The Moritzbastei is a gem of a Student union bar, there is probably nowhere more Goth than this place
at night during WGT. It’s quite central and can be found at the base of the single Skyscraper that you
can see from anywhere in the city. Its pretty non-descript from ground level, although there is a
medieval market on the level above it during the festival (day times), its worth checking out for the
weird wines, and you can buy your german ankle bells here (should you want to be hung, drawn and
The Moritzbastei is the only remaining part of the ancient city fortifications, it was commissioned by
Elector Moritz of Saxony in the 16th century and later named after him. Originally called the
'Petersbastei' it is erected on the site where the Hangman’s Tower had stood. During the Napoleonic
Wars the Moritzbastei’s cellars were used to house wounded Russian Soldiers, it has also been used as
a warehouse for trading goods and as a place of work for bell-founders, printers and other tradesmen.
It was also the site of Leipzig’s first Free School. It survived 400 tumultuous years during which it was
used in many different ways, only to end as part of the rubble of the Second World War.
After the War the site on which the Moritzbastei once stood there was only a mound of rubble, covered in trees and bushes. Although
occasionally suggestions are made regarding the redevelopment of the area, it was not until 1974 that students from the University of Leipzig started the redevelopment, taking 150,000 hours to clear 40,000m³ of rubble from East Germanys largest unofficial building site. After freeing it of the debris it was turned into a students’ club, which opened in 1982 then after 10 years and the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Moritzbastei opened its doors to all visitors interested in culture.
The Moritzbastei is open all day, serving food and drink from Breakfast right around the clock to the very early hours of the morning. Service exists during the day and they will come to you. However be prepared for a wait as the place can get busy around lunchtime's. Its a good place to meet and chat (if you can find each other). The inside upstairs is only open at night from 11pmish.
From the evening onwards there is a barbecue at the top of the stairs leading down to the Moritzbastei and the Bratwurst are excellent, one is never enough. Be careful if you’re pissed when walking down the stairs, they are quite steep and dangerous if they are wet.
You will need your WGT wristband (or pay about €5). You have now entered the TARDIS (Dr WHO) that is also the Moritzbastei. (WARNING, Keep everybody in your group together until you know where you are going, if you get lost down here you will have no hope of finding each other again). At the base of the stairs you will be in a small courtyard, there are seats here. Walk forward and you will hear music coming from the doorway in front of you, (if you can’t hear music then it must be day light, just head to the most obvious doorway just over from the bottom of the stairs). Go through this doorway (remember this spot) you will find the toilets to the Right and the cloakroom. Going back to the remembered spot and facing the dance floor you can turn left, here you will find wonderful food, a huge queue of Goths waiting for food and a few seats. Beer can be purchased here too. If you pass through the eating area you will find yourself in a long room with seats and tables, to the left you will go back towards the courtyard you started in, if you go right you will find that the room again parts left and right (in front of you should be a doorway to another courtyard). Going left here you will find a bar to your right, another long room leading left ending in a cocktail bar and the first courtyard. Back right you will find another doorway and another bar, to the left of this area leads down to another dance floor (are you lost yet? Hehe). Right remember this spot too. Go back to the first time I told you to remember a spot by the toilets just off the courtyard, here you will see a stairway going up; it may have an iron gate across it, between 10-11pm it will open. Go up the stairs (there are more toilets here), go up again and follow it till you enter the best looking Goth Cavern that you will ever see, it has multiple rooms leading off of it, stalls and a couple of bars. There is the main dance floor at the bottom of the stairs. Go across the dance floor or take the route along the bar to the left, it leads to more rooms and stairs, if you follow the cavern further it will lead up some stairs then back down some stairs…here you will find another dance floor (NOTE, you have come full circle this is the second place I asked you to remember, from the other end of the second dance floor)…
It really is a maze of bars and dance floors. The Nightclub is on every night of the festival and it gets very crowded but upstairs is one of the secrets that many (even the regulars) don’t know about, explore and enjoy (however it does get very full, expect it to be wall to wall people every night, esp the last night). The DJs change every night, look to the festival schedule for more information, however you will find that each night will be different, one night will be Trad, the next medieval, EBM etc, its open till the early hours every day.