Euro Away Days: Nothing old school in modern Wolfsburg
While Manchester United feel the pressure in their final Champions League Group B qualifier tonight, travelling supporters can experience a city very much unique within Germany.
Man United had been at Old Trafford for almost thirty years before the city of Wolfsburg – venue of course of the giant Volkswagen factory – was founded in 1938.
Now home to over 120,000 people the thriving metropolis boasts a more modern, varied and cosmopolitan atmosphere than many other German cities.
It’s not the biggest but there is plenty to see and do in this youthful city in Lower Saxony.
It may be a young and small city, but that simply means Wolfsburg has a wonderful array of international cuisine coupled with traditional German classics.
Starting at the top, if you really want to splash out, Wolfsburg is home to a 3* Michelin restaurant in the shape of Aqua. One of the finest restaurants in Europe, dishes at Aqua begin at a potentially bank-busting €180 Euros…
Far more traditional is Brauhaus Zu Fallersleben where you’ll find your German staples. Pretzels, sausages, plenty more meats and hearty grub are all on an enticing menu.
But Wolfsburg isn’t like other Deutsch cities, and you’ll be just as at home in An Man (Vietnamese), the Taverne Oniro (Greek) or the best Italian in the town at Trattoria Tarallo.
Whatever it is your hunger needs to be satisfied, modern Wolfsburg will have it.
It may not be a typical German city but Wolfsburg certainly knows how to produce a great beer.
The aforementioned Brauhaus is the ideal spot to quench that thirst for fine German refreshment. In a city not yet 80 years old this is as traditional as you’ll find, but once inside you’ll feel right at home.
Similarly Das Alt goes a long way to eschewing the cosiness of a traditional Bavarian drinking hole. Slap bang in the middle of the city, this is a great place from which to begin an afternoon or evening’s exploring.
And it wouldn’t be a European away day without mentioning the local Irish pub. It’s a good one too.
Called Irish Pub Wob (we’re not sure either) you’ll find regular live music and karaoke nights and it’s always worth sticking your head in at some point.
The world’s best DJs are unlikely to be heading to Wolfsburg any time soon, but the city still holds a handy few places to while away the early hours.
Esplanade and Rizz are two of the city’s bigger clubs, and, like everything else here, they’re right in the centre of town so aren’t difficult to find.
Rizz has had a complete refurbishment in recent years, while Tanzlokal Blodt will only close their doors when you are ready to head home.
Be warned though – Wolfsburg can be a little quiet on weeknights…
There’s plenty here to keep a restless mind busy, especially for history buffs.
The origin of Wolfsburg stems all the way back to an eponymous castle (Wolfsburg translating into English as Wolf Castle), with records dating back to 1302 of its existence.
Three castles are accessible from the city – Wolfsburg, Neuhaus and Fallersleben and each are worthy of a visit with the trio well over 400 years old.
More recent attractions in the city include five museums and the brilliantly impressive Autostadt.
Volkwagen’s brainchild at the turn of the century, Autostadt (car city in English) is a huge visitor attraction located next to VW’s headquarters, and naturally is focused on all things car.
Around two million visitors a year make the visit, which is home to some stunning modern architecture inside and out of the structure, including two 200ft glass silos which deliver brand new cars to customers while maintaining zero miles on the clock.
The venue also boasts a museum, a host of modern interactive features, the largest glass doors in the world and the longest painted line on the planet at a whopping four miles long, though you might not have time to walk along it all…
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