OT Travel Itinerary: Your 5 Day Guide To Chemnitz

This city in the Free State of Saxony has it all: cultural performances, historical heritage, gorgeous castles, a lush and vibrant living landscape, and a sport-mad citizenry
The gorgeous Chemnitz Opera House (centre) and the St Petri Church (right) during sunset
The gorgeous Chemnitz Opera House (centre) and the St Petri Church (right) during sunsetRudy Balasko/Shutterstock.com

Once the richest city in Germany, Chemnitz is the third-largest city today in the German state of Saxony after Leipzig and Dresden. This German region was renowned for being at the forefront of technological development for over 200 years. Chemnitz was one of its central hubs. From its heyday as an industrial metropolis to a 2025 European Capital of Culture, Chemnitz is a city where history and modernity meet thanks to its innovative and inventive attitude.

Here’s your guide to spending five amazing days in this town.

Day 1


The Chemnitz Industrial Museum was built over 100 years ago
The Chemnitz Industrial Museum was built over 100 years agoindustriemuseum/Facebook

Start your first day in Chemnitz with a tour of its industrial heritage. The Chemnitz Industrial Museum was built over 100 years ago and has historical textile machines, a still functioning single-cylinder counter-pressure steam engine from 1896, and modern industrial robots.

Next, make you way to the Museum of Saxon Vehicles. The region’s motoring industry has a long and storied history. This museum is dedicated to preserving and explaining this rich heritage, concentrating on cars, motorbikes and bicycles. It has over 200 exhibits on permanent display.


The Karl Marx Monument is a landmark of Chemnitz
The Karl Marx Monument is a landmark of ChemnitzMarclSchauer/Shutterstock.com

Break for lunch. The 50s Ville is a retro American-style diner complete with red booths. The Nomad restaurant has healthy breakfast and lunch options, while the Maharadscha Palast has some of the best Indian food in the city.

Next, take a walk to the Karl Marx Monument, a landmark of the city. This 7m bronze head of the famous philosopher and political theorist stands over 13m high (if you add the base platform) and weighs approximately 40 tonnes. On the wall behind the monument, the phrase "Workers of the world, unite!" from his famous book “The Communist Manifesto” is inscribed in German, English, French and Russian.

Afterwards, check out the State Museum of Archaeology. It archives 300,000 years of human history from the time of the first hunter-gatherers up to the early industrial period. It has around 6,200 objects on display and also hosts special exhibitions from time to time.


The Saxon Railway Museum
The Saxon Railway MuseumCopyright: Ralph Kunz for chemnitz.travel/Website

Next, check out the Saxon Railway Museum. It is the largest functioning steam locomotive depot in Europe today and houses fifty locomotives from different epochs.

Catch a performance at the Chemnitz Opera House. From ballet to plays and classical music concerts, it is a cultural powerhouse of the arts scene in the city. Don’t miss this.

Day 2


An Art Nouveau building in the Kaßberg district
An Art Nouveau building in the Kaßberg districtCopyright: Ernesto Uhlmann for chemnitz.travel/Website

What better way to start off your second day than with an Art Nouveau tour of the city? Kaßberg is one of the largest contiguous Art Nouveau and Wilhelminian-style districts in Europe. Decorative façades with great attention to detail characterise entire streets. The district is close to the city centre and the tour includes stops at the Villa Richard Hartmann, the Karl Schmidt Rottluf Gymnasium, the Oberpostdirektion, and the Marianne Brandt Haus, to name a few.


A puppet performance at the Spinnbau
A puppet performance at the SpinnbauDieTheaterChemnitz/Facebook

The performing arts theatre of Spinnbau stages popular classics and plays that regale audiences. Whether you’re in the mood for an Arthur Miller or Anton Chekhov adaptation, a musical production, or a spot of puppet theatre—with fairy tale classics by the Brothers Grimm or Hans Christian Anderson to more contemporary matters like migration and bullying—you will find something here to delight you.

Now’s the time to check out Museum Gunzenhauser, part of the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz group of museums and institutions which collectively house one of the largest communal art collections in the country. This museum has over 380 paintings by German artist Otto Dix. It also holds one of the largest collections of Expressionist painter Alexej von Jawlensky's works, as well as those by Willi Baumeister, Gabriele Münter, Conrad Felixmüller and Serge Poliakoff.


The Sachsen-Allee is an enclosed shopping mall
The Sachsen-Allee is an enclosed shopping mall sachsenallee/Facebook

You can’t not visit the Sachsen-Allee. This enclosed shopping mall has over 80 shops situated amid tree-lined corridors and a glass roof, giving it an outdoor ambience. It offers a diverse range of products like clothing, electronics and groceries. Its food court has a variety of options to choose from.

Day 3


The picturesque Wasserschloss Klaffenbach runs parallel to the Würschnitz river
The picturesque Wasserschloss Klaffenbach runs parallel to the Würschnitz riverSina Ettmer Photography/Shutterstock.com

Today should be spent visiting and exploring the charming castles of Chemnitz.

The picturesque Wasserschloss Klaffenbach was built in the 16th century and runs parallel to the Würschnitz river. The area is home to a hotel, restaurant, and arts and crafts studio in the midst of a landscape park with green meadows, a golf course and walkways. There are plenty of cultural exhibitions at any given time in the castle, along with open air events and seasonal markets.

The Schloss Augustusburg is considered one of the most beautiful Renaissance castles of central Europe
The Schloss Augustusburg is considered one of the most beautiful Renaissance castles of central Europe Animaflora PicsStock/Shutterstock.com

The Schloss Augustusburg was a hunting and pleasure castle built in 1572. This gingerbread-like building is considered one of the most beautiful Renaissance castles of central Europe today. Now, it has a motorcycle museum (one of Europe’s most extensive two-wheeler collection with 175 exhibits); a valuable painting from the 16th century by Lucas Cranach the Younger; a hall with unique wall paintings from the same period; and a carriage museum with stately carriages on display.

The Burg Scharfenstein was built around 1250 during the colonisation of the Ore Mountains after silver ores were discovered there. The castle has been continuously inhabited and used for more than 750 years. Its Christmas and Toy Museum has candle arches and Christmas pyramids from the the Ore Mountains, while another on-site museum documents the exploits of folk hero Karl Stülpner, the “Robin Hood of the Erzgebirge.”

Make sure to get plenty of rest during the day to eat, drink and people watch.

Day 4


Konkordiapark Copyright: Ernesto Uhlmann for chemnitz.travel/Website

Chemnitz prides itself on being a sporty city so today should be devoted to getting active. Head to Konkordiapark after a hearty breakfast. Fans of skateboarding and BMX will have a thrill jumping and descending on its slopes. There’s also a basketball and football pitch for interested folks.

Next, head to the rock climbing gym. The Chemnitz Climbing Centre is right beside Konkordiapark.


Inside the Chemnitz Botanical Gardens
Inside the Chemnitz Botanical GardensCopyright: W Berthold for chemnitz.de/Website

You must be feeling hungry now. Once you’ve eaten lunch, walk out any lingering sluggishness with a trip to the city’s botanical gardens. The 12-hectare gardens have guided tours of its arboretum, tropical greenhouse and stork pond.

Next, time to swim. The Stadtbad Chemnitz is the local city pool and has pretty interiors. You can also visit the Schwimmhalle Gablenz.


The indoor and outdoor ice skating arenas of Chemnitz
The indoor and outdoor ice skating arenas of ChemnitzEissportzentrumChemnitz/Facebook

Swimming will leave you famished so after a bite to eat, your final stop of the day should be the Jutta Müller Eissportzentrum. This is an open-air ice rink with an adjacent indoor arena with seating. It's the home venue for the Wild Boys ice hockey team.

You can always swap out ice skating or swimming with a hike in a nearby forest. The Crimmitschauer Wald is a 6km route which offers a moderate challenge and takes around 90 minutes to complete. It’s great for running and walking, and it's unlikely you'll encounter many other people while exploring its environs.

Day 5


Overlooking Chemnitz from its outskirts
Overlooking Chemnitz from its outskirtsAnimaflora PicsStock/Shutterstock.com

The final morning dawns. Cycling is in Germany’s blood and Chemnitz is no different. Start your morning with a gentle cycle ride around the city streets and outskirts. Stop to eat at bakeries and cafés which catch your eye.


The grounds of Lichtenwalde Castle look straight out of a fairy tale
The grounds of Lichtenwalde Castle look straight out of a fairy taleAnatolii Lyzun/Shutterstock.com

Saving the best for last, visit the park and castle of Lichtenwalde. This Baroque castle is situated among landscaped grounds that are perfect for a stroll. The views from here are stunning to say the least. The on-site museum has a collection of Asian and African artefacts for visitors to trawl through. There’s also a quaint teahouse to pop into.


The outdoor view from the Miramar tavern
The outdoor view from the Miramar tavernmiramar.chemnitz/Facebook

Your final evening should be dedicated to sampling classic German fare. Eat and drink at the Miramar, a cosy tavern with a leafy beer garden and lovely city views. Or, step into Diebels Fasskeller. It has a terrace from where you can gaze over Chemnitz while eating schnitzel and other traditional German dishes.

Where To Stay

Stay at the Schlosshotel Klaffenbach or c/o 56 Hotel for a luxury experience. Those on a budget should consider the ACHAT Hotel and the Congress Hotel. The Pension Hoefti and the DJH Youth Hostel Chemnitz One is suitable for backpackers.

Getting There

Chemnitz is close to Dresden Airport (DRS), 81km away, and the railway station of Leipzig Hauptbahnhof (85km). You can reach the city easily by road from Dresden, Leipzig, Weimar, Erfurt, Berlin, Nuremburg and Munich within two to four hours.

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