Overview & Brief History


Freiburg im Breisgau, commonly known as Freiburg, is a picturesque city nestled in the southwest corner of Germany, near the borders of France and Switzerland. Famous for its medieval Old Town, vibrant cultural scene, and surrounding Black Forest landscapes, Freiburg attracts visitors with its blend of history, natural beauty, and progressive spirit. From its iconic red-roofed buildings and historic squares to its lively markets, cozy cafes, and bustling student population, Freiburg offers a charming and welcoming atmosphere for locals and tourists alike.

A Brief History

The history of Freiburg dates back over 900 years to its founding in 1120 by the dukes of Zähringen. Strategically located along trade routes and at the edge of the Black Forest, Freiburg quickly grew into a prosperous market town and regional center for commerce, culture, and education.

In the Middle Ages, Freiburg thrived as a member of the Holy Roman Empire, with its fortified walls, guildhalls, and Gothic churches symbolizing its wealth and importance. The city’s iconic landmark, the Freiburg Minster, began construction in the 13th century and remains one of the tallest church spires in Germany.

Throughout its history, Freiburg has weathered periods of war, conflict, and political upheaval, including the devastation of World War II. However, the city’s resilient spirit and commitment to rebuilding have led to its transformation into a vibrant and modern metropolis while preserving its historic character.

Today, Freiburg is known for its progressive environmental policies, including sustainable transportation initiatives, green spaces, and renewable energy projects. The city is also home to one of Germany’s oldest and most renowned universities, contributing to its reputation as a center for education, research, and innovation.

Things to See & Do


Freiburg Minster

Visit the impressive Freiburg Minster, a Gothic cathedral with a stunning spire that dominates the city skyline. Admire its intricate architecture, stained glass windows, and ornate sculptures, and climb the tower for panoramic views of Freiburg and the surrounding Black Forest.



Old Town

Explore Freiburg’s charming Old Town, with its narrow cobblestone streets, medieval buildings, and lively squares. Wander through the historic Marktbrunnen square, admire the colorful facades of the merchants’ houses, and browse the shops, cafes, and boutiques that line the streets.




Take a leisurely walk or ride the Schlossbergbahn funicular to the top of Schlossberg, a wooded hill overlooking Freiburg. Enjoy panoramic views of the city, relax in the gardens, and explore the ruins of Schlossberg Castle, which date back to the 11th century.


Augustiner Museum

Visit the Augustiner Museum, housed in a former Augustinian monastery, to discover a diverse collection of art and artifacts spanning centuries of history. Highlights include medieval sculptures, Renaissance paintings, and Baroque decorative arts, as well as contemporary exhibitions.



Admire the Schwabentor, one of Freiburg’s medieval city gates and a symbol of the city’s fortifications. Dating back to the 13th century, the Schwabentor is one of the best-preserved gate towers in Germany and offers a glimpse into Freiburg’s medieval past.


Local Dining


A Taste of Baden

 Immerse yourself in Baden cuisine at traditional restaurants like “Zum rauhen Mann” or “Hausbrauerei Feierling.” Savor hearty dishes like “Käsespätzle” (cheese spaetzle) or “Schwarzwald Schinken” (Black Forest ham), often paired with a glass of Baden wine.



Flammkuchen Feast

Sample a regional favorite – Flammkuchen, a thin-crust pizza topped with various savory ingredients like onions, cheese, and bacon. “Schlafen” offers a cozy atmosphere and delicious variations of this local treat.

Insider Tips

Seek tranquility in the beautiful Stadtgarten, a large public park offering gardens, ponds, and a mini-golf course, perfect for a break from sightseeing.

Purchase a Freiburg City Card for unlimited tram rides and discounted entry to attractions. Freiburg’s tram system is efficient and a great way to explore different neighborhoods.

Take a day trip to the Black Forest, a scenic mountain range with charming villages, hiking trails, and traditional cuckoo clocks.

Virtual Tours

Walking in Freiburg

Black Forest from Above

A Look Inside the Freiburg Minster Cathedral


Interactive Maps

Enjoy a stroll through Old Town

Take a peek inside Freiburg Cathedral

Enjoy the view from Schlossberg


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