Then and now in Nuremberg, Germany – Grand European tour part XVI

Nuremberg is a beautiful city, but it also has its darker side due to its use for the Nazi rallies. And, of course, Nuremberg was the place where prominent Nazi leaders were tried for their crimes following the war.

Getting to the Nazi rally party grounds took me a while, simply because I struggled with the S-bahn for quite some time. I couldn’t figure out how to buy a ticket! In most cities the ticket machines are right on the platforms or you end up walking right past them, but I didn’t realize for the longest time that the S-bahn tickets were sold at the normal ticket machines.

Well, I figured it out eventually, then took a short trip to the grounds. I first went into the Documentation Center, which discussed Hitler and the Nazi party’s rise to power. All the signs in the exhibit were in German though the audio was in English; however, I would much rather read than listen since I read very fast. Still, the exhibit was very interesting and just confirmed that Hitler was a complete nutjob.

Afterwards I walked around some of the main buildings/areas of the Nazi rally party grounds. I first started at the Congress Hall, which is unfinished. The completed building was supposed to contain enough seats for 50,000 people and also have a roof. The building was supposed to be huge to show the power of the Nazi party for the whole world to see.

I next walked to the Great Road, which was going to be used as a parade road. However, as it was finished after the last party rally, it was never used as such. Today it is used as parking for events such as fairs.

After getting slightly lost, I made it to Zeppelin Field. The area looks different today because it has been neglected, and also because the giant swastika on top of the grandstand was blown up by the Allies as a symbolism of the fall of the Nazis. In addition, the interior suffers numerous problems because rain water can soak in. Still, it was interesting to walk on the grandstand, look over the field, and try to imagine what it was like during the Nazi era.

I next headed back to the section of the city where my hostel was located and wandered around some of the shops. I came across an H&M that had a massive sale, so I bought two shirts and a pair of shorts for about 17 Euros… aw yeah. I also met and chatted with a lovely Australian girl in my hostel room, so it was a pretty good day.

Original Zeppelinfeld photos courtesy of Tour Diary of a Madman.

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