Things to do in Frankfurt

Things to do in  Frankfurt

Get your finances in order

It may be the financial center of Europe, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be glued to your laptop during a trip to Frankfurt, a city rich in history, culture, and stunning architecture. Set against a dramatic backdrop of skyscrapers, a tour of Frankfurt reveals a fascinating mix of old and new. Saint Bartholomew's Cathedral, Romer City Hall, and the Old Opera House exemplify classic building style; while the Squaire complex, MyZeil shopping center, and the brand-new Seat of the European Central Bank show off the cutting edge of architecture. Frankfurt's other main draw is its proximity to some of the most appealing destinations in Germany. You’ll definitely want to take a Rhine Valley cruise, making sure to sample the region’s wines and and visiting picturesque Heidelberg with its historic old town and castle. Further south, on the edge of the Black Forest, take a refreshing dip in one of Baden-Baden’s hot springs; or go all the way to the French border to visit charming Strasbourg. To the west, the fairy tale–worthy Eltz Castle awaits; while to the east, toward Munich, you’ll find the history-rich town of Nuremberg. When you return from your adventure, spend your final night in Frankfurt checking out its legendary electronic music scene.

Top 15 attractions in Frankfurt


Set in the Black Forest region near the border between France and Germany, Baden-Baden offers a charming blend of cultures with grand Art Nouveau villas, modern boutiques, and chic cafés. The town’s thermal waters and ancient Roman baths are its main attractions, including the famous Friedrichsbad spring and Trinkhalle pump room.More

Black Forest

Although the Black Forest is located in one of the sunniest areas of Germany, its name dates back to a time when thick trees shielded the forest floor from light. While there are more clearings now, the country's largest and most renowned forest remains a real-life Grimm fairy tale dotted with gingerbread villages and serene wood-fringed lakes.More

Frankfurt (Main) Hauptbahnhof

For many visitors, the first introduction to Germany’s fast-expanding business and financial center is its main railway station, a building of classical elegance and proportion. Frankfurt’s iron-and-glass Hauptbahnhof was designed by Johann Wilhelm Schwedler and Hermann Eggert and opened for business in 1888; the roof of the Neo-Renaissance central hall is topped with a vast statue of Atlas bearing the weight of the world on his shoulders. Since then, the station has been consistently updated, with two further passenger halls being constructed on either side of the main terminal in 1924. Although the Hauptbahnhof was damaged in World War II, expansion continued and now it has 24 mainline tracks; it is also a terminus for the S-Bahn (rapid transit commuter trains), U-Bahn (metro line) and tram services into the city. Serving up to 450,000 passengers each day commuting into Frankfurt from across the Rhine-Main region, it is the busiest railway station in the country, with high-speed links to major cities throughout Germany and Europe as well as a direct connection to Frankfurt am Main airport.More

St. Paul's Church (Paulskirche)

That St. Paul's Church (Paulskirche) was one of the first buildings to be rebuilt post WWII says a lot about its importance. The landmark church is not only a center of worship; it also played a significant role in Frankfurt’s history, serving as the seat of the 1848 Frankfurt Parliament, the first freely elected German parliament.More

Römerberg Square

Frankfurt’s most important public square, Römerberg is a highlight of the city’s Old Town (Altstadt) and one of its top tourist destinations. A major gathering place since the 15th century, and host to bustling markets and festivals, Römerberg Square is known for its heritage architecture and for being the seat of the local government.More

Old Opera House (Alte Oper)

Inaugurated in 1880, Frankfurt’s Old Opera House (Alte Oper) was among Germany’s elite opera houses during its 20th-century heyday. Left in ruins after WWII, it finally reopened in 1981 and is now one of the city’s leading concert venues, hosting around 300 classical and popular music events throughout the year.More

Goethe House & Museum (Goethehaus)

This Frankfurt attraction is popular among literary pilgrims. It combines the Goethe House—the restored birthplace of famed writer Johann Wolfgang Goethe—with a 14-gallery museum, which displays art and objects from Goethe’s era.More

Iron Bridge (Eiserner Steg)

The looming steel peaks of the Iron Bridge (Eiserner Steg) have framed Frankfurt’s skyline since 1869; a homage to the city’s industrial age. The only footbridge across the Main River, the Iron Bridge links the Old Town and Römerberg Square on the north bank, with Old Sachsenhausen and the Museum Embankment on the south bank.More

Lake Titisee

Formed by glaciers some 10,000 years ago, Lake Titisee is nestled in the heart of Black Forest National Park. The ancient alpine waters of this popular vacation destination draw outdoor sports enthusiasts year-round, from hiking and boating in summer to ice skating and skiing in the mountains when temperatures drop.More

Frankfurt Cathedral (Frankfurter Dom)

One of Germany’s grandest and most important cathedrals, Frankfurter Dom dates back to the 13th century and dominates the city’s skyline. The landmark was once where Holy Roman Emperors were crowned and today exhibits several major artworks, including the Lamentation of Christ by Antonius van Dyck and Job by Emil Schumacher.More

Frankfurt City Hall (Romer)

Standing proud on the western edge of Frankfurt’s central Römerberg square, Frankfurt City Hall (Romer) is both the city’s administrative headquarters and one of its most memorable landmarks. Characterized by its pink three-peaked façade, stepped gables and domed bell tower; it’s a regal feat of medieval architecture.More

Frankfurt Main Tower

At 660 feet (200 meters), the Frankfurt Main Tower is only the fourth tallest building in Frankfurt, but it’s the still the city’s highest observation deck. Standing at the heart of Frankfurt’s central business district, the tower’s rooftop observation deck affords spectacular views over the city and the Main River.More

Main River

The view along the tree-lined banks of the Main River is Frankfurt’s most famous, looking out across the skyscraper-studded skyline. Running through the heart of Frankfurt, the Main River is the longest within Germany, flowing 327 miles (527 kilometers) from Bamberg to Mainz, and traversing three German states before joining the Rhine River.More


With a string of world-class museums lining the banks of the Main River; Frankfurt’s Museum Embankment (Museumsufer) is one of Germany’s most important cultural hubs. Over a dozen museums call the Museumsufer home, housed in a series of beautifully restored 18th-century villas.More

Städel Museum (Städelsches Kunstinstitut und Städtische Galerie)

Home to one of Europe’s finest art collections, the Städel Museum (Städelsches Kunstinstitut und Städtische Galerie is a highlight of Frankfurt’s Museum Embankment, located on the southern bank of the Main River. Its collection spans over 700 years of art history, and includes more than 100,000 works of art.More

Trip ideas

Top activities in Frankfurt

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Frankfurt Impressions Express

Frankfurt Impressions Express

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Cologne Day Trip from Frankfurt

Cologne Day Trip from Frankfurt

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All about Frankfurt

When to visit

Summer is the liveliest time to visit Frankfurt, when urban beaches spring up along the Main River and events include the Apple Wine Festival, Museum Embankment Festival, and the Main Festival. Alternatively, Frankfurt is bursting with holiday spirit over the festive season, hosting one of Germany’s largest Christmas markets.

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People Also Ask

What is Frankfurt famous for?

As the headquarters for the Central European Bank, Frankfurt is well-known as Germany’s business and finance hub. But for tourists, it’s most famous for towering skyscrapers, fantastic museums and architecture—and its beloved sausages.

How do I spend a day in Frankfurt?

Visit Römerberg in Old Town, a square with half-timbered houses and a gabled Town Hall. Scope out water views from Eiserner Steg bridge, or stop at a museum (try Städel Museum) near River Main at Frankfurt’s Museumsufer. St. Paul’s Church, the Kleinmarkthalle, and the Goethe House are popular too.

What can you do in Frankfurt If you are interested in Goethe?

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was born in Hamburg in 1749. You can visit the three-story bourgeois-style home of his birth—and the desk where he penned Faust—and get a taste for how the gentry of the day lived. Next door, visit the Goethe Museum for a deeper look at his literary legacy.

What is there to do in Frankfurt on Sundays?

Frankfurt’s incredible museums are usually open 10am–6pm on Sundays. Otherwise, grab a glass of apfelwein (apple wine), Frankfurt’s most famous drink, along the cobblestone streets of the Sachsenhausen neighborhood; walk around the Financial District, and peer from the public viewing platforms at the top of the 56-story Main Tower.

What can you do in Frankfurt for free?

On Sundays, tour Old Town; climb up 324 steps to the top of the Frankfurt Cathedral (dating back to the 14th and 15th centuries); wander the Kleinmarkthalle stalls; or book a free tour of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. City museums are free on the last Saturday of the month, too

Is Frankfurt worth visiting?

Yes. Frankfurt’s status as both modern—the city’s business district is nicknamed “Mainhattan,” a silver-clad skyline on the River Main—and medieval is not to be missed. There’s an array of museums, cultural attractions, and historical sites to keep discerning travelers busy.

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