Home of the University of Halle-Wittenberg, one of the oldest in Germany, Halle an der Saale has a proud heritage as a center of education in the southern corner of the state of Saxony-Anhalt.
The University of Halle was founded in 1694 and has since been merged with the University of Wittenberg. It is home to a medical school established by Friedrich Hoffmann, a botanical garden which dates back to 1698 and one of the most respected scientific societies in the country.
When you arrive at the old Market Square in the heart of town, you’ll find the Marktkirche dating back to the early sixteenth century, built by using elements of two much older medieval churches. This church notably owns the original death mask of Martin Luther. The church’s four towers and the nearby Red Tower are widely recognized symbols of Halle.
Hike up to the old castle Burg Giebichenstein, towering over the Saale River, to enjoy remarkable views of the city. This castle is now an art school, while another city castle has been converted into an art museum. Now known as the Kunstmuseum Moritzburg, it holds works by Klimt, Klee and Ernst.
For a different form of art, take a tasting trip to the Halloren Chocolate Factory. Officially Germany's oldest chocolate producer, it dates back to the establishment of a honey cake bakery here in 1804.
Along with its art history, the city also has a strong musical heritage. Walk through the market square and you will come across a Monument to Baroque composer George Frideric Handel, who was born in Halle in 1685 and grew up in the city. Handel's House, where he lived for much of his life, now serves as a museum dedicated to his work, while the city also stages an annual Handel Festival of his music.
Fans of the Fab Four can also explore the Beatles Museum. While the Liverpudlian group never came to the city, avid fan Rainer Moers displays his vast collection of memorabilia across three floors.
This love of music and art, along with the youthful zeal of a university town give Halle a contemporary vibe to go with its long medieval history.
Museums, Historical Buildings and Culture