Rothenburg - True Medieval City

Trip Start Nov 02, 2010
Trip End Jan 15, 2011

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Where I stayed
Pension Elke Rothenburg ob der Tauber
Read my review - 4/5 stars

Flag of Germany  , Bavaria,
Saturday, November 27, 2010

My parents are still in town and want to go see Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber, a city that Mike and I have never heard of - so we went.  We weren't expecting much because - how great could it be if we've been here for months and have never even heard of it.  Germany's not THAT big.  We were wrong.  It is by far one of our favorite places that we've visited yet.  

Rothenburg is truly a medieval city.  Not a replica of one - the real thing.  It was Germany's largest city in the Middle Ages and suffered greatly during the 30 Years War.  They were plundered and ransacked into poverty.  Because they had no money to remodel and rebuild, their city was never modernized throughout the years.  The wall around the city has been repaired in some places but is mostly as it was in the 1400's!  Miraculously, the city never really caught on fire - which seems to be the end of most cities/castles/etc around here.  It was also completely spared during WWII despite Nazi forces hiding out there.  We went on the "Nightwatchman Tour" (if you ever end up here, this cannot be missed) given every night by a local man who assumes the character of The Nightwatchman.  He's basically a German Jerry Seinfeld.  We laughed the whole hour and a half and actually learned things, too.  He told us that during WWII, the American in charge of the military surrounding Rothenburg had actually grown up with a painting of Rothenburg in his living room.  His mother had visited when she was young and told him all about how beautiful and historically significant it was to the world.  He had never been able to visit himself, and convinced the Nazis to come out so he didn't have to destroy the city.  The Nightwatchman obviously told it way better than I do.

Rothenburg is also home to the Kathe Wohlfarht store.  This is the epicenter of Christmas decorations.  There are 3 stores on the same street....and more Japanese tourists than you could ever expect to see in the middle of nowhere Germany.  I had no idea how much the Japanese love Christmas stuff!  We did our duty as tourists and bought some beautiful ornaments for our tree.  Not that we have a tree, because we live in a hotel, but maybe for a future tree someday.  In keeping with the schedule, we also had to visit the Christmas Market.  Mike is up to 6 commemorative Gluwein mugs...

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sarah on

I loved that place!! Did you guys walk up the clock tower in the middle of the market? Great View!

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