A Stroll through Bahnhofsviertel
What’s up Frankfurt? Slip on your sneakers, slide into your most comfortable pair of jeans and join us on our exploration of Bahnhofsviertel. Get ready for a wild ride!
Ah “der Bahnhof“ and her surrounding streets! Dishevelled elegance with a hint of other era grace. No other district is quite like this one. Often a topic of hot discussion – everyone has an opinion on Bahnhofsviertel! Many worlds collide here in this tiny built up area. Surrounded by the beautiful Main river to the south, Bankenviertel to the East and Westend to the north, this is the meeting place of many contrasts and juxtapositions. Rich/poor, east/west, old/young, fancy/run-down. As a result, the culinary experiences, the diversity of options and the atmosphere are unparalleled in the city. It is the only district in Frankfurt which never sleeps. So come join us and see for yourself.
The central station is often the gateway to great cities and Frankfurt is no exception. Frankfurt central station is currently undergoing a major revamp which is set to be completed in 2024. This will serve to make this amazing structure cleaner, brighter, more commercial and more functional.
Bahnhofsviertel runs from the central train station towards downtown Mainhattan on three parallel axes. From left to right: Taunusstrasse, Kaiserstrasse and Münchener Strasse. Each street has its own distinct character and culture. Outside of these three main streets, Gutleutstrasse and Mainzer Landstrasse frame up the outer edges of this district.
This street is home to many Turkish and Middle Eastern restaurants, shops, kiosks and barber shops. And yes, there is more on offer than Döner Kebabs!
Hamsilos & Schenck’s Fischrestaurant offers a variety of fish dishes. The restaurant offers outside seating in spring, summer and autumn. Situated in the heat of action, the bustling busy street atmosphere makes this a definite must-visit.
If you prefer a little more exclusivity, Münchener Strasse has just the thing: Club Michel. This is a members-only dinner club. If you are on the guest list, ring the door bell and you will be led through a hidden courtyard and up a secretive flight of stairs to the dining hall. The menue varies from month to month, as does the chef and kitchen team. Enter your details via the sign-up web site to get on the guest list.
Foto 1, Club Michel: @rheinmainmag
Babam is a Persian restaurant which has taken over the retail space where Fletcher’s Better Burger used to be. This is an amazing addition to the culinary offering in Bahnhofsviertel.
Münchener Strasse hosts some of Frankfurt’s most legendary bars including Plank, Maxi Eisen and the infamous YokYok. Here you will find plenty of new-age German hipsters, high-powered business professionals, students and everything in between. Take a walk down this street, weather permitting, between 17.30 and 18.30 and soak up the atmosphere of people enjoying their “Feierabend-Apéro“.
If you feel like treating your tastebuds to something exotic, Kinly Bar is just a hop-skip and a jump-over on Elbestrasse. This is a world-class cocktail bar in an underground vault. Be prepared for a true adventure in extreme contrasts. We don’t want to release any spoilers, so just go there and find out for yourself. They have moved venue and can now be found across the street in Elbestrasse 29.
As the name suggests, Kaiserstrasse is the central axis of Bahnhofsviertel, running directly from the station crossing Neue Mainzer Strasse and into the heart of downtown Frankfurt. It is a tree-lined boulevard with large pedestrian pavements on either side. Kaiserstrasse has a culture of its own. You will find culinary delights from all over the world. Canadian street food to go, Argentine Steak, Indian cuisine, Thai, Italian, Chinese, bakeries, coffee, bubble tea, beer, spirits, and the list goes on.
Not only is the food diverse but also the people. A medley of business men with suitcase in tow, office workers, tourists and the homeless as well as the odd prostitute make for a diverse mix. On Tuesday and Thursday Kaiserstrasse hosts a farmers market which brings in even more people to fill the street.
You can also take advantage of one of several Asian shops such as Spicelands. This shop focusses on Indian and East Asian cuisine and stocks all the ingredients for your favourite curries, dals and snacks. The aroma, languages spoken, and packaging will transport you to another world.
This street is partly responsible for the dark and dirty reputation that some might associate Bahnhofsviertel with. This, along with Elbestrasse and Moselstrasse, makes up Frankfurt’s red light district. The area received less bomb damage during the second world war than other areas of Frankfurt. Also, this used to be the main hotel area and because of this was used to house U.S. soldiers. The imbalance between the war-stricken local population and the comparatively wealthy military set the scene for the socioeconomic background of the emergence of the red light district.
If you would like to learn more about the history of Bahnhofsviertel, why not take a guided tour? You can book your slot online and discover more about the fascinating story of this district:
Curious about further hotspots in the city? Click here to find more english articles!
British born European. Loves exercise and the outdoors. After stints in China, South East Asia and Australia now calls Frankfurt his home. Has a soft spot for champagne and can never get enough schnitzel. Avid traveller and keen photographer.