The historic and charming German town of Hamelin
The German city
Have you ever heard of “The Pied Piper of Hamelin”? This folk tale is centuries old and the historic town of Hamelin or Hameln is certainly known for it. But did you also know that this German city has much more to offer? We went there on a day trip and were pleasantly surprised by the charm of Hamelin.
This city is an hour’s drive from Hanover and is therefore perfect to combine together. Hamelin is easily accessible by car. Ample parking is provided around the center and on Sundays it is absolutely free! In Hamelin, everything is accessible on foot so you don’t need the car at all in the downtown area. More to the point, cars are not even allowed there. This gives the city extra charm.
Hamelin is not very large, but requesting a guide at the tourist point is definitely recommended. Not only does the guide have much more to say about the city than you will ever find out on your own, but he/she also knows the ideal places to take pictures, eat, and even store! It is best to book a guide in advance (by phone). Our lovely guide was named Katherine and she really knew àll about her city. A fantastic meeting! But if you want the real experience of the city of Hamelin, choose the “squealer” as your guide. This guide fully plays the role of the rat catcher, with costume and flute. An unforgettable experience!
Charming City of Hamelin
If one word can be pasted on this city, it is definitely charm. It is a city of charm like none we have seen before. At times, the downtown reminded us a bit of Belgian Bruges (but smaller and yet different). The center has narrow alleys where you can wander quietly. All over Hamelin you can find impressive architecture because the buildings are so old.
If you are going to Hamelin for one day, choose Sunday. Indeed, every Sunday at noon, a small play telling the story of the Pied Piper of this city can be seen for free. This is played by excellent performers who diligently reenact the folk tale from 1284. By seeing this play, you will experience the legend of the time all over again as if you were there.
The Rattenfanger Museum is also worth a visit. It makes you feel like you’re back in time and it’s not expensive at all! Currently, you can even see live (tame) rats there. This is very nice to visit with children. Furthermore, it will give you more info about the whole event of 1284. And for those interested, you can even host (children’s) parties there and have a free tea or coffee.
You can eat and drink at various places in Hamelin. We recommend eating at Rattenfängerhaus. This is one of the oldest and most famous buildings in Hamelin. Drinking can be done on one of the many terraces of the city. And be sure to look for the pancake house where you can feast on all kinds of goodies!
True cycling enthusiasts are also sure to find their way here. Take a relaxing ride along the waterfront and have something delicious to eat or drink along the way.
Hamelin is great for a quiet weekend getaway. You can enjoy cycling or walking along the waterfront, exploring the nearby forest and eating out in a charming downtown area. In addition, the city also has a shopping mall and a few unique souvenir stores. What more do you wish for?