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The 12 'gafapastadas' of Leipzig

They say that in the late 80s, Leipzig It was a city not recommended for human life. The pollution, humidity and bad milk accumulated by its inhabitants after years being part of the useless GDR made it inhospitable and boring. More than 25 years later she has risen using all the art that overflows and made her famous in the past and with some odd modernity.

Let's be honest. In Leipzig, on average, you don't eat well. Or at least, a Spanish of 1.70 meters and 13% body fat does not eat well. Therefore, it is best to look for places to enjoy a different environment and, at least, take a good anecdote home. These two recommendations are also two geographical extremes.
The first is the Auerbachs Keller, one of the oldest taverns in known Europe. It all started when a doctor and doctor from his famous university called Heinrich Stromer of Auerbach opened a bar for students. The fact that a teacher decides to enable a place for drunkenness of his pupils may seem counterproductive, but our dear Heinrich was convinced that the wine is a very prophylactic against various ailments.

Auerbachs Keller, the antique made tavern © Corbis

The place popularized it to the extreme Goethe, number one fan of the evening parties here. In fact, in his Splendor, the famous German writer placed here the first of the stops of the different trips in which Mephistopheles guided Faust. An amazing statue of both welcomes every customer at the entrance, located in the Mädler Passage. Next to it are the stairs that lead to the basement where this special place is located that He is waiting for the 100,000,000th guest of his History.

Goethe statue at the entrance of Mädler Passage © Corbis

If the old brewery is below street level, the 4 restaurants of the Panorama Tower they are about 140 meters high. Almost nothing. It has that tip of being in the heart of the city and of being a balcony from where to look out over the city and get views of the famous Augustusplatz. Of course, provided you respect the weather, something miraculous in these latitudes.

View of Leipzig from the Panorama Tower © Corbis

If something resisted wars, occupations and brainwashing in Leipzig, it was the art. His Academy was, has been and is one of the most famous in the world and in recent years the city has been determined to get its backlash. Therefore, in 2004 it opened with fanfare and uproar the new building of the Museum of Fine Arts, known as the MDBK, a large glazed prism that welcomes the best of international contemporary art.

New Museum of Fine Arts © MDBK

But if this were not enough, the new millennium also brought a new reuse of industrial areas that were close to the city. Thus arose the Spinnereilan old spinning mill that is today a space for art, exhibition and scholarship life. A true factory where art is produced: from the easels of the artists to the galleries where they exhibit.

The old spinning mill, now converted into a cultural center © Spinnerei Leipzig

Before thread, today culture © Spinnerei Leipzig

Saving distances, Leipzig has a bit of Berlin. It was precisely in this city where popular protests against the GDR regime began. Demonstrations without organizations behind, born instantly from citizens and that inspired a month later, the Berlin Wall fell. Leipzig is full of icons that recall both the Second World Guera and the communist era and popular revolts, but the most striking are the gigantic murals that occupy entire buildings recalling these acts.

Almost like in Berlin © Corbis

6, 7 and 8 MUSIC CAPITAL
It is impossible to disassociate Leipzig from classical music because of some illustrious neighbors like Bach, Mendelssohn or Wagner. Far from releasing here a symphony of reasons and geographical points for mythomaniacs, there are three special places to highlight. First, the Church of Santo Tomás, headquarters of one of the most recognized children's choirs on the planet. A chorus conducted by Bach himself, whose mortal remains rest inside.
The Gewandhaus It has everything that can be asked of a concert hall: an enviable acoustics (it was said that the best in the world) and a centennial orchestra that knows how to overcome every year. Too bad that the current futuristic design of its lines is neither futuristic nor monumental.
On the other side of the Augustusplatz is the other musical temple, that of the Opera. Same ingredients as the orchestra, but also the same drama. Many History, different venues and a surprising interior with its almost 1500 locations. However, on the outside it seems to be nothing more than a neoclassical building without any grace. The nth skid of the GDR.

The Leipzig Opera House and the Panorama Tower © Corbis

Without moving from the Augustusplatz, the third most surprising building on this large esplanade looks like the modern version of a church. In fact, it even has its name: Paulinerkirche. But if their doors are crossed, what is found is a university headquarters in this city. Everything has an explanation. Back in the 70s, the local government decided to tear down one of the most beautiful churches in the city to undertake the expansion of the university buildings. When democracy and sanity returned, it was decided that said building it would be built in the same way as the old temple, in a way to claim Germanic culture. In fact, in the new arrangement of the place a space for prayer has been reserved, yes, without distinction of religion or creed.

It is not a church. Although it was © Corbis

10, 11 and 12 IT'S NOT MILAN, BUT ALMOST ...
A problem: it rains a lot here and we want to buy. One solution: the creation of great passages that emulate the Milanese galleries with shops of all kinds, although all with old taste. The most monumental and spectacular? Point 3: The Mädler, the Königshaus and the Messehof; all of them peculiar with grandiloquent stores, little globalized and very curious.
* You may also be interested ...
- The art of the 21st century is cooked in Leipzig
- All articles by Javier Zori del Amo

Interior of the Mädler Gallery © Corbis

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