Regional Overview

Medieval Landscapes

Eastphalia, was as the name suggests, the Eastern counterpart to Westphalia. It formed the heartland of the Saxon lands and was the Imperial domain of the Ottonian Empire in the 10th century. The Ottonian Emperors built castles and cities throughout the region, though the defining event for the region was the destruction of the Thirty Years War some 600 years later. Eastphalia offers the richest medieval heritage in Germany to have survived the centuries.

Regional Identity

What to Lookout For

  • Cities and palaces founded by the Saxon Emperors of the Ottonian Dynasty. These tended to become wealthy in successive centuries and remain highlights, e.g. Goslar, Halberstadt, Quedlinburg.
  • Architecture of the Reformation, typically in the form of churches and Renaissance motifs, e.g. in Halle, Clausthal or Eisleben.
  • The architectural innovation of the High Medieval Period and the transition from Romanesque to Gothic, e.g. Magdeburg, Naumburg, Merseburg and Halberstadt.




Justin Bunch | CityscapeTravel My suggested travel destinations with the top three destinations highlighted.

What is Eastphalia?

Eastphalia in its original form also included Lower-Saxony, much of Thuringia and Anhalt. As with Westphalia, the region shrank over time, without ever receiving any political de-jure recognition.

The region was the home to the Ottonian Emperors. Otto I, or Otto the Great was the founder of the Holy Roman Empire in 969 ce in the form that we recognize it. By integrating Bohemia and much of Middle-Francia into a single state he offered a direct continuation of the Carolingian legacy. He, as his successors, struggled to modernize the still tribal institutions that formed the core of the Early Medieval state. As a result, he did not have a capital city, and his court traveled around the Empire, constructing palaces and cities as he went. Eastphalia was the center of his Empire.

With the rise of the Salian Dynasty in 1027, the center of power moved to the Rhineland, where it would stay for 500 years. Eastphalia lost political relevance and was split up into numerous minor states, city-states, and ecclesiastical authorities. The most powerful state was the Prince-Archbishop of Magdeburg, who rule the entire eastern half of the region.

My Subjective Travel Rankings

To understand where the categories come from, see this article here.

7.6 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Accommodation: 6
  • Transportation: 8
  • Volume/Capacity: 10
  • Infrastructure: 6
  • Interactivity: 8

8.3 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Context: 7
  • Monuments: 10
  • Quality: 8

7 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Abstraction: 10
  • Tradition: 4



Saxony today is a diverse land focused on the families that emerged from the collapse of the Saxon tribal duchy in the early Middle Ages.

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