Nurburgring vs Nuremberg Track – Don’t go to the wrong place!

Alex Gassman

by Alex Gassman

Nurburgring to Nuremberg sign

Planning a trip to Nuremberg to drive that German race track your mates have told you about called the Nurembergring? Well stop right there, the Nurembergring does not exist! Another person almost fallen victim to the Nurburgring vs Nuremberg track mistake.

The Nurburgring, however, does exist, is located in the village of Nurburg and is where you want to be.

Confusing? Read on…

Contents

The Nurembergring does not exist!

The Nurembergring does not exist. Neither does the Nuremberg track or the Nuremberg test track you might think you’ve heard of. 

If you’re a petrolhead and you’ve seen or read about the 13 mile long race track in Germany where you can pay 30 Euros for a single lap on a long, difficult and dangerous race track then you want the Nurburgring. Specifially the Nurburgring Nordschleife, or the Green Hell as it is affectionately named.

A Honda Civic Type-R, Renault Clio 197, Peugeot 306 GTi6 and 205 GTi park infront of the Nurburgring sign

Whilst the Nurburgring is definitely not in Nuremberg, there is actually another circuit in Nuremberg. The Nuremberg track is called the Norisring, located right in the city centre of Nuremberg. 

It’s a temporary street circuit staged on closed public roads that is setup once a year to host the DTM race weekend as its pinnacle event. This track is only 1.5 miles long and it’s relatively simple (2 hairpins, 2 ninety-degree corners and a couple of straights) compared to the actual Nurburgring. Check out the circuit map and interactive Google Maps route below.

Circuit map of the Norisring track in Nuremberg

Despite it’s simplicity it is always guaranteed to provide some serious racing action thanks to its tightness and the unforgiving armco barriers and concrete walls that line both sides of the circuit. It has been likened to Monaco, for its lack of run-off and how close the fans can get to the action. 

But the Norisring is not available for the public to drive on, and it is only setup for a few weeks each year. So if you go to Nuremberg looking to get your own driving kicks, then you’ll be sorely disappointed.

Nuremberg to Nurburgring

Should you make the mistake of ending up in the wrong place and you want to go from Nuremberg to the Nurburgring, how long is going to take you to get there? 

The below screengrab from Google Maps says the most direct route is 390km, or just under 250 miles, and will take around 4 hours.

Bear in mind that Google planned that route for us at a time of little traffic. As you can see you have to pass through the outskirts of Frankfurt so chances are there will be some congestion to slow you down. 

There are, thankfully, a number of derestricted autobahns on the route but it’s still going to be an annoyingly long journey.

Calais to the Nurburgring (correct)

A pretty obvious clue that you’ve got the Nurburgring vs Nuremberg distinction wrong is when you put your destination in the Satnav. I

f you get to mainlaind Europe from the UK via a ferry which docks in Calais and you correctly put the Nurburgring in Google maps, you should see a journey time of somewhere around 4.5 to 5 hours.

Calais to Nuremberg (wrong!)

It’s a different story if you depart the ferry in Calais and incorrectly tell Google to aim you at Nuremberg, however. Google maps will give you a route which is a little closer to 8 hours, 800km or 500 miles. 

So not only will the drive from Nuremberg to Nurburgring cost you 4 hours of your life, getting to Nuremberg from the west in the first place will be another 3 hours wasted.

The Nurburgring

If you want to drive the most challenging race track in the world, then the Nurburgring is where you need to go.

Situated in and around the village of Nurburg, looping around the Nurburg castle, this 13 mile track will take a first-timer over 10 minutes to complete a single lap. Lap tickets will cost between 25 and 30 Euros, depending on which day of the week you go, and can be purchased online in advance or at the ticket office in the car park.

CLio 197 at the Nurburgring

Being the most challenging circuit in the world, however, means it comes with its own risks. Start by reading our post on Nurburgring Liability and Insurance. In the event of a crash the financial liability you may face if you have caused an accident is horrifying and you should be fully aware of this before you go. 

Options to reduce this risk involve doing a Nurburgring track day, or looking at hiring a track prepared Nurburgring rental car from one of the local companies.

Summary

Let’s summarise this whole Nurburgring or Nuremberg thing. If you want to go and pay your money to drive some laps of the Green Hell, the 13 mile-long world famous race track that’s the most difficult, challenging and exhilarating in the whole world then check out the below quick guide to Nurburgring vs Nuremberg:

Correct (go here):

  • Nurburg – a town in the Eifel mountains, home of the race circuit you want to drive
  • Nurburgring – The circuit complex consisting of the 13 mile Nordschleife circuit and the shorter Grand Prix track
  • Nordschleife – The 13 mile long circuit you want to drive

Incorrect (don’t go here!):

  • Nuremberg – a city in Bavaria that is 250 miles away from where you want to be
  • Nurembergring – doesn’t exist! A made-up race track confused with the real deal
  • Norisring – the street circuit used once a year in Nuremberg for the DTM races
  • Nürnberg – the German name for the city of Nuremberg
  • Nurnberg – doesn’t actually exist, incorrectly spelt version of Nürnberg, but will show on Google maps as Nuremberg

Alex Gassman

I‘m Alex. I write F1 and motorsport travel guides based on my experience as racing driver and full-time motorsport nerd. I’ve traveled the world watching F1 and other racing series.

I started oversteer48 with the aim of helping other motorsport fans who are planning on watching some racing themselves.

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