I wanted to take a Christmas trip this weekend. I considered Dresden and Cesky Krumlov, both of which are really close to Prague. But my friend, who lives in Germany, suggested Nuremberg which has one of the best Christmas markets in the world. Super glad I took her recommendation. This place is downright magical. But could I live here?
This is a little hard to judge fairly because I’m here around Christmas, and Nuremberg doesn’t just have an epic Christmas market. It’s basically the North Pole. Nuremberg is an old Medieval city and much of the old city center is walled in. It’s really beautiful, but if I lived here, I probably wouldn’t see much of this part of town. And coincidentally, I’m staying at an Airbnb in the more modern part of town where I would probably find myself actually living. And I can’t say that it does much for me. The buildings all look like cement blocks with windows. And I love architecture. One of my favorite things about Prague is that even though I’m outside city center, I live in a beautiful old neighborhood with original ornately molded facades. It makes me excited to go outside. Here, the regular residential neighborhoods are bleak and generic.
As far as the overall feel of the city, I can’t say that I’ve formed an accurate one. Don’t get me wrong. I haven’t been this happy since before Trump got elected, when I still had hope for my future and the future of humanity. (I was pretty happy at home and in Thailand too; I just love being dramatic.) But I feel like that’s 95% Christmas and 10% Nuremberg. 5% inability to add simple numbers together cause it’s Germany and I’m drunk. I do have to say, I feel the same way every time I come here: Czechs drink just as much as Germans, but Germans are happier about it.
Funny enough, when I arrived and I was looking for dinner, Yelp recommended a Czech restaurant. You already know how I feel about that, so I actually said “Fuck no!” aloud to my phone in public. That ironic thing is that German food is not that different. But it doesn’t feel as heavy. The meat is more tender and the potato dumplings are made with a consistency that is not that of a lead brick. And don’t even get me started on how good the sausage is. Overall, eating in Nuremberg has been really successful. Even the generic breakfast buffet I had my first morning had the best eggs ever. Today I had a truffle burger for lunch. I’m pretty sure if I ordered anything with truffle in Prague, I would get the kind of truffle Nicki Minaj sings about.
I don’t know whether I would live here or not, but I can say with certainty that if I did, I would be hella gay. The women in Nuremberg are super attractive, in a way where I feel like they could kick my ass with their clear eyes and edgy haircut. And everyone has been super friendly, though they speak a lot less English than Germans in other cities. But they try to help the linguistically challenged using hand gestures and pointing. Though that may also be Christmas talking. I just keep buying their wooden toys, so I’m sure they love me. All drunken jokes aside, the people are really sweet. Nuremberg has everything I love about Munich when it comes to the people.
When I arrived, I got a one-way ticket for 3 Euro by accident, and I was outraged. Even Berlin isn’t that expensive. But then I realized I had bought a ticket for the entire system even though I was staying within Nuremberg. If I had bought the correct ticket, it would have cost me about half that. The transportation system is also called VAG so that may also account for why I feel so gay here. I’m easily suggestible. But it’s not as expensive to get around here as I originally thought. The whole system is really efficient, because I don’t think Germans know how to be inefficient. And where trains, trams, and buses don’t take you, you can take a pleasant walk to your destination. It’s really safe whether you’re surrounded by millions of people drinking gluhwein or walking by yourself in a remote and quiet area.
I don’t find the city more or less expensive than the rest of Germany. That means it’s much more expensive than where I live now. And one especially annoying thing about Nuremberg is that most places don’t take cards. And this isn’t a small village in Thailand where that makes any sense. So it’s inconvenient for no reason. I keep having to go to the ATM to eat meals and buy wooden toys. I’m not into it. The worst part is that for being so into cash, they make it really hard to get any. There is a serious lack of banks and standalone ATMs around. So when you find one anywhere near city center, the line is crazy.
Total livability score 6/10
It’s not my favorite city in Germany so it wouldn’t be my first choice. But if I had to spend every Christmas here for the rest of eternity, I would be okay with that.