Socially coined as the "Gateway to Europe", Frankfurt has recently risen to become quite the tourist destination in Germany. A bustling centre along the stretch of the Main River – which has influenced the formal name of Frankfurt am Main – this city welcomes visitors with its various attractions and stellar food scene. In the summer, travelers can enjoy the numerous beer gardens scattered across the city, whereas the annual Christmas market is hosted during the winter in the post-World War II reconstruction of Altstadt (Old Town). While this beautiful city can't be fully appreciated in one weekend, listed below are suggestions on how to spend an ideal 48 hours in Frankfurt, Germany:
Experience Their Ebbelwoi Cider at Kanonesteppel
While most German cities are dedicated to their love of beer, Frankfurt is also home to yet another customary drink – Ebbelwoi cider. Also known as Apfelwein, which translates to "apple wine" in English, this citrus cider is mainly prepared by cooking apples and has an alcohol content of 5.5%. With the option to order it in bars or on moving vehicles – yes, moving vehicles, but we'll get to that – there is an abundance of venues that serve Apfelwein, though perhaps the most qualified venue is Kanonesteppel. Located within the Sachsenhausen quarter, this small tavern is the ultimate location to drink an Ebbelwoi cider while also marvelling at the wood-panelled decor. An outdoor patio is also available, as is a good selection of traditional pub food. Other recommended Apfelwein bars include Adolf Wagner, Apfelwein Solzer, and the Hof Seppche.
Visit the Dialogue Museum
The Dialogue Museum is no ordinary experience. The exhibition, Dialogue in the Dark, is inspired by the common concept of museums – we go to see artifacts. But what about those who are visually impaired? Unusual but impactful, this Frankfurt attraction is a social enterprise dedicated to the disabled. Led by the blind employees of the Dark Team, guests are guided on a one-hour tour through rooms of complete darkness. Inside they will experience how it feels to be blind or visually impaired as even the guidebooks are challenging to understand. The exhibition inspires topics such as social discrimination and struggles of the impaired. Though the tour is only a mere 60 minutes, the impact of it is life lasting.
Take the Ebbelwei Express Throughout the City
An old-fashioned tour tram that circles the city of Frankfurt, the Ebbelwei Express is an hour-long ride filled with entertainment. Painted with colourful and charming designs, the tram passes by attractions such as the historic Römerberg, the city zoo, and the Willy-Brandt-Platz in the banking district. While this all may seem like an ordinary tour train at first, it's the Ebbelwoi cider that introduces the real fun. Included in each ticket is a bottle of "apple wine" and a handful of pretzels that can be enjoyed on your journey throughout the city. On Saturdays and Sundays, you may board the Ebbelwei Express at any one of its regular stops. Tickets are $9.30 USD for adults and $4.00 USD for children fourteen and under.
Eat Turkish Cuisine on The Dönerboot
If you notice a group of people gathering near a small boat along the Main River, then you’ve arrived at the Dönerboot. Available on water and on land, the Dönerboot is a floating restaurant that serves delicate and perfectly grilled Turkish cuisine. Offering everything from a variety of fresh fish to homemade lemonade, these authentic meals are created by Ramiz Meral, a man who was influenced by Turkish fishing boats. Inspired, he then brought the idea to Europe, where his vessel is perhaps the only doner boat on the banks of the Main. Since then, this small eatery has had quite a bit of success and has even introduced catering options. The Dönerboot is open every day between the months of April and October, though, it is weather depending.
Surrounded by concrete skyscrapers and large bodies of water, this city is becoming quite a valuable tourist destination within Germany. It is a city of great diversity, where people can explore the country’s history by visiting Römerberg or have the chance to discover modern architecture at the Main Tower. Home to the European Central Bank, this financial hub is also the birthplace of writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, who's former home now stands as a museum in the city's Innenstadt district. While it is always populated with international business workers who travel to the city for work, Frankfurt is beginning to attract more people who simply want to explore their culture. Whether this is done by drinking their apple wine on the Ebbelwei Express or by visiting the Emperor’s Cathedral, Frankfurt is an adventurous destination on the brink of even greater things.