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Leipzig - City

Monday demos and fizzy drink

A major centre for trade going back hundreds of years, with its trade fair dating from 1190, Leipzig suffered badly through the collapse of the local heavy industry after the fall of the Wall, which was in part triggered by Monday evening demonstrations starting from the city's St Nicholas Church (see below). Since those times, however, it has become a booming city in the last 20 years and is now one of the fastest-growing in Germany. 

Home to the only Euro 2024 stadium in the old East Germany (Berlin's Olympic Stadium is/was in the West), it has a troubled footballing history. While fans of a certain age will remember Lokomotiv Leipzig and those with an interest in GDR football will have heard of Chemie or Sachsen Leipzig, for many the only club linked to this city that they've heard of will be RasenBallsport Leipzig, a club and club name created solely for marketing purposes by an Austrian fizzy drink company that took over, renamed and rebranded nearby village club SSV Markranstadt and paid only lip service to German football's rules on fan participation. As you'll gather, being a member of 100% member-owned Union Berlin, I am no fan of the 'Konstrukt'.

Below are a few tips on places to eat and drink, what to see and do and where to stay. You'll find more tips on Leipzig's official tourist website. And if you have any tips of your own and would like to share them, I'd be happy to add them here. Please just e-mail me at

To keep this page uncluttered, I've not included any photos. Instead, I've put together a selection in this Leipzig City and Stadium Gallery.

You'll also find plenty of photos and a few ideas for things to do over at GetYourGuide.

For hard copy guide books, see my Books page.

Getting to Leipzig

If you're flying into the city from the UK, see my UK Airports page for departure airport information and my Leipzig/Halle Airport page for details of your arrival airport. If you're travelling to the Euros by rail, an Interrail pass will cover all your train journeys, while for individual trips within Germany see this page for Deutsche Bahn times and fares. And if your'e coming by coach, then FlixBus have you covered.


Auerbach‘s Keller 
The second-oldest restaurant in Leipzig and famous for its association with Goethe, Germany's equivalent of Shakespeare. One of the scenes of Goethe's best-known work Faust is set in this vaulted, basement-level restaurant. I ate there quite some years ago and remember it as serving good wine and filling German food.

Bayerischer Bahnhof
I and two fellow Union Berlin fans (a Scot and an American) ate here prior to Union's cup semi-final in the city a couple of years back. They offer beer brewed on site and hearty German fare. It's located a little way from the city centre, but is still within walking distance of the main station and city centre hotels.

I have to admit that I'm a sucker for German town-hall cellar restaurants! I love the vaulted ceilings, the oak furniture and the hearty fare. Not to mention the odd glass of beer or fine wine. Like many German towns, Leipzig too has a traditional restaurant in the basement (Keller) of its town hall (Rathaus), thus the name Ratskeller. As the website linked to above is all in German, here's the Ratskeller Leipzig page on Tripadvisor.


Dating back to the 12th century and incorporating multiple architectural styles, St Nicholas Church, the Nikolairkirche, was once the venue for premieres of works by Johann Sebastian Bach and became famouse worldwide in 1989 for the peaceful demonstrations against the East German system that began here every Monday evening and grew to such a size that they generated increasing pressure for system change, ultimately culminating in November of that year in the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Monument to the Battle of the Nations (Völkerschlachtdenkmal) 
A huge monument commemorating the defeat of Napoleon in the 'Battle of the Nations' at Leipzig in 1813. Completed a hundred years later, it is 91 metres tall with an observation platform affording great views of the surrounding area. 

The monument is right on the edge of town (5km from the main station). One way of getting there is by driving an iconic GDR Trabant car as part of a guided convoy.

Stasi HQ 
A memorial museum in the former Stasi HQ run by the Citizens Committee of Leipzig, which came into being during the period of the 1989 Monday demonstrations. Many of the rooms and offices of the erstwhile Stasi officers have been preserved much as they were when the Wall came and the Stasi's reason for existing vanished.

There are more ideas on things to do here and elsewhere in Germany on my '100 things to do' page.



Ibis Budget Leipzig City
Basic but clean, and a great location. Just 200 yards from the main station. Stayed here for a Union game a couple of years ago and walked both to and from the ground (about 20 minutes each way).

B&B Hotel Leipzig City
Also centrally located, 500 metres from the main station and thus also within walking distance of the stadium. Also close to all the main city centre sights.

Hostel Multitude
If you're looking for an inexpensive bed for the night just a 15-minute walk from the stadium, then this place is worth checking out. Double, triple and quadruple rooms available, plus dormintories sleeping up to 10. A bar, terrace and garden.

For other hotels on and around the respective matchdays, plus out of town alternatives, see the Dates page.


KNAUS Campingpark Leipzig-Auensee
25 mins by public transport (bus and S-Bahn) to Leipzig Hbf

For other campsites for other venues, see my Camping page.

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