In this Blog post we continue our exploration tour of some very special places in Germany.
#Rothenburg ob der Tauber
This medieval town looks like coming out from a movie. Narrow cobble stone streets, crooked half-timbered houses, small shops and cafe´s, historic hotels and restaurants all surrounded by a majestic stone wall. Due to its many towers, 42 to be specific, it was often called “Fränkisches Jerusalem” (Franken is the name of the Bavarian region, where Rothenburg is located). This little city became the embodiment of a typical German town and is therefore visited every year by thousand of foreign tourists. Especially Chinese, Japanese and Americans have discovered Rothenburg as their place to see.
But for all the others Rothenburg is also worth a visit. There are plenty of nice hotels to choose from, a lot of them located in historic buildings within the city wall. We stayed at the Burg Gartenpalais (www.burggartenpalais.de). It is a family owned hotel located in one of the oldest residential buildings of the town. A castle like ambiance will await you flanked with special antique details. Rooms are partially renovated, but in anyway very cosy.
On a walk through this medieval city you will find in every corner some hidden secrets. Have a first glimpse of the city with the slide show below.....
Best to start your exploration tour at the picturesque Burggarten from where you will also have a fantastic view onto the city and the valley beneath.
The St. Jakob cathedral welcomes every year hundreds of pilgrims on their way to Santiago di Compostela in Spain. The Tilman Riemenschneider Altar inside the church is magnificent.
Don´t miss to climb the stairs of the historic town wall – it´s quite unique that this structure still remained and is walkable in its full length. Infoboards along the way will give you insights of the long history of this town.
Käthe Wohlfahrt – is for sure the most famous attraction of Rothenburg. What started as a small Christmas store is now a huge Christmas Village split into two houses. It attracts huge crowds every year and even if all the Christmas glamour is not your thing, you should have at least a quick look in this Disney like place www.kaethe-wohlfahrt.com
Alt-Rothenburger Handwerkerhaus (www.alt-rothenburger-handwerkerhaus.de) is a tiny museum located in a historic building that has housed various generations of craftmen. You can see their original rooms, house utils and tools.
Mittelalterliches Kriminalmuseum (www.kriminalmuseum.eu) is the place where it gets scary. Here you can learn all about the medieval legal system inclusive of all cruel torture methods. Nothing for the fainthearted. Witches, robbers, murderers and hangmen come all alive.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber does satisfy your culinary needs of course as well. You have many traditional restaurants housed in century old buildings. Apparently they are all a bit touristic in some way, however with a great ambiance and very good food as well. My recommendation would be the Mittelalterliche Trinkstube “Zur Höll” (www.hoell-rothenburg.de), Reichsküchenmeister (www.hotel-reichsküchenmeister-rothenburg.de) or the Altfränkische Weinstube (www.altfraenkische.de).
For a more modern twist amidst a lovely decoration try the Cafe Einzigartig (www.cafe-einzigartig-rothenburg.de) for healthy breakfasts and lunches plus divine cakes and sweets.
Rothenburgs most famous speciality however are the “Schneebälle” (snowballs) – a sweet artwork made of shortcrust pastry. You can enjoy them plain, with powdered sugar or dipped in chocolate or various other covers. They are sold in many cafes and bakeries all over the city.
For further sweet delights I have discovered a very cute Chocolatier, where you can indulge in hand-made chocolates and other treats @ Allegra Schokolade www.allegra-schokolade.de
If you are more from the salty side then Rothenburg has also some real good sausage producers in town like the Metzgerei Trumpp (sounds familiar 😊 watch out it has 2 "p" at the end!) www.metzgerei-trumpp.de
Last but not least I want to recommend you a real nice guided tour. Usually I am not a great fan of guided tours as I prefer to explore the places on my own. But the Nachtwächter Tour (Night Watch Tour) is real fun and the medieval town is just the perfect setting for such a tour (www.nightwatchman.de)
After all the sightseeing it is time to relax and there is no better place than the….
This lovely eco-friendly hotel located in a historic manor house is set against a scenic mountain panorama backdrop. Ideally located between the bustling city of Munich and the picturesque Alps, just 5 minutes away from one of the most popular lakes of Bavaria – the Starnberger See.
Guest rooms are divided into the main and a side building. All decorated individually in a modern and eco-friendly style. Each room offers a high level of living and sleeping comfort, where all aspects of sustainability were integrated.
For your open-air relaxation you have plenty of space in the huge hotel garden inclusive of a natural swimming pond. If you want to take your relaxation to a higher level book yourself in one of the fantastic treatments that the professional Hotel Spa (Vitalzentrum) is offering.
The hotel restaurant will look after your wellbeing with healthy, organic and regional food. A lot of the vegetables that are landing on your plate are straight from the hotel-owned market garden just beside the property. Before you leave don´t forget to take some of the fresh produce with you. They are for sale even for non-hotel guests.
We enjoyed a dinner on the lovely outdoor terrace overlooking the lake. The 3-course menu was simply delicious. During summer time the hotel offers a weekly BBQ night in their farmers barn as well.
Breakfast is great with many options on the buffet and additional items served to your table.
A further big plus during summer time is the private lake-side garden with sunbeds, just a 5-minute walk away from the hotel. For those of you who know the Starnberger See, will agree that this is pure luxury as in the peak season all the public swimming places around the lake are overcrowded or privately owned and therefore not accessible.
There are also many nice walking options around the hotel the shortest to the nearby church or the village of Oberambach.
For further activities you can rent a bike from the hotel for a tour around the lake or get your hiking shoes on for a trail in the nearby mountains.
Many villages around the Starnberger See are worth the visit and you will find many restaurants and shopping options there. My personal recommendations for a lunch or dinner away from the hotel would be the Forsthaus Ilkahöhe (www.restaurant-ilkahoehe.de) inclusive of fantastic views on the mountain panorama. You have the choice between a laid back beergarden or a more formal restaurant.
Another of my lake favourite’s is the Midgardhaus (www.midgardhaus.de) serving excellent food directly at the lake side.
And of course a splash into the lake is the ultimate-must do while residing at the Starnberger See.
Summer we are ready for you to come!
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For further travel inspirations within Germany I can recommend you one of my favorite Travelblogs on www.wetraveltheworld.de