Bremen, in northern Germany, has a 1,200 year history as a busy trading port and is today a lively city, with a thriving economy, a large student population, and a focus on family life.
While it is an industrious and bustling city, Bremen also retains a timeless charm. In the evenings and at weekends residents congregate in the handsome city center, wandering along cobbled alleyways, browsing in shops selling hand-crafted goods, and enjoying a coffee or locally-brewed beer at one of the many pavement cafes and bars.
Bremen’s Kulturmeile (Cultural Mile) in downtown Bremen links cultural jewels including the central library, the Bremen Theatre and the Kunsthalle Art Gallery. The latter houses a permanent collection of paintings, sculpture and engravings spanning 600 years. The Weserburg Museum of Modern Art showcases national and international artists with permanent and visiting exhibitions.
Most Bremen residents are soccer mad and loyal followers of SV Werder Bremen, one of Europe's leading teams whose home ground is the 42,500-seater Weser Stadium.
Every year, top cyclists arrive in Bremen to compete in the world's biggest six-day race, hosted at the city’s AWD Dome and attracting thousands of spectators. Bremen’s waterside location means sailing and canoeing are popular leisure pursuits, as are jogging and cycling.
Bremen’s international airport is situated approximately 3 km south of the city center and serves German cities plus the UK, Scandinavia, Greece, Spain and France.
Bremen’s location makes it a premier hub for goods being transported throughout Germany, many of which are brought from around the world via its sister city, Bremerhaven.
Germany has an efficient transportation system and Bremen is well-connected to other cities and bordering countries by autobahns and an extensive railway network. The main railway station operates regional trains and regular services to Berlin, Hanover, Munich and Hamburg as well as cities further afield, including Vienna and Amsterdam.
There is a reliable system of trams and buses in Bremen, and it is known to be among the most cycling-friendly cities in Germany. Bikes can be hired from several city center shops and at the railway station.
Education is regarded as a keystone of German life, and Bremen has a wide choice of private and state-funded schools as well as a number of higher education institutions, including the University of Bremen, which is attended by around 22,000 students and has an excellent reputation for its digital media, engineering and science courses. Other institutions include the Jacobs University and Bremen University of Applied Sciences.
Family life is an important part of life in Bremen, as reflected in its amenities; the city has some 200 public playgrounds and many family-friendly cultural and sports activities. Most neighborhoods have a wide choice of sports clubs.