Herzogliches Museum

Erfurt, Weimar & Thuringia

The handsome neo-Renaissance building to the south of the Schloss Friedenstein now houses many of the artistic and historical treasures amassed by the Dukes of Saxe-Gotha over the centuries. You'll find scant competition for a good view of priceless works by Old Masters including Rubens, Van Goyen and Cranach the Elder, while the anonymously painted Gothaer Liebespaar ('Gotha lovers', 1480) is a luminous treasure that shouldn't be missed. The outstanding sculpture collection includes works by Houdon and de Vries.

Also not to be missed is Conrad Meit's Adam und Eva, a charming early-Renaissance boxwood sculpture of the original God couple. Plus, there are Egyptian, Chinese and Japanese antiquities and fine collections of Meissen porcelain and Italian Maiolica for ceramic fans. Entry is included with the Friedenstein-Karte, the combined ticket for the museums within the adjacent Schloss.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Erfurt, Weimar & Thuringia attractions

1. Schloss Friedenstein


This horseshoe-shaped palace, surviving in exemplary condition as the largest early baroque palace in Germany, is a lavish, creaky-floored delight. Much…

2. Rathaus

0.43 MILES

Hauptmarkt is dominated by the picturesque Rathaus, with its colourful Renaissance facade and 35m-tall tower. It started out as a storage house in 1567,…

3. Burg Gleichen

7.29 MILES

The northernmost of the 'Three Like' castles that gave their name to the Drei Gleichen municipality southeast of Gotha, this 11th-century ruin used to be…

4. Mühlburg

7.54 MILES

The oldest of the three Drei Gleichen ('Three Like') castles, Mühlburg was first mentioned in 704 and possibly existed in some form as early as 319 …

5. Veste Wachsenburg


Now housing a hotel and restaurant, this well-preserved hilltop castle was originally built as a bastion against Magyar incursions in the 10th century,…

6. Egapark Erfurt

13.11 MILES

It’s easy to spend hours amid the riotous flower beds, Japanese rock garden, Schmetterlinghaus (butterfly house) and greenhouses of the rambling GDR-era…

7. Zitadelle Petersberg

13.86 MILES

Situated on the Petersberg hill northwest of Domplatz, this 36-hectare citadel ranks among Europe’s largest and best-preserved baroque fortresses. While…

8. Severikirche


The late-13th-century Severikirche – which together with the adjacent cathedral forms Efrurt's iconic architectural ensemble on Domberg (Cathedral Hill) –…