Nikolaikirche (St. Nicholas Church), Leipzig

Nikolaikirche (St. Nicholas Church), Leipzig (must see)

One of the most important churches of Leipzig is named for St Nicholas, the patron saint of travelers and merchants. The church started in 1185 as a Romanesque-style edifice with two look-alike towers. It was enlarged and redone in the 16th century in the Gothic "hall church" style, which features a nave and aisles of approximately equal height, united under a single immense roof. The Baroque-style central tower was added in 1730.

The interior was remodeled in 1797, in a Neoclassical style, by architect Johann Carl Friedrich Dauthe. Inside, the apse is semicircular with a barrel vault roof. The narrow nave is supported by graceful Egyptian-style columns, with palm-shaped capitals. The interior colors are in two pastel shades of pale green and dusty rose.

The church hosted four of the five premier performances of Johann Sebastian Bach's Passion of St. John in 1724, 1728, 1732, and 1749. Several of his cantatas and oratorios were performed by the St. Thomas Choir of Leipzig (Thomanerchor), a boy's choir with a tradition of more than 800 years in music and city history.

From 1989 to 1991, people would gather at St. Nicholas every Monday evening. The meetings were not formal. They led to ad hoc protests against the Communist East German Government. Cabaret artist Bernd-Lutz Lange declared of the revolution: "The head was the St. Nicholas Church and the body the center of the city."

The authorities were thrown off balance, as they were expecting violence. But that never occurred, violance were not in the playbook. A monumental column stands outside the church today. Close to the Neoclassical column, colored panels in the pavement light up after dark, telling the story of the Monday night marchers.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Leipzig. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for IOS   Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for Android

Nikolaikirche (St. Nicholas Church) on Map

Sight Name: Nikolaikirche (St. Nicholas Church)
Sight Location: Leipzig, Germany (See walking tours in Leipzig)
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Leipzig, Germany

Create Your Own Walk in Leipzig

Create Your Own Walk in Leipzig

Creating your own self-guided walk in Leipzig is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
A Walk on the Leipzig Music Trail

A Walk on the Leipzig Music Trail

The spatial density of historic locations associated with music in Leipzig is truly mind-boggling. But then again, this is hardly surprising, given the eclectic score of musicians who had left their mark on the city in various years.

Indeed, it was in Leipzig that Johann Sebastian Bach served as an organist and choirmaster at Thomaskirche as well as a cantor at Nikolaikirche; composer Robert...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.2 Km or 2 Miles
Leipzig Introduction Walking Tour

Leipzig Introduction Walking Tour

The name "Leipzig" may be derived from the Slavic word "Lipsk", meaning "linden trees place." The Nazi government renamed the city "Reichsmessestadt Leipzig" ("Reich Fair Trade City Leipzig"). In 1989, with the fall of communism, the city was "Hero City" - in recognition of the role that the Monday demonstrations there played in the fall...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.4 Km or 1.5 Miles
Leipzig Architectural Jewels

Leipzig Architectural Jewels

Anyone who wants to delve into Leipzig's interesting history should see its collection of one of the most beautiful Renaissance buildings in Germany. The city has many impressive historic monuments and contemporary constructions by world famous architects. Take this self-guided walking tour to discover Leipzig’s most amazing architecture.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.9 Km or 0.6 Miles