We arrived in Leipzig and my spirits were high! I was so happy to finally see this city. But somehow I still could quite grasp the fact that the time had arrived and I was finally here. We walked through this giant train station just gawking at the architecture. Outside we tried to find a way to our hotel, figuring out which trains to use and which not. Btw. I learned from a local that you should never call these trains Tram or Trambahn as you would in other parts of Germany, you may call them Bimmelbahn or Straßenbahn. Just so you know how to not out yourself as a tourist the minute you arrive ;-P
Anyways, we found an easy way into town and as I looked out the window I was very happy to be there, but I also got the impression that this city wasn’t so small as I thought if would be.
At our hotel we were kind of astonished at the luxury of the building – the hotel being situated at the top floor, so we could overlook the city. It was magnificent!
At the hotel we only lay down for about 10 minutes on the beds, then got ready and headed straight downtown.
On out way to the Augustusplatz, we passed the oldest cemetary of Leipzig, the Alter Johannisfriedhof where Friedrich Arnold Brockhaus (1772–1823), a publisher, and Franz Dominic Grassi (1801–1880), a merchant and patron, are buried. Both are very known men, still now!
We also walked by an art museum, called Grassi (surprise!), and a beautiful building in the Bauhaus style.
The Bauhaus Style is the description of an architectural style that was formed in the 1920s in Weimar at the school of art Bauhaus founded by Walter Gropius. The artists had a common goal which was founding a new style of architecture, that combined art and craftmanship into one. This building is almost exactly like one of the facades of Gropius Bauhaus school – the dormitory for the students to be exact.
At the Augustusplatz we first took time to gawk at the building of the University, which is absolutely fancy and gigantic! The blue glass and the composition of the different buildings into one giant one is really fascinating.
The Opera is also quite impressive, especially because there was something about to start inside and there were still some people dressed up standing outside. You could also see inside, where the chandeliers and gold embellishments were smartly displayed and lit.
We spent also a tiny bit of time, checking out the giant MDR building. But decided to really head into town. So we did. We started by walking down the biggest street downtown we found. First there were only shops of giant chains left and right, but the buildings they were in were quite beautiful! And as we progressed down the street, the buildings started getting bigger and more pompous until we finally stood at the grand old city hall. Here we stopped for some selfies – gotta keep the family updated, am I right;-)?
From here we decided that this was enough sightseeing for the day, after that 6 hour train ride, plus it was pretty dark, late and we were hungry. So we went off the tourist walks and into some small, narrow street where so many bars and restaurants were just all cramped next to each other and each one was almost spilling over, so many people were there. I had the impression that the whole of Leipzig was in this tiny street! Sitting partly outside, partly inside, or still choosing where to go.
A little bit flashed by all the impressions of the completely different bars next to each other with significantly different people sitting in each, (very fascinating to observe btw.) we found a nice restaurant to eat, which wasn’t too full and which had local food!
We shared a yummy salad with some chicken and a soup. Plus a good rosé…I mean when you’re eating out, you gotta do it right;-)
For the exact details to where we stayed and ate click here!
We relaxed there for a bit and took in the atmosphere, which was a mixture between relaxation, exuberance, tranquillity and exhilaration. The lighting was rather dim, changing down the street to rather club like lighting. At our end, it was rather idyllic. There was a Leipziger Bar opposite us, as well as a very Italian place right next to it. The waiter was so Italian we really had to grin. He had dark curly hair, as well as a dark curly beard. When he talked he gestured so widely as only Italians do (I say this with a lot of love) and the way he carried himself – so sure, confident, yet also somehow playful and with a lot of hearty character. His smile was also very dashing and some ladies over at the bar found him quite attractive, which he seemed to know quite well.
Other than the Italian waiter and his ladies at the bar, there were relaxed conversations around us, as well as stiff sitting couples opposite each other, busy people walking past searching for a place to eat, old couples having an intimate conversation, occasionally dressed up gangs of young people laughing their way down the street going partying and travel groups finding enough space for them all to sit down.
It was quite lively.
After we enjoyed this for some while, the sleepiness started to kick in on my side, so we decided to head for home.
Walking down the street again where we came, we saw a guy playing with a funny shaped puppet, letting her dance to the music, her oddly shaped breasts bobbing up and down to the beat. It was all dark, only the shop windows behind him illuminated him at his task. Opposite this old man was a very young man fascinated by the skills of the puppet player, probably somewhere in his twenties and probably somewhere after his fifth beer. His mood was quite cheerful and funny.
As we came to a spontaneous halt to just look at the puppet player he immediately started talking to us and suggesting that we sit for a while and watch, as it was “sooo fascinating.” 😉
To be honest if probably would’ve been quite amusing to stay and watch the two men, but I had literally been yawning for an hour already and was pleased by the thought of myself lying in bed sometime soon, fast asleep, that I politely rejected. This was for the better at the moment, as 15min later I practically fell into bed, completely exhausted, but happy!
Looking back, I wonder whether it would have been worth it to stay and make acquaintance with the two men, who really looked like a weird lot of fun. In a good way. Or rather in an interesting way. Well, I guess we’ll never know.
That concludes the first night in Leipzig, for the full guide to the city, exact locations with information to each, click here, for a part of the next day, click here! And with that, until next time, when I come to my actual birthday in Leipzig. Stay tuned!