One of the most appealing attributes of Frankfurt is its manageable size; one can traverse the city in a fraction of the time it takes to do so in metropolises of a similar extent. You are also able to quickly attain your destination, including the great outdoors surrounding the city, locally known as the GrünGürtel (green belt).
One of my favorite spots in the green belt is the Alte Flugplatz, a former American military training facility, which has been converted into a café, educational, and recreational space in the north of the city. Situated in the Bonames neighborhood, the Alte Flugplatz is easily accessible by bike or car; somewhat less so by public transport. The space is particularly popular with families and bikers on warm summer weekends; children crowd the runway with all sports equipment imaginable. A few meters away, the Tower Café offers meals, alcoholic as well as non-alcoholic beverages, and the weekend staple: Kaffee und Kuchen (coffee and cake). I like to go on sunny weekends when you’ll find a mix of long-distance bikers and grandparents out with their grandchildren.
During the week, the facility, which is managed by the municipality, caters to school groups showing how nature has reclaimed this once military landscape. The concrete pavement to the northwest of the site have been broken to allow trees and shrubs to repopulate the area. Now that it’s summer, much of the renaturated area is off limits to protect the native amphibian population.