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Sightseeing

 

Neues Rathaus © HMTG / Kirchner: Neues Rathaus

 

In the Heart of the Old Town

The historic half-timbered buildings in the Old Town are one of the most impressive sights in the city centre. The magnificent Market Church and the Old Town Hall are the southernmost examples of North German brick Gothic architecture. Stroll around picturesque lanes, explore upmarket boutiques, relax at attractive cafés and restaurants. Ballhofplatz, one of the most peaceful squares in the Old Town, is home to a theatre and is the venue for all manner of celebrations in summer. Just a few yards further along, you can relax on the banks of the River Leine and watch the world go by. This is where Germany’s oldest flea market takes place on Saturdays.

 

Public Art

The early 1970s saw the launch of a spectacular art project in the streets of the state capital. This has meanwhile grown into 200 works of art, including numerous tram and bus stops, creating a unique cityscape. Niki de Saint Phalle’s famous Nanas tower above the banks of the River Leine. Initially highly controversial, these three buxom ladies have long since become one of the most popular photo sites in the city.

 

Royal Gardens of Herrenhausen

Baroque palace and garden world

Schloss Herrenhausen © HMTG: Herrenhausen Palace

Grosser Garten

The jewel in the crown. Hannover has an exceptional woman to thank for the greatest treasure that the city possesses: the Baroque garden in Herrenhausen was created by Electress Sophie (1630-1714).

Great Parterre and Bell Fountain © Hassan Mahramzadeh: Great Parterre and Bell Fountain

Music, dance and theatre at Herrenhausen – this tradition thrives today with drama in the hedge theatre, concerts, festivals, world-class small-scale performing arts and international fireworks competitions to enliven Grosser Garten in Herrenhausen all year round.

Georgengarten

A landscape painting to wander in.

Herrenhausen Alley © Karl Johaentges: Herrenhausen Alley

From its very beginning Georgengarten, laid out in the English landscape style, was intended as a public park and has remained so till today. For Hanoverians, Georgengarten in the summer is their second home, alive with knockabout games of football and volleyball, even cricket and baseball practice, while entire families have barbecue parties or couples bring picnics. Every August the Chopin Society stages its classical open-air concert for thousands.

Berggarten

Botanical treasures and a world-famous orchid collection.

Ornamental Courtyard in Spring © Herrenhäuser Gärten: Ornamental Courtyard in Spring

Once, Berggarten was a mulberry tree plantation for the Elector's silkworm farms. Today it is a treasure house of botanic diversity. Click here to visit the german website of the Berggarten.

The Grotto by Niki de Saint Phalle

The world-famous artist Niki de Saint Phalle created her last work of art in Herrenhausen's Grosser Garten, transforming the 330-year-old Grotto into a place of mystery and magic.

Niki de Saint Phalle Grotto

For further information about the opening hours of the Herrenhausen Gardens click here and here.

 

The Old Town

Experience medieval Hannover in the charming Old Town with its narrow alleys and numerous sights

Old Town © HMTG: Old Town

Hannover is ideal for exploring on foot. Stroll through the many different periods of history, experience the sites and attractions around the Leine Palace, explore the numerous picture-book corners with medieval half-timbered houses in the Old Town, and lots of more surprises – come walkabout and discover Hannover! To visit the german website of the old town click here.

 

The Old Town Hall

A historical building dating back to 1500 a.d.

Altes Rathaus Hannover

The old Town Hall was built over a period of more than 100 years. The earliest part (from 1410) overlooks the Schmiedestrasse (Blacksmith Street), the later wing next to the market was erected on the foundations of the 13th century trade hall. The adjacent wing in the Koebelinger Str. is called the "Chemists' Wing ("Apothekenflügel"), because it was the location of the Town Hall's pharmacy. This wing was later rebuilt in Italian Romanesque style, after a citizen's "action group" led by a well known neo-Gothic architect, Conrad Wilhelm Hase, managed to save the entire building from demolition in 1844. Hase was subsequently commissioned to renovate the remaining wings in their original style of 1500, with its exceptional gothic gables and the ornamental frieze. To visit the german website of the old town hall click here.

 

The New Town Hall

Built in 1913, it is the seat of the mayor of Hannover.

Neues Rathaus © HMTG/Christian Wyrwa: Das Neue Rathaus bei Nacht

Many visitors are quite astonished to hear that the magnificent building they are standing in front of is, actually, the "new" town hall. Its size and grand architectural style make it look more "historical", like a relict from more majestic times, when Hannover used to be a kingdom. The town hall itself was, however, ceremonially opened on 20 June 1913, after twelve years building time. The new townhall is the residence of the mayor, the head of the municipal administration. It is here, that the political bodies hold their sessions, receptions for official guests of the city and art exhibitions are held, the "Citizen's Office" is also here. The doors of the town hall are always wide open to all visitors. Four scale models of Hannover are on permanent display under the nearly one hundred metre high dome of the town hall lobby, showing the city as it was in the Middle Ages, before World War II , the destruction of 1945 and the townscape of today. These models are always immensely popular amongst the visitors.

 

Maschsee

A maritime paradise right in the city centre!

Maschsee © HMTG / Udo Segreff: Maschsee Lake

The Maschsee Lake offers the people of Hannover a recreational area in the heart of the city, both on the water and all around it: for yachting, canoeing and pedal-boating, for joggers, skaters and strollers. On the banks of the lake you will find the celebrated Sprengel Museum Hannover. To get some impressions of the famous Maschsee-Fest click here.

 

Hannover Adventure Zoo

On animal safari around the world with exotic landscapes, over 2000 animals and amazing shows at Hannover Adventure Zoo.

Eisbär vor Yukon Bay Kulisse © Erlebnis-Zoo Hannover: Yukon Bay

150 Years of Hannover Adventure Zoo! Explore the animal kingdoms of the seven Zoo Worlds: 1. Zambezi / Africa 2. Kibongo / Africa 3. Yukon Bay / Canada 4. Jungle Palace / India 5. Meyer's Farm / Rural Lower Saxony 6. Outback / Australia 7. Mullewapp & Brodelburg  – they offer extraordinary encounters, unforgettable impressions and above all lots of fun for all the family.

 

Opera House

One of the most beautiful neo-classical buildings of its kind.

Das Gebäuder der Oper im nächtlichen Glanz. © HMTG: Staatsoper Hannover

The opera house was built in 1845-52 based on a plan drawn by Laves. Originally it served as the royal theatre, as the king considered the theatre in the Leineschloß too small. The new opera house is a classical style building with two large wings and a balcony with statues of famous poets and composers. The balcony used to be open so that visitors could drive straight to the entrance in their carriages. Nowadays they can use the stairs to the underground car park. Hannover's opera house was badly damaged in the Second World War and rebuilt in 1948. In 1985 the acoustics were improved and between 1996 and 1998 the stage equipment was restored.

Theater - Schauspielhaus

Hannover’s State Opera House and Playhouse (Schauspielhaus) occupy leading positions in international league tables. Their repertoires include both new interpretations of established classics and the world premieres of new works.

 

Museums and Galleries

Spectacular projects, precious collections and pioneering exhibits all confirm Hannover Region’s reputation as a centre of art.

Exhibitions unlimited

kestnergesellschaft © kestnergesellschaft

There are excellent museums devoted to archaeology, natural history and ethnology, including vivid portrayals of technical history and everyday life in centuries gone by. For art lovers, the journey becomes its own reward in Hannover: with the sculptures along Brühlstrasse, the opulent Nanas by Niki de Saint Phalle on the bank of the River Leine and the futuristic busstopss, you encounter art face to face wherever you go.

Down the mine or up in the air

Presenting facts and figures in an entertaining way is the keynote of the museums in Hannover Region: in the “Klosterstollen”, a preserved coal mine in Barsinghausen, visitors can don helmet and overalls and set out on the trail of the “black gold”. The Peat Museum in Landestrost Palace, Neustadt am Rübenberge, conveys a feeling of what life was like for the people of the peat bogs centuries ago. Laatzen Museum of Aviation is the museum of choice for those who are interested in the history of technology, and the new “World of Aviation” at Hannover Airport is also sure to inspire flights of fancy. Finally, the Tramway Museum in Sehnde-Wehmingen offers a fascinating display of historical railway engineering.

 

For further information about sightseeing in Hannover click here