Erfurt is a small city in the region of Thuringia in central Germany. It was founded as a Catholic diocese in 742 and flourished in the Middle Ages thanks to the woad plant, the source of valuable blue dye. Today, Erfurt is a bustling town of 200,000 with an abundance of churches (36 churches plus 15 monasteries and other ecclesiastical buildings, to be exact).
Erfurt's many churches, chapels and monasteries have earned the city the nickname "Thuringian Rome." And Erfurt is especially famous for playing a significant role in the life of Martin Luther. In the 16th century, Luther spent six years in Erfurt, first studying at the University of Erfurt then living as a monk in the Augustinian Monastery.
In addition to all these great religious sites, Erfurt boasts a lovely medieval city center, the oldest inhabited bridge in Europe (the Krämerbrucke) and a charming Christmas market. It is no surprise, then, that Erfurt is becoming an increasingly popular tourist destination for Germans and non-Germans alike. Yet Erfurt is still much less "touristy" than more famous German cities, so it's a bit quieter and accommodations tend to be more reasonably priced.