Together with Münster, Osnabrück was the venue of the Peace of Westphalia, which was proclaimed from the steps of the Town Hall in 1648.
The peace agreement is the most momentous event in the city’s history and is remembered to this day: every October, around 1,200 schoolchildren ride over the Town Hall steps on home-made hobby horses in memory of the proclamation of the Peace of Westphalia. Guided tours of the city and the popular Night Watch tours begin on the historic chairs in the Friedenssaal (Hall of Peace).
Today the city has a vibrant feel thanks to the eclectic mix of modern buildings, like the Felix-Nussbaum-Haus or the Kamp-Promenade, and picture-perfect historic streets in the Heger Tor neighbourhood of the Old Town. The partially preserved medieval warehouses, the “Steinwerke”, today house galleries, cafés and bistros.
The heart of the city is the marketplace, a venue for weddings, festivals, wine and Christmas markets. On warm days, the cafés and restaurants place wicker chairs in front of the red and yellow gabled houses, and you can take in the view of the Town Hall and the Marienkirche (Church of St Mary), while enjoying some Kaffee und Kuchen. From the marketplace it is just a few steps to the impressive 13th-century St. Peter’s Cathedral, with its different sized towers, its peaceful cloister and walk-in vault in the Diocesan Museum.