Schnoor

This maze of narrow, winding alleys was once the fishermen's quarter and later a red-light district. Today its tiny cottages house boutiques, restaurants, cafes and galleries. Though geared to tourists, Schnoor is a pretty place for a stroll (and a fun word to say out loud). Its restaurants are popular with locals in the evenings.

Marktplatz & Schlachte

Bremen’s Unesco World Heritage–protected Marktplatz is striking, especially for its ornate, gabled and sculpture-festooned Rathaus (town hall; 1410). In front stands a 5.5m-high medieval statue of the knight Roland (1404), the symbolic protector of Bremen's civic rights and freedoms. On the town hall's western side is a sculpture of the animal quartet of lore, the Town Musicians of Bremen. Hugging the nearby Weser River, Schlachte is a waterfront promenade dotted with bars and restaurants. Boats and cruises to sights on the Weser outside the centre leave from here.

Böttcherstrasse

Just steps from the Marktplatz, Böttcherstrasse was transformed into a prime example of mostly Expressionist architecture in the 1920s at the instigation of coffee merchant Ludwig Roselius. Many of its ornate red-brick facades house artisanal shops and art museums. Its most striking feature is Bernhard Hoetger's golden Lichtbringer (Bringer of Light) relief, which keeps an eye on the north entrance.

Das Viertel

The Das Viertel neighbourhood – home of the museum-laden Kulturmeile (Culture Mile) section – is a walk or short tram ride east of the centre and is one of Bremen's liveliest and most interesting areas, packed with cool shops, restaurants and bars. Head there for an entertaining evening.