8 of the Best Factory Tours in Germany

Go behind the scenes of Germany’s most famous exports and find out how German cars, chocolate, and beer are made. Many factories in Germany open their doors to curious visitors and offer them a look on how their products are built, brewed, and sewed - from start to finish.

Before you go on a factory tour in Germany, make sure to call ahead or check their website and ask about reservations and tours in English. And don’t forget to check out the factory stores afterward for some great deals.

01 of 08

BMW Car Factory Munich

BMW factory
servickuz / Getty Images
Address
Am Olympiapark 2, 80809 München, Germany
Phone
+49 89 125016001

For BMW fans, Munich offers no less than three points of interest, all in walking distance from each other:

The BMW Museum - which traces back the history of the famous car

BMW World - an architectural masterpiece which is the delivery center for BMWs and also houses exhibition halls, design ateliers, and workshops for kids

BMW plant - offers fascinating tours: Put on your safety goggles and factory coats and watch how giant conveyors lift the 3-series BMW to be welded by computer-controlled robots.

  • Where: Petuelring 130, 80809 Munich
  • e-mail: infowelt@bmw-welt.com
02 of 08

Haribo Gummy Factory

Haribo Bonn Germany Headquarters

Eckhard Henkel/Wikimedia Commons /CC BY-SA 3.0

Address
Am Neutor 3, 53113 Bonn, Germany
Phone
+49 228 90904440

The most famous gummy bears in the world come from Germany. Haribo Goldbären (gold bears) were born in 1920 in Bonn in West Germany.

Today, Haribo is the largest manufacturer of gummy sweets on the globe. Although you can’t enter the factory itself, you can visit the Haribo factory store, close to the original factory, which features an exhibition about Haribo and offers a wonderful variety of gummy bears for sweet prices.

  •  Where: Am Neutor 3, 53113 Bonn, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
03 of 08

Erdinger Brewery Munich

Erdinger
Lennart Preiss/Bongarts/Getty Images
Address
Franz-Brombach-Straße 1, 85435 Erding, Germany
Phone
+49 8122 4090

The world's largest brewer of wheat beer is located close to Munich and combines tradition and modern technology. At the Erdinger Brewery, the purest ingredients with age-old recipes make their way through a high-tech bottling plant.

On your tour, you will watch the brewing process from start to finish, explore the fermentation and filtration cellars, visit the computer-controlled warehouse, and learn how the beer is loaded and shipped around the world. More than one million bottles leave this brewery every day, but you can enjoy your fresh Hefeweizen in the brewery's beer garden.

  • Where: Franz-Brombach-Str. 1-20, 85435 Erding
  • Telephone: 49 8122 409-421
04 of 08

Chocolate Museum Cologne

Germany, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Cologne, Exterior of the Chocolate Museum
Walter Bibikow / Getty Images
Address
Am Schokoladenmuseum 1A, 50678 Köln, Germany
Phone
+49 221 9318880

Cologne’s Chocolate Museum is home to a glass chocolate factory, where visitors of all ages can see how the coca bean turns into a chocolate bar. The machines in the small chocolate factory all have viewing windows, so you can get a detailed look at the individual production steps.

The exhibition tells you all about the rich history of chocolate, from the Mayan’s chocolate “drink of the gods” to today's commercials.  If all this talk about chocolate made your mouth water, head to the 10-feet high chocolate fountain. The museum staff will be happy to dip a stick of waffle into the warm chocolate to give you a try.

Where: Am Schokoladenmuseum 1A, 50678 Cologne

Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08

Meissen Porcelain Factory

Meissen Porcelain
World Imaging / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0
Address
Talstraße 9, 01662 Meißen, Germany
Phone
+49 3521 468332

300 years ago, Europe’s first porcelain was discovered in Meissen, close to Dresden. Today, Meissen porcelain (Staatliche Porzellan-Manufaktur Meissen) with its signature trademark, the crossed swords, is one of the most famous china manufacturers in the world.

You can tour various workshops that demonstrate the process of making the fine Meissen china by hand, from the modeling to the painting. There is also a museum, which holds a collection of 20,000 pieces from all periods, and an outlet store where you can hunt for some bargains.

06 of 08

VW Factory and Autostadt Wolfsburg

Autostadt Volkswagen
Mark Daffey / Getty Images
Address
Heinrich-Nordhoff-Straße, 38440 Wolfsburg, Germany

Once again its cars - it is Germany after all. And the Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg is just one hour away from Berlin and prides itself on being the largest auto plant in the world. There is a huge car museum, several pavilions dedicated to the various VW cars, driving courses for adults and kids, restaurants, a hotel, and of course the factory itself, which you can tour.

Another highlight: Embark on a glass elevator which takes you to the top of the 160 feet high glass Car Tower. They hold up to 800 custom-ordered cars, which are picked up by their buyers fresh from the factory.

Its adjacent “Autostadt” (car city) is a theme park dedicated to the automobile and offers everything car enthusiasts of all ages dream about.

Where: Stadtbrücke, 38440 Wolfsburg

07 of 08

Steiff Factory and Museum

Steiff-Museum Giengen
Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images
Address
Margarete-Steiff-Straße 1, 89537 Giengen an der Brenz, Germany

Kids and collectors all over the world love the German Steiff plush toys with their signature “button in ear”. Created in 1880 by the German seamstress Margarete Steiff, the plush animals are made only out of the finest materials, such as felt, mohair, or alpaca.

You can visit the birthplace of the famous toys, Giengen, 90 miles west of Munich. After stopping by the largest Steiff shop in the world, make sure to check out the interactive toy museum and the workshops where the plush toys are still created by hand.

Where: Margarete-Steiff Platz 1, 89537 Giengen an der Brenz

08 of 08

Jagermeister Factory Tour

Jagermeister tour
Alex Guibord/Flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0
Address
Jägermeister, Campestraße, 38302 Wolfenbüttel, Germany

Not just fit for Frat boys, discover the German liquor of Jagermeister with a visit to its headquarters in Wolfenbuttel (about 200 km west of Berlin).

Tours are 1.5 hour and while you won't find out all the secret ingredients (there are 56!), English or German guides take visitors through production, into the herb cellar and through a tasting.

Where: Wolfenbuettel, Germany

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8 of the Best Factory Tours in Germany