DREAMSCAPES SPRING/SUMMER 2024
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LEIPZIG, CITY OF MUSIC AND CULTURE
 
(2024 - Spring/Summer Issue)

Writer: CLAUDIA LAROYE



Few places can claim as rich a musical heritage as Leipzig. Classical luminaries like Johann Sebastian Bach, Richard Wagner and Felix Mendelssohn are inextricably linked to the city, which celebrates its favourite musical sons during annual summer festivals.

In less than 1.5 hours by train from busy Berlin in the state of Saxony, you can be in a biergarten-brimming platz, a converted Baroque building of art, and to stretch those gams, cycle along one of its many rivers, canals and surrounding lakes.

From coffee culture to choral concerts and picturesque park corners, explore the liveliness of Leipzig in summer. Here is our full-day Leipzig trip itinerary.

Morning

Coffee culture has a long history in Leipzig. You’ll find the perfect cup of freshly brewed coffee at Café Kandler in the city centre. When in Leipzig, coffee should always be accompanied by something sweet. Order Kandler’s very own creation, the Bachtaler cake, an irresistible combination of chocolate ganache, butter cream and hazelnut pastry. Or try the decadent jam and marzipan-filled Leipziger Lerche.

Stroll through a network of historical arcades and courtyard pathways along Petersstrasse and Grimmaische Strasse in Leipzig’s old town centre. In these shopping promenades, rich in Old World elegance or playfully decorated with murals by local artists, you’ll find specialty shops, restaurants and bookstores. Don’t forget to rub the bronze statue of Faust at the entrance to the almost 500-year-old Auerbachskeller for good luck.

Afternoon

For lunch, pair a plate of Leipziger Allerlei, a vegetable dish that includes locally farmed carrots, kohlrabi, asparagus and cauliflower, as well as morels and bread dumplings, with a glass of Gose, a local wheat beer specialty.

Music sets the tone in Leipzig, which over the centuries has been home to more than 500 composers, including Bach, Mendelssohn, the Schumann couple and Wagner. Visit the namesake museums and dive into the history of the women and men behind their music. Take a tour of St. Thomas Church where Bach was the 18th-century choirmaster, or catch a performance by the renowned Gewandhausorchester at the Gewandhaus Concert Hall.

Board a tram towards west Leipzig to visit the Spinnerei art centre, formerly the largest cotton mill in continental Europe, in the trendy Plagwitz district. The red-bricked 10-hectare factory complex, which was decommissioned in 1992, is bustling with galleries, local crafts, performance spaces and cafés. You can even rent an artist’s apartment at hotel Meisterzimmer to soak in the creative atmosphere.

Take a city break and explore Leipzig on its waterways. Rent a canoe or kayak and view the city from an unusual angle along a 200-kilometre network of canals and waterways linked to the 20 surrounding lakes. If you want to enjoy the waterside without spending energy, then take a seat on a guided electric motorboat tour.

Night

Admire the Renaissance-style Old Town Hall and shopping arcade overlooking the Marktplatz. Locals and visitors enjoy alfresco meals at shared tables, as well as concerts and events in summer.

On the platform of the Panorama Tower, the tallest building in Leipzig, enjoy an unrestricted view high above city lights. Toast the view with a Saxonian white wine or try an ice-cold glass of Leipziger Allasch, a sweet caraway-infused liqueur.

Did You Know?

The Thomanerchor (St. Thomas Boys Choir), which was founded over 800 years ago, is Leipzig’s oldest cultural institution. Its most famous choirmaster was Johann Sebastian Bach.

Festival Season

Leipzig Bachfest: “CHORal TOTAL” (June 7–16, 2024)

Leipzig Bachfest celebrates its musical hometown hero every year in June. At this year’s festival, Bach choirs from around the world will gather at the original places where their idol worked to perform the entire “annual cycle of choral cantatas”—exactly 300 years after the first performance. bachfestleipzig.de/en/bachfest

Oper Leipzig: International Ballet Festival (June 21–29, 2024)

Under the motto “Leipzig dances!” the Leipzig Ballet celebrates the sinuous artform of ballet in all its facets with performances from international dance companies. oper-leipzig.de/en/leipzig-tanzt

Mendelssohn Festival (October 28–November 4, 2024)

The annual Mendelssohn Festival celebrates the composer and his music with a prestigious series of fall concerts at the Mendelssohn House and the Gewandhaus Concert Hall. leipzig.travel/cityofmusic

Travel Planner

Fly into Frankfurt or Düsseldorf to connect to Leipzig on Lufthansa. Deutsche Bahn operates frequent high-speed non-stop train service from Berlin that takes about 75 minutes. For more travel information about Leipzig, visit leipzig.travel/en

 
 
 
 
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