Historical buildings & museums

Bruchsal has a lot of historical buildings to discover.

German Museum of Musical Automata

Housed in the palace is the German Museum of Musical Automata, which thanks to its acquisition of more than 100 valuable instruments from the Carlson collection of Königslutter, is now among the largest such collections in the world.

Some 500 exhibits, it traces the development of automated music from the first tiny pipes of the cuckoo clock to the huge, transportable automata with squeeze-boxes, drums and cymbals that later followed.

The collection also features a grand pianola that once belonged to Germany's first post-war chancellor, Konrad Adenauer.
The museum also reconstructs some of the settings in which such automata were typically used. These include a cinema for silent movies, a historic pub and dancehall.

Most of the museum can be viewed without a guide and visitors are welcome to operate some of the exhibits to hear how such automata sound.
German Museum of Musical Automata
Schlossraum/Schönbornstraße, 76646 Bruchsal
Tel: +49 (0) 7251 742661
Mail: dmm@landesmuseum.de
Homepage

For more information, opening times and prices:

www.dmm-bruchsal.de

Town Museum

The exhibition in the Städtisches Museum (Town Museum) on the upper storey of the palace not only chronicles the ancient and early history of the town but also features a mineral collection, coins and medals and archaeological finds from the early Neolithic to
the medieval periods. The main focuses of the exhibition that records the town's history are the story of the penal system in Bruchsal from 1848 until the second half of the 20th Century and a documentary about the destruction of the town on 1 March 1945.

The museum is also especially interesting for children, young people and families. Young visitors are accompanied on their tour by "Michi", a stone age boy who appears on the many easy-to-read signs throughout the museum.

Baroque Palace Bruchsal
Schlossraum/Schönbornstraße, 76646 Bruchsal
Tel. + 49 (0) 7251 79253 (Monday - Friday)
Mail: thomas.adam@bruchsal.de
 
For more information, opening times and prices:

www.schloss-bruchsal.de

The Church of St. Peter

The Church of St. Peter is especially important to the people of Bruchsal. Not only is it the work of the famous Baroque architect, Balthasar Neumann, but it was also the only church in Bruchsal to survive the Allied bombing of the town in March 1945 unscathed. The church as it stands now is over 250 years old. Intended as a parish church and as a final resting place for the Prince Bishops, it is built in the shape of a Greek cross, meaning that the nave and transept are both 50 metres long.

Outside the church age, the Church can only occasionally be kept open: usually from Easter to mid-October on Sundays and holidays from 14:30 - 17:00 clock open. Weekdays from 9:00 to 17:00 is a view inside the Church possible from the porch of.
The tour is free, donations for the maintenance of the church are welcome.

Information &Guidance (German and English)
Tel.: 07251 5059460 + 0170 7509810
Mail: st.peter.bruchsal@gmx.de
Admission fees:
Groups to 30 persons 30,00 €, from 30 to 50 persons 50,00 €

Belvedere

The Belvedere on the edge of the "Stadtgarten" was built by Leonhard Stahl in 1756 as a hunting lodge for Prince Bishop Franz Christoph von Hutten. The location was chosen so that the lodge would command an unspoiled view of the palace, town and Rhine rift valley beyond.
 
Especially worthy of note are the two towers, each of which has a viewing platform topped with a Chinese-style baldachin – an example of the fashion for chinoiserie prevalent at that time. Today, the Belvedere is used as a venue for concerts and theatre productions.


Visitor can tour the rooms as part of guided tours of the town or by prior arrangement. Futher information is available at the tourist information office.
 
Tel.: +49 7251 50594-60
Fax: +49 7251 50594-65
E-Mail: touristinformation@btmv.de

Bergfried

        
Crossing the Bürgerpark, you can already see him -The Bergfried. This defensive tower of the old castle is 38 meters high. Today it is the town's oldest surviving structure and affords an excellent view over the roofs of Bruchsal and beyond. Here you could hear some of the stories and some of the history of the town. Standing on the top you can investigate all the sights of Bruchsal from above by yourself.
 
Visit possible in the context of guided tours or on request at the Tourist Information Bruchsal, phone 07251 5059461.

Burg Obergrombach


The Marienburg castle rises sublimely above the roofs of Obergrombach. The imposing yet picturesque limestone walls covered with tangled climbing plants bear witness to the changing fortunes of history and this old, independent town: the failed peasants' rebellion led by Joß Fritz in 1502, the 30 Years War and War of the Grand Alliance. The castle was built from around 1200 and Cardinal Damian Hugo von Schönborn, Prince Bishop of Speyer had the so-called "Lower Castle" extended for use as a summer residence in 1723.

Surrounded by a lower castle with baileys, towers, gates and the owner's residence, the upper castle with its ring wall is the centre of the complex. Today, the castle is privately owned and can only be viewed during the traditional "Burgfest", which is held in even years.

St. Michaels Chapel

Strictly speaking, St. Michael's Chapel – and therefore the district of Untergrombach – is the first thing any visitor to Bruchsal will see. Built high up on the 269 metre Michaelsberg, it stands on a spot rich in history: for the Michaelsberg gave its name to a Neolithic culture whose traces were observed and recorded here for the first time – the "Michelsberger Culture".

These remains were of a fortified hill settlement with a special wall-ditch system to protect the inhabitants against enemy attacks. And that is precisely what happened around 3500 B.C. on the Michaelsberg. But the Michaelsberg is also a naturalist's paradise with rare plants and animals from anthericum ramosum to the little blue butterfly.

A number of marked circular walks leading to wonderful beauty spots start at the chapel: discover terraces and dry-stone walls, sunken paths, terraced hillsides, orchards and meadows. The colours of the chalk grassland are enchanting all year round.
Although it was built many centuries later, the builders of the chapel may, after all, have held a memory of the hill's heathen past. Michaelis Archangeli was the name of the first chapel on this spot recorded in writing in the year 1346. It was dedicated to the Archangel Gabriel in order to protect the population against dragons. The chapel was built in its current form between 1742 and 1744 by Cardinal Damian Hugo von Schönborn, Prince Bishop of Speyer. And the breathtaking view from the Michaelsberg over the Rhine rift valley to the Pfalz mountains is probably not the only reason it has become popular for weddings.

The "Graf-Kuno-Museum"

Bruchsal is famous for the smallest museum in Baden-Württemberg. The former vineyard cottage on Andreasstaffel is now the home of the Graf Kuno Museum high above the rooftops of the town.

It’s true that the museum is quite small. Originally used as a vineyard cottage by the local baker, Rössler, it is now the home of a museum of clownery, dedicated to Graf (Count) Kuno of the Kraichgau Land – the man who became famous for his unquenchable thirst. The museum houses a range of tongue-in-cheek exhibits showing the fictitious Count – now the figurehead of the Bruchsal Carnival – who had been created by Otto Oppenheimer. One major reason why the Count has such a special place in the history of Bruchsal is a song by Oppenheimer that was dedicated to Graf Kuno: “Brusler Dorscht” (Thirsty in Bruchsal).

The museum belongs to the town’s Carnival society, GroKaGe Bruchsal, and is open on request and also every second Sunday of the month, from 13:00 to 15:00 hrs.

With a bit of luck you might even be shown around the museum by the Count, Graf Kuno, himself. Another way to catch a glimpse of the museum is to join a guided tour of the town.
Phone: +49 (0)7251 301213

First German Kindergarten Museum

The first German Kindergarten Museum features countless exhibits detailing the history of the kindergarten and pre-school education in Germany covering an area of 200 m². All the items on display have actually been used in kindergartens at one time or another and provide insights into the development of kindergarten administration, sanitation, furniture and toys.
 
Among other things, these include photographs – the oldest dating from 1896 – hand-written song texts, toys ancient and modern as well as books, books and more books.

Exhibits also include materials used by the pioneering kindergarten educationalists Friedrich Fröbel and Maria Montessori. In addition, there are many interesting educational artefacts.
 
Old musical instruments and songbooks underline the fact that music is one of the first subjects taught in kindergarten education and there is one special corner devoted to religious education containing bibles, prayer books and guardian angels.

Opening:
last Saturday of the month, 13 - 17 o'clock and on request.
Contact:
Fachschule für Sozialpädagogik Sancta Maria
Hochstr. 6
76646 Bruchsal
Tel. 07251/93250
E-Mail: info@fsp-sanctamaria.de

Fruit Museum

On extended Mozartweg (Kleiner Heubühl open field, adjacent to Bruchsal’s northern residential area), freely accessible, we find the Streuobstmuseum (scattered fruit-tree museum), opened in 1995, with 45 standard fruit-bearing trees typical of the region. Visitors receive information on these mostly forgotten, “old” varieties and their origin, preferred locations, growth conditions and use on  information panels.
 
In the teaching hut, only opened for events, we can also find an exhibition on scattered fruit trees.
Another part of the Streuobstmuseum is the 1.5 are Bauerngarten (cottage garden) with spices, medicinal and crop plants that originated in the rural culture of the cloister gardens of the past, when self-cultivated herbs were of huge importance since they were also used to cure diseases. The above-mentioned plants aside, vegetables and indigenous garden flowers can also be found here.

In spring and summer in particular, the sunflowers, tulips, common foxgloves, monk’s hoods and lavenders’ colours are of exceptional beauty. This cottage garden can thus give visitors ideas on how to design and manage their own gardens.

You can get more information from the City of Bruchsal’s environmental protection/rural conservation department, Mr Pötzsch, phone +49 (0)7251/79-482, fax +49 (0)7251 79-485, e-mail: leif.poetzsch@bruchsal.de

Local history collection in Büchenau

A private collection of local arts and crafts historical objects allows in the old school of Büchenau the establishment of a "local history collection."

The involved working group “History in Büchenau” opened the “Heimatstube” in 2015.  

The working group has renovated the space in loving detail and designed. The range of exhibits in the collection spans many areas of the former life in Büchenau. Old culture techniques from agriculture, household and professional uses are shown.

Local history Museum Heidelsheim

The old town gate rises in the centre of the district of Heidelsheim. It is the boundary between the old town and the newer outskirts to the west and its tower is home to the Heidelsheim Local History Museum. Lanterns from various ages hang from the ceilings, including that of the night-watchman.
The museum also records the history of agriculture in the area. Rare exhibits include the small wooden fruit press and the small cider press, which were used to press sweet fruit must for the children for Christmas. The middle storey in the tower has displays of the old trades plied in Heidelsheim, including local pottery, wooden potters' wheels and a honey extractor.

Local History Museum
Merianstraße 9, 76646 Bruchsal-Heidelsheim
Opening:
March til October 2 and 4 Sunday of the month, 14 bis 17 h.
Guided Tours: Tel. 07257 6443

Local history Museum Untergrombach

The Untergrombach Local History Museum is housed in the Firstständerbau, a half-timbered house dating from 1428. The museum chronicles the history of life, living and ownership in the town – through grandmother's kitchen and many other exhibitions of domestic life in years gone by. Other exhibits document village and church life. There are also important features on finds from the Neolithic "Michelsberger Culture" around 4200-3500 B.C., the life and achievements of the peasants' leader Joß Fritz (1460-1525) and finally the equipment from the old cigar factory.
 
Local Histoy Museum
Obergrombacher Str. 32
76646 Bruchsal-Untergrombach
Opening: 1 Sunday of the month 14 - 16 h
Guided Tours: Tel: +49 (0)7257 930090

Baroque Palace Bruchsal

Baroque Palace Bruchsal, Foto M. Heintzen

The Castle of  Bruchsal is one of the most beautiful Baroque palaces in Germany and the only episcopal Baroque residence on the Upper Rhine. The foundation stone was laid in 1722 by Cardinal Damian Hugo von Schönborn, Prince Bishop of Speyer, who made the palace the centre of his absolutist dominion.

In 2017 this “Palace of the Year” is being celebrated in style again. The main floor of the palace is being transformed like a butterfly, regaining the former glory of its state rooms with stucco, parquet and silk wall coverings. In the period after World War II the former apartments of the Prince Bishops had been converted into large modern exhibition halls.
Recently, however, the sequence of rooms on the main floor has been restored to their original arrangement of the years between the 18th century and their destruction in 1945.

We invite you to a tour of the most important sights and prettiest corners of the Baroque town. We start with 50 impressive buildings and a wonderful palace garden – Schloss Bruchsal palace, which was completed in 1760. But that is not all the town has to offer. Baroque, historism and art nouveau meet in hidden corners, which can only be viewed on a guided town walk.

For more information, opening times and prices:
www.schloss-bruchsal.de

Baroque Palace Bruchsal (Geoportal/Stadtplan)

St. Michaels Chapel Obergrombach
Country Court