6 Magical Day Trips from Nuremberg by Train

Do you want to know which are the best day trips from Nuremberg by train?

Then you’ve come to the right place. I used Nuremberg as a base to explore Upper Bavaria and can share the first-hand knowledge you need to plan your perfect day trip.

In my view, the quintessentially German towns of Bamberg and Rothenburg ob der Tauber are the easiest and most rewarding places to visit near Nuremberg. I will focus on these but I’ve also included a further four cities near Nuremberg that are easy day trips by train.

Ready to find out more? Discover how to take these fabulous days out from Nuremberg by train, including what to see when you arrive.  

sign for nürnberg on platform of the train station

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Getting Away from Nuremberg

facade of nuremberg train station the starting point of day trips from nuremberg by train
Nuremberg’s Hauptbahnhof

I love travelling by rail, and taking day trips by train from Nuremberg couldn’t be easier. Its imposing Hauptbahnhof (main train station) is opposite the Königstor gate, one of the main entrances to Nürnberg Old Town.

You can check train times here. I highly recommend downloading the DB app for planning on the go,

Before you buy a point-to-point ticket, check if your journey will be cheaper with a Regional Day Ticket for Bavaria, just one of Germany’s bargain day tickets.

READ THIS NEXT: One Day in Nuremberg Old Town, Germany: Itinerary & Self-Guided Walking Tour

Nuremberg to Bamberg Day Trip by Train

Why visit Bamberg?

Visit beautiful Bamberg for its UNESCO-listed Old Town, protected by Europe’s largest intact city wall, and to sip the smokiest beers on the planet. Built over seven hills, Bamberg is known as “Franconian Rome.”

Furthermore, as Bamberg’s must-see sights are very walkable, you can hit the highlights in a day.

READ THIS NEXT: Top 10 Reasons to Visit Bamberg, Germany

5 best things to see in Bamberg

1. THE OLD TOWN

a group of medieval buildings in old town bamberg reflected in river

Unlike many of its neighbours, including Nuremberg, Bamberg escaped the ravages of the Second World War I, leaving its old town relatively unscathed. This time capsule is one of Europe’s best-preserved medieval towns and one that formed the blueprint for other towns to follow.

2. OLD TOWN HALL (ALTES RATHAUS)

medieval building on an island with a bridge on either sdie

Occupying an island in the middle of the Regnitz River is the Altes Rathaus, Bamberg’s most famous landmark. The façade of Bamberg Old Town Hall is adorned with vibrant trompe d’oeil frescoes painted by Johann Anwander (1715 – 1770).

3. BAMBERG CATHEDRAL

tomb carving showing king on death bed and grieving queen

Step inside the Romanesque Bamberger Dom St. Peter und St. Georg to take a look at the masterpiece of a marble tomb of Henry II, his wife, Cunegundand. Keeping it company is the famous Bamberg Horseman (Der Bamberger Reiter), an equestrian statue created in the early 1200s. 

4. THE ROSE GARDEN

stone sculpture in bamberg rose garden with skyline of old town in background

Laid out in 1733, the Neue Residenz Rose Garden is my favourite place in Bamberg. It’s free to enter and offers wonderful views over Bamberg and towards Michelsburg Abbey.

5. LITTLE VENICE

row of half timbered medieval houses by side of river

Klein Venedig is a ridiculously photogenic former fishermen’s district that features a row of wonky half-timbered houses hugging the river’s edge.

Don’t leave town without trying Rauchbier, Bamberg’s famous smoky beer. Schlenkera’s Märzen is worth the price of your train ticket from Nuremberg.

Getting from Nuremberg to Bamberg by train

Thanks to its proximity and a direct rail connection, Bamberg is the easiest day trip from Nuremberg by train. The journey time is from 30 minutes and you can expect at least one train an hour.  

Getting from Bamberg Train Station to the Old Town

Bamberg railway station is a 20-minute walk to Grüner Markt in the heart of the Old Town. Simply follow the signs for Innenstadt from the station.

Nuremberg to Rothenburg Day Trip by Train

Why visit Rothenburg?

Rothenburg ob der Tauber is a 14th Century town alive and kicking in the 21st Century.

This is one of Germany’s best preserved medieval towns and a hugely popular destination on the Romantic Road that winds itself through the towns and villages of Bavaria’s medieval heartland. It has wonky half-timbered houses, cobbled streets and an intact town wall with stone towers.

As Rothenburg’s main sights are no more than a 15-minute walk from each other or from the train station, it’s a breeze to explore the city in a day.

READ THIS NEXT: One Day in Rothenburg ob der Tauber: 10 Magical Things to Do

5 best things to see in Rothenburg

1. MARKTPLATZ

facades of medieval half timbered buildings in rothenburg ob der tauber germany

Soak up the medieval splendour of Rothenburg’s beating heart since the year 1300. It is home to not one, but two town halls – the Gothic Old Town Hall and Renaissance New Town Hall – and the ornate St. George’s Fountain.

If you have a head for heights, scale the Old Town Hall’s tower for a bird’s-eye view of the town.

2. ST JAMES’S CHURCH

modern sculpture of st james

Spend a few euro to step inside the beautiful St James’s Church (St. Jakob’s Church). This rest stop on the Camino de Santiago achieved fame as the location of a drop of Christ’s blood.

The sacred phial is housed within the Altar of the Holy Blood, which has a sublime wooden altarpiece carved by Tilman Reimenschnieder between 1499 and 1504.

St. James’s High Altar features painted panels by Friedrich Herlin and carved wooden statues. To the left of the High Altar is the stone Tabernacle of the Holy Eucharist, depicting Jesus overcoming death by standing on a skull.

3. CASTLE GARDEN

distant view of town of rothenburg in germany

From the Castle Garden, there are unbeatable views of Rothenburg’s medieval skyline and the Tauber Valley. All that remains of the former castle is the Blasius Chapel, in front of which is a memorial to local Jews slaughtered in 1298.

4. PLÖLEIN

a half-timbered house flanked by 2 tpwers

Plölein is Rothenburg’s most famous landmark and one of Germany’s most photographed streets. Does it look familiar to you?

That might be because you recognise it from Pinocchio, the 1940 Disney animation that was inspired by Rothenburg.

5. KÄTHE WOHLFAHRT

giant xmas tree in a festive shop

Do you want to visit a place where it is Christmas 365 days a year?

Jingle all the way down to Rothenburg’s famous Käthe Wohlfahrt. Founded in 1964, this is the largest and most famous vendor of traditional German Christmas products.

Try a Schneeball or Schneeballen (snowball in English) when you are in town. This is Rothenburg’s tasty pastry, a sweet cloud of heaven made from layers of shortcrust pastry, dusted with sugar. It is sold in bakeries and cafes.

Getting from Nuremberg to Rothenburg by train

There is no direct train from Nuremberg to Rothenburg.

You will need to take a train to Ansbach and a second train to Steinbach. From here, a branch line brings you to Rothenburg.

But don’t let these changes of train put you off. Although I had initial reservations, it turned out to be very easy. The journey time is just a shade over one hour and connecting trains run every two hours.

Germany has several towns called Rothenburg. Make sure that you don’t arrive in a lesser Rothenburg by selecting “Rothenburg ob der Tauber” when planning your train journey.

Getting from Rothenburg train station to the old town

Marktplatz is an easy 10-minute walk from Rothenburg’s railway station. Turn left out of the railway station and follow the signs for Aldstadt. This will bring you to Röder gate, one of the entrances to the old town.  

Other Easy Day Trips from Nuremberg by Train

red and white train in germany

If you have more time to spare or fancy visiting a different destination, here are a few further options for places to visit near Nuremberg. All of these destinations are within an hour or so rail journey from Nuremberg.

Würzburg

The main reason to visit Würzburg is for the UNESCO-listed Würzburg Residence, one of Europe’s finest palaces.

  • Fastest journey time: 50 minutes
  • Direct train
  • Three trains per hour  

Regensburg

Regensburg is one of the finest medieval cities with a rich history stretching back over 2,000 years. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.

  • Fastest journey time: 1 hour
  • Direct train operates
  • Three trains per hour but not all direct services. The faster direct service runs hourly  

Munich

With more than 80 museums, Munich is Bavaria’s cultural capital and is also home to the world’s largest beer garden.

  • Fastest journey time: 1 hour
  • Direct train operates
  • Up to seven trains per hour but not all of these are direct services.

Coburg

Pretty Coburg is famous as the seat of the Saxe-Coburg dynasty, whose most well-known member was Prince Albert who became Queen Victoria’s husband.

  • Fastest journey time: 50 minutes
  • Direct train
  • Between one and three trains per hour

Where to Stay in Nuremberg

If you are planning to use Nuremberg as a base to visit other towns by train, make sure that you are not staying too far from the railway station.

Splurge – Hotel Drei Raben

The Drei Raben is one of my favourite hotels ever.

This boutique hotel is stylish and centrally located on Königstrasse, around five minutes from the Hauptbahnhof. The complimentary evening wine tasting is a wonderful bonus, with Ralf and Markus on hand for chats and excellent local suggestions.  

>>> CLICK HERE TO CHECK RATES & BOOK

Here are some other places to stay that may suit other tastes and budgets:

Mid-range – Melter Hotel & Apartments

Close to the Drei Raben, but a little further from the train station, this 4-star property offers a choice of rooms and apartments. It’s worth looking at if you prefer self-catering accommodation.

>>> CLICK HERE TO CHECK RATES & BOOK

Mid-range – Art & Business Hotel

>>> CLICK HERE TO CHECK RATES & BOOK

This family-run hotel is located outside the old town walls but close to the Hauptbahnhof. It offers prized single rooms for solo travellers and reviews are good.

>>> None of these places take your fancy? Discover other great places to stay in Nuremberg here.

READ THIS NEXT: 10 Factors You Cannot Ignore When Choosing a Hotel 

bridget coleman the flashpacker 2

About Bridget

Bridget Coleman has been a passionate traveller for more than 30 years. She has visited 70+ countries, most as a solo traveller.

Articles on this site reflect her first-hand experiences.

To get in touch, email her at hello@theflashpacker.net or follow her on social media.

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