Looking at the map of Bremen the fact that it was once a medieval port jumps out quite strongly, as the old city moat has remained largely preserved, and lies in the middle of a city park. Bremen was part of the medieval Hanseatic League (I have learned that in North Germany you can't escape this word) and as such became quite prosperous, and asserted itself as an independent city-state throughout almost its entire existence
The day we landed in Bremen was coincidentally the day of the Haake Beck (local brew/brand put out by the Beck's brewery) Regatta. We caught Bremen on the day of this momentous event where brave souls compete to doggy-paddle up the Weser on inner tubes to claim victory over the other competitors. The prize? Guess.
And no trip to Bremen would be complete without visiting (and groping at) the Bremen Town Musicians. These guys are from a Grimm's Fairy Tale that unfortunately everyone there but myself seemed roughly familiar with. All the same, they're cool guys. I'd sit down for a Beck's with them anytime.