Ostwestfalen attractions

Top Choice Church in Soest

St Maria zur Wiese

Close to the train station, this exquisite late-Gothic church is easily recognised by its neo-Gothic twin spires, which are undergoing restoration. One is complete and aglow with green, while the other is under wrap…
Top Choice Museum in Paderborn

Museum in der Kaiserpfalz

In the 1960s, archaeologists stumbled upon remnants of the Carolingian palace where Charlemagne met with Pope Leo III, as well as the much better preserved foundations of the 11th-century palace of Heinrich II. The …
Cathedral in Paderborn


Enter Paderborn’s massive (104m long!) Gothic Dom through the southern portal (called ‘Paradise’) adorned with delicate carved figures. Inside, turn your attention to the high altar and the pompous memorial tomb of …
Castle in Soest

Burg Altena

This fairy-tale medieval castle started out as the home of the local counts, then served military purposes under the Prussians before becoming, in 1912, the birthplace of the youth hostel movement. The world’s first…
Museum in Paderborn

Erzbischöfliches Diözesanmuseum

Outside the Dom, an incongruously modernist structure by Gottfried Böhm stands atop vestiges of a medieval bishop's palace and shelters prized church treasures from the 11th to the 20th centuries. Head to the vaulte…
Palace in Paderborn

Schloss Neuhaus

Schloss Neuhaus, a moated palace with an expansive park, once served as the residence of the Paderborn prince-bishops. A new museum inside the palace illustrates their fanciful lifestyle through a series of period r…
Church in Soest

St Maria zur Höhe

St Maria zur Höhe is a squat 13th-century hall church that's less architecturally refined than others in town. Its sombreness is brightened by beautiful ceiling frescoes, an altar ascribed to the Westphalian painter…
Museum in Paderborn

Heinz Nixdorf Museumsforum

You don’t have to be a techie to enjoy this museum, a high-tech romp through 5000 years of information technology from cuneiform to cyberspace. Established by the local founder of Nixdorf computers (since swallowed …
Church in Soest

St Patrokli

Ponder the balance and beauty of the soaring and dignified tower of St Patrokli, a three-nave 10th-century Romanesque structure partly adorned with delicate frescoes. Inside, note especially the muralled high choir …
Church in Paderborn


Paderborn's most important house of worship is also its smallest. The twee Bartholomäuskapelle was consecrated in 1017 and is considered the oldest hall church in Germany. It has otherworldly acoustics.