Without doubt one of the most picturesque towns in Germany with its wonderful location on the banks of the Moselle river. The town lies in a valley between vine-covered hills of red sandstone near the border with Luxembourg in the Moselle wine region and lays claim to being Germany’s oldest town.
The town was founded originally founded in the 4th century B.C. and was eventually overrun by the Romans in the 1st century A.D. The city received the relics of St. Matthias and as a result it grew into an import place of pilgrimage culminating in bishop being elevated to the status of Archbishop.
The middle Ages saw the foundation of the University in 1473 making it one of the oldest learning institutions in Germany. The town’s most famous native, Karl Marx, was born in the city in 1818 and would go on to revolutionise political writing and thinking.
In 1940 over 60,000 British Prisoners of War, captured in Dunkirk and Northern France, were brought to Trier which eventually see the town become a staging post for British soldiers headed for Prisoner-of-War Camps. As a result the city was heavily bombed but by 1974 nearly all the town had been rebuilt to its former splendour.
Porta Nigra (the Black Gate)
The incredible sandstone gate to the city was built between 186 – 200 AD as an entrance into the city. Its name however was given in the Middle Ages as a reference to the dark colour the stone had turned to.
Consisting of three Roman Baths, that is the largest Bath complex north of the Alps.
The Cathedral, dedicated to St. Peter, is the oldest cathedral in Germany. As a result almost every period of architecture is represented in its façade as many additions where placed alongside older parts. Dating back to 329 the building began as a chapel dedicated to St. Helen, the mother of Constantine the Great, and for many years was one of the largest ecclesiastical structures outside Rome. Its reliquary contains the skull of St. Helen and is displayed in the Cathedral.
Liebfrauenkirke (Church of Our Lady)
One of the earliest gothic structures to be built in Germany reportedly being begun in 1209. The building was finished around 1492 and was one of the great pieces of architecture primarily because of its round floor plan. The unique design is made to resemble a twelve-petaled rose, the symbol of the Virgen Mary as well as the Twelve Tribes of Israel and the Twelve Apostles