into the beautiful marvel it remains today, with many monuments and structures that are part of the UNESCO World Heritage collection of historical treasures and have been preserved and restored to their original splendor for visitors to enjoy for generations to come.
Roman Ruins in Trier Germany
Today, Trier Germany is best known for a wide variety of Roman-era and medieval buildings that have been well preserved. As a center of the ancient Roman Empire, Trier is home to a wealth of architectural ruins, from the Porta Nigra (the Black Gate), to the various Roman bath houses to the Trier Cathedral. Most renowned and spectacular of all Roman ruins in the country, the Black Gate was once part of a grand fortification that surrounded the city; today, it has been assimilated into a medieval church. Social bathing houses were a significant element in the Roman daily life, and as such, many of the ruins in Trier were part of the Roman baths; the best preserved of these once splendorous bathing structures in Germany and outside of Rome are the Imperial Baths of Trier. One of the only ancient ruins of the Roman Empire in Germany that is still in use today is the Trier Roman Amphitheatre. Ancient relics have been gathered in archeological excavations in Trier and have been gathered in one of the most substantial and well preserved Roman ruin artifact collections at the Rheinisches Landesmuseum, where the pieces are on display for all to experience for many years to follow.
Churches, Cathedrals & Museums
Most well known of sacred structures in this city is the beautifully constructed medieval Trier Cathedral, known locally as Trierer Dom. The original structure that stood in the place of the Trier Cathedral has since been destroyed; however, some of the ruins are still visible and have become part of the medieval construction of the church, and there are underground excavations beneath the site, which can be viewed in a guided tour. The Cathedral is best known as the home of the Holy Tunic. Said to be the robe that Jesus was wearing when he died, the Holy Tunic is only on display every few decades, but is kept at this cathedral. Still sought after by many Catholic pilgrims, St. Matthias Abbey Church, built in the 12th century in the Baroque style, is the shelter for the remains of Matthias, a witness to the resurrection and the apostle chosen to replace Judas. Other main sights in Trier Germany include the old Jewish cemetery and several museums, including the Toy Museum of Trier and the Karl Marx House. This museum features exhibits of the photographs, letters, poetry, and history of important historical figure Karl Marx.
Travelers that have spent time in Germany know that the holiday season in December can be a particularly magical time in this country. Cities become home to elaborate Christmas markets for the purchasing of gifts, listening to music, and eating festive foods. Trier has its own Christmas celebration, including an elaborate street festival in the main market square and also in front of the Trier Cathedral. Visitors who are interested in an immersion into local culture will want to consider traveling just to witness the beautiful Christmas market of Trier.
Trier Germany Hotels & Lodging
Within the vicinity of Trier are several options for accommodations all quite charming and unique. Set on the river is the Romerbruke Hotel, with nearly 50 rooms as well as a restaurant and terrace with river views. Centrally located right across the street from the Porta Nigra Roman Gate is the Mercure Hotel - within walking distance of most of the city's central attractions. Camper parking and hostels offer an affordable budget as well as a chance to meet up with other travelers in the area. Oftentimes, the proprietor of these local lodging establishments are more than happy to suggest places to see and things to do during your visit, including some favorite places to eat and gather.
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