10 Free Things to Do in Frankfurt
Frankfurt might be a bustling city full of European and international banks, but that doesn’t mean the city is all about business. The capital of European finance has lots to see and do, and despite its expensive reputation, much of it is free! Whether you find yourself in Frankfurt on a long layover, or you’re here to explore the historical city, there’s lots to see for at no cost! Here are 10 Free Things to Do in Frankfurt!
1. Römer / Neue Altstadt
Frankfurt’s old city is as charming as it is timeless. Located in the city centre, and only steps from the river Main, the Römer and the Neue Altstadt (translated literally to, ‘new old city’) is full of restaurants, shops, cafés, and tons of Instagram hot spots for you to check out! This is also where the city hosts their famous Christmas Market. While the Römer is definitely more well known, the Neue Altstadt only opened in Spring 2018 after an extensive restoration project. So while the buildings are new, they’re built to appear exactly as the city did before the destruction of World War II.
2. Walk along the river Main
Frankfurt’s famous river Main is a great way to discover the city. Grab a beer or apfelwein from a kiosk, and head to the river! Whether you want to walk, bike, or relax, it’s a great way to, “live like a local” for a bit. To get the best views of the equally famous skyline, be sure to head to the Sachsenhausen side of the river!
Tip: Cross at Holbeiner Steg to Sachsenhausen for a great view :)
3. Eiserner Steg
Even if love locks aren’t your thing, this bridge is definitely worth a visit. Built in 1868, this pedestrian bridge is a great place to cross back to the “Frankfurt” side of the river if you took our above suggestion. Eiserner Steg also gives you a great view of the skyline, and if love locks ARE your thing, you can lock it up and throw away the key!
4. Galeria Kaufhof platform/myZeil
If you’re scared of heights, or don’t want to spend money to see the city from Main Tower, you can check out the free platform in Galeria Kaufhof! Take the elevator or escalator to the top floor and check out the skyline from a different perspective. You can also go to the top floor of myZeil shopping centre and get another nice view of the city.
Photo credit: @twsbanter
5. Red Light District
Walking around here is free, obviously! And since Five Elements Hostel is located smack dab in the middle of it, we’re sure you’ll see a bit of this place while in Frankfurt. If you want to get some info on the district’s background, we recommend signing up with a free walking tour. While the tours are free, a tip to your tour guide is always appreciated!
You can also find a SUPER surprise on the corner of Elbestraße & Taunusstraße, but you have to look up! You’ll feel your spidey senses tingling ;)
6. Willy Brandt Platz
While this isn’t necessarily a tourist destination, it’s directly beside the former European Central Bank headquarters (now located in the North side of the city), and the famous Euro symbol. The square is constantly busy with trams, pedestrians, cyclists, and people just hanging out. It’s a great place to take a break, have a drink, and people watch.
7. European Central Bank (ECB)
You probably know at this point that Frankfurt is a banking city, so it should come at no surprise that it’s also the home of the European Central Bank. The former location is located only minutes from Five Elements Hostel, and is landmarked by the giant Euro symbol sign. However, the new location opened in 2015 and is located further down the river. Like much of the skyline, it’s a great example of the modern architecture in Frankfurt. Near the new ECB location, you can also check out the outdoor fitness park, which is full of equipment to get your sweat on!
8. Nidda Park
If you want to totally escape the urban bustle, then Nidda Park is where you’ll want to be. Bordered by Bockenheim, Ginnheim, Praunhein, and Hausen neighbourhoods, getting here is easy. Within the park, you can enjoy several walking trails, use fitness equipment, or find a nice green place to enjoy the afternoon. It’s a great place for a picnic, and with over 168 hectares of park space, you should be able to find a suitable spot!
9. Alte Oper
One of the most beautiful buildings in Frankfurt, Alte Oper is most definitely a place you should check out. The building was inaugurated in 1880, but was destroyed by bombs in 1944 during World War II. The city began rebuilding the opera house in 1970, and was finally completed in 1981. In front of Alte Oper is the Opernplatz, another beautiful square where you can get lots of great pics and chill with friends. Chilling here and admiring the architecture is one of our favourite free things in Frankfurt!
10. Eschenheimer Turm
Not far from the main shopping street, you can find the 15th century Gothic watchtower, Eschenheimer Turm! Did you know this tower marks one of the former gate entrances of the former city wall? Check out the free map available for guests at Five Elements Hostel to see for yourself! You can find great shops and restaurants in the area, too.
Where to Stay in Frankfurt
Our top recommendation for accommodation in Frankfurt am Main is Five Elements Hostel, the top rated hostel in the city. While it might be located in the middle of the Red Light District, don’t let that deter you from it. Five Elements Hostel has a reputation for being a safe, clean, and incredibly fun hostel for travellers of all kinds. Offering dorms, private rooms, and apartments, you’ll certainly find the right room for you. You can also partake in their free, daily activities, and enjoy Happy Hour at the bar every night from 6 – 8 PM. And if this isn’t enough, wait until you meet their incredible staff who will ensure your stay will be one you won’t soon forget.
10 Free Things to Do in Frankfurt
Frankfurt is a gorgeous destination and offers lots of free activities for all types of travellers. If you’re looking for more information to help you plan, click here. Our blog ranges from city guides, to food guides, travel tips, and more, all in an effort to inspire your next getaway. For all the latest news at Famous Hostels, follow us or subscribe on Instagram, Facebook, and Youtube.