Kassel is the regional “capital” of North Hesse in Germany and has a population of about 200 000.Kassel has been first mentioned around 900 AD. Since then it has always been a provincial capital for the realms of North Hesse or Kur-Hesse.During the 30 years war Kassels Landgraf Philipp declared for the protestants. This had an effect as later numerous Hugenots emigrated from France and brought with them their trade and skills. The impact of the Hugenots can still be witnessed in the centre of Kassel where streets are named after Hugenots.Kassel became a considerable industrial and scientific city as can still be seen in the Orangerie museum where loads of scientific kit from the enlightenment period is on show. Noticeably the first steam pot producing a fountain was constructed in Kassel by Papin and rumors have it that he left Kassel in his steam boat a few years before James Watt got his prototype into shape.Kassel was already a heavy industries site by WW2, where trains, tanks and planes were constructed. In the later years of World War II Kassel was thoroughly bombed by English and American planes.Kassel was home to the Grimm Brothers who collected, edited and published the folk tales made famous by Disney cartoons. Their work is documented in the GRIMMWELT museum (German site). The best way to reach Kassel is by train since most of the Inter-City Express (ICE) trains and plenty of local trains stop at the Kassel-Wilhemshahe station, about 4 kilometres west of the city centre. The Busbahnhof Kassel Wilhelmshahe (intercity bus station), also known as the Busparkplatz, adjoins the Kassel-Wilhemshahe station. Kassel’s historic Hauptbahnhof (central station), also known as the Kulturbahnhof , is very near the city center, but is mostly serviced by regional trains. Trains run between the two stations. It is much easier to see the downtown area if you take a train to the Hauptbahnhof and begin your exploring from there.If you are staying a few days in Kassel, buy a public transport Wochenkarte. For about 22 , you can use all public transport in Kassel and the surrounding villages for one week. For shorter trips, you can use MultiTicket (24 hours or one weekend of unlimited travel within the KasselPlus-Zone for 2 adults and up to 3 children) or MultiTicket Single (only one adult).Further information can be found here (German site) or on the ticket vending machines, which are available in English. Please note that they do not sell the Wochenkarte. Shopping can be somewhat difficult in Kassel compared to the United States, but most of the good shopping is located close to the Rathaus so if you get off the Strassenbahn around there you can do most of your shopping. The “Fussgaengerzone” Obere Koenigsstrasse, pedestrian mall, that runs through the center of downtown, has many shops, street cafes and can be quite busy with people on Fridays and Saturdays. It starts at the old city hall and ends at the Koenigsplatz, where turns into Untere Koenigsstrasse. One of the big department stores along Koenigsstrasse is Kaufhof, where one can find good quality clothing, house wares and a food and drink department in the basement.The are many restaurants, cafes and street vendors in town. The Nordsee is a chain of stores/restaurants throughout Germany, where one can buy fresh buns with fish at their window kiosks or eat inside a small restaurant (Obere Koenigsstrasse). The butchers in Kassel sell buns with cold cuts, fresh spiced minced meat and hot sausage (Kochwurst). My favorite is: Fleischerei Barthel, Obere Koenigsstrasse, just around the corner on Wilhelmsstrasse.

Airport: KSF Kassel-Calden Airport Cities in Germany

Country: Germany