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12 January 2023 - Jann Raveling

Where is Bremen the Number 1?

Success stories

Outstanding achievements from the Hanseatic city

Bicycles in Bremen
If you say Bremen, you also have to say bicycle - Bremen is one of Germany's largest cycling cities. © WFB/Ginter

Robot football, exports, fishfingers and sun dials – did you know Bremen is the Number 1 for all these things? It's major achievements like this, and more modest ones, that make this Federal State so well known.

Our Top 9 - "The Best of the Federal State of Bremen"

1. Unbeatable when it comes to robot football

Doesn't winning all the time gets just a little bit boring? You could ask this question either Bayern München or B-Human, Bremen's robot football team. The team has already won the RoboCup Standard Platform League world championship nine times. Students and researchers at the University of Bremen and the German Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) have been working on constantly improving their sophisticated artificial intelligence systems for a number of years. Their success also highlights the strength of the AI sector in Bremen, a city whose prestigious institutes and burgeoning industry are known all around the world.

2. Exports from the River Weser

Bremen's traditions as a port go back hundreds of years. And today, it still has higher export figures than any other German Federal State. This means that the value of exports compared to gross domestic product is especially high or, more simply: many companies in Bremen earn their living by exporting goods. For this we have to thank our vigorous logistics sector, which has excellent connections to Europe's trading routes, and also our proximity to Bremerhaven, one of the four major container ports in Northern Europe.

3. Winner's podium for the Cargo Distribution Centre

And, appropriately enough, there's yet another number 1: The GVZ Cargo Distribution Centre in Bremen. Cargo distribution centres (in German, "GVZs") are industrial areas which are specifically designed with logistics in mind. There, goods are unloaded, reloaded, put into new consignments, stored and transported away. For freight forwarders and the transport sector, these are vital hubs for handling goods. The GVZ Cargo Distribution Centre in Bremen is acknowledged as the best of its kind in Europe according to a study by the GVZ-Gesellschaft mbH (German association of Cargo Distribution Centres).

4. Green and pleasant

In Bremen, you're never far away from nature. Bremen is renowned as Germany's greenest large city – meaning it has the greatest ratio of green space to citizens in Germany. And everyone who lives here knows how to enjoy it to the full. For example, by taking long strolls around the 200 hectares of the Bürgerpark.

5. On your bike!

When exploring these green expanses, Bremen's inhabitants often take to two wheels. Bremen has more cyclists than any other major German city. Around a quarter of all its routes are dedicated to bicycles. Bremeninvest is a keen supporter of this cycling life, as evidenced by its BIKE IT! programme.

6. Überseestadt: a giant near the Weser

Since 2000, Bremen's New Harbour District (Überseestadt) has developed rapidly into the place to live, work and play. Extending over 300 hectares, it is one of Europe's largest urban redevelopment projects and also one of the most ambitious port regeneration initiatives – with an area greater than that of Hamburg's HafenCity. The most eye-catching features of this new city district are to be found in the sympathetic combinations of old industrial structures, modernised harbourside architecture and new buildings which provide a mixed-use environment of dwellings, workspaces and recreational areas.

7. Fishfingers as far as the eye can see

The city of Bremerhaven sits at the mouth of the River Weser, around 60 kilometres north of Bremen. In addition to its international importance for logistics and port industries, the city is also renowned for its food and beverage businesses. At its core is fish processing and, in particular, fish fingers. Every year, more than 2,5 billion of them are produced here, making Bremerhaven the fish fingers capital of the world! Also worth noting: Bremen lies on the German Fisch-Genuss-Route (culinary trail for fish fans) – specially created for people who know there is more to fish than its fingers.

8. Good wines in the Ratskeller

Wine, especially white wine, goes so well with fish! Connoisseurs will find just the thing they want in the Ratskeller vaults below Bremen's Town Hall. These cellars are home to the largest collection of German wines world-wide, including the world's oldest wine in casks, which has been stored here since 1653. And it's still drinkable, ever if only very few people are ever allowed to enjoy a drop.

9. City of sun dials

Yes, there's even a record for sun dials. Bremen has the greatest density of stationary sun dials anywhere: there are said to be more than 125 of them, despite Northern Germany's famously foul weather. The reason for this is rooted in the city's maritime tradition: captains and ship owners needed to know the time, and merchants had enough money to decorate their houses with these chronometers.

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