Altenburg is known as the birthplace of Germany's most popular card game "SKAT". Founded more than 1000 years ago, Altenburg looks back on a splendid past as a royal residence. Strolling through narrow cobblestone streets, along magnificent 19th century buildings, through parks or across the Renaissance market place, one is immediately taken back to a different world.

Highlights/Places of interest

Altenburg Castle

How can you describe such impressive architectural art? Please visit our castle and enjoy a stunning architectural diversity. Even before the year 800, the great great ancestor of today's Altenburg townsfolk, Slavic tribes came and secured the first plant. Otto I promoted the building of a castle as an outpost of the German occupation. In 1132 we already speak of an imperial fortress. Emperor Barbarossa appreciated his Palatinate beyond measure. The Wettin dynasty resides here from 1307 until after World War I. Spectacular, of course, was the "Saxon Prince robbery" in 1455, when Knight Kunz von Kauffungen kidnapped the Princes Ernest and Albert. The castle has been rebuilt and extended tirelessly for centuries. Now it is being renovated and refurbished. Appendant to the Castle is the Castle and Playing Card Museum, where you can find significant collections of arms, watches, porcelain and furniture. An hourly-guided tour shows the banqueting halls and the beautiful gothic church.

Bartholomew Church

The oldest and most famous of all churches in Altenburg. Location of an incident in 1523, which offended the resident monks, when Martin Luther married a Priest to a local woman. Later on, the Friar’s Church became the first parish church and Spalatin became the first evangelic dean.

Altenburg marketplace

Altenburg marketplace has six sections allotted around the old town: the main market, Brühl, corn market, pottery market, skirts market and cattle market. Market is held Wednesday and Saturday. A first reference of the main market as novum forum was in 1192. The Altenburg Town Hall is one of the most important renaissance buildings in Germany. It is the seat of the municipal administration. The Town Hall is a three-floor building with an octagonal stair tower on the south side of the main market. The entrance shows the so-called “Gaffköpfe”, which symbolize the craftsmen and councillors during construction time between 1561 and 1644. These days the City of Altenburg uses it as administration office.

Red Spires

The town’s landmark opens its doors only once a year, when the day of the open monuments takes place. Emperor Barbarossa was benefactor and he attended the inauguration in 1172. The former monastery is built of brick like it was modern in Italy at this time. Through a stroke of lightning one of the two spires got destroyed and was rebuilt in a round baroque way. After this the Red Spires went through a lot of changes…from a monastery to an orphanage, then from a house for widows, to a prison and psychiatry. Today, the Red Spires are closed for preservation of monuments and historic buildings.

Mauritianum Natural History Museum

Do you know Alfred and Christian Brehm? The icons of German natural science during the 19th century? The museum in Art Noveau was built in 1908 and it houses the immense natural science collections of the brothers Brehm. Today, the Altenburg County Natural Science Association welcomes visitors to explore local flora and fauna and seasonal changing exhibitions.

Big Pond and Isle of Zoo

The whole area of the big pond was artificially created in the 12th century and has an area of 10 hectare. Duke Friedrich II had the Isle filled up on a shallow area of the pond. Connected to the waterside by a bridge, visitors can stroll across to enter the islands zoo. Here you find numerous animals, a nice playground for your kids and a petting zoo. You may want to rent a paddleboat and explore the big pond yourself.

Historic Hairdresser’s

A unique place in a beautiful late Baroque town house. Visiting the historic hairdresser’s you will be carried back into the twenties. The antique interior is still from the old owner, Arthur Grosse, who used to live upstairs his salon. His bedroom from 1926 can be seen as well as old combs, curlers, scissors, hair dryer and loads of old books filled with hairstyles from the 1920s.

Altenburg Theatre

The Neo-Renaissance Theatre was built in 1869 after the ideal of the “Semperoper” in Dresden. Its capacity amounts 536 seats. It was inaugurated with the Freischütz by Carl Maria von Weber. The “Theater & Philharmonie Thüringen” presents opera, ballet, comedy, a philharmonic orchestra and much more. Please visit our Tourist Information to buy tickets for any performance at the Altenburg Theatre.

Altenburg Brewery

The Altenburg Brewery was founded in 1871. The brew masters produce various kind of beer. When you are staying in Altenburg you should pay a visit to the brewery. Stroll through the beer museum and take a look behind the curtain. The “Sudhausstube” right above the production facilities invites you to taste as much beer as you want, including a hearty plate with regional specialties for only 10€ per person.

Lindenau Art Museum

“To teach the Young – to delight the Old” That is the motto of Bernhard August von Lindenau, politician and art collector. The collections of Lindenau are the foundation of the museum showing early Italian Renaissance altar pieces, ancient sculptures, antique Etruscan ceramics, expressionist drawings, modern art work and seasonal changing exhibitions. The Lindenau Art Museum is known notion-wide and has its name among the most important museums in Germany. The Lindenau Museum houses an Art School for young townsfolk.

Altenburg Distillery

The Altenburg Distillery sells over 100 varieties of Liqueur at affordable prices, which you may taste in the well-equipped showroom. Try creamy, fruity or herbal liquor distilled right in the heart of Altenburg. Groups can book a tour of the Schnaps museum.



Tourismus-Information Altenburger Land

Markt 10
04600 Altenburg


Tel: +49 (0) 3447 / 89 66 89
Fax: +49 (0) 3447 / 89 66 88