Rothenburg ob der Tauber
Very rarely do I fall in love with a town that attracts thousands of visitors a day. While many tourists are aware of the warnings about overcrowding, Rothenburg ob der Tauber is on their radar nonetheless. After traveling through the stone walls of the fortress, you’ll soon realize why Rothenburg ob der Tauber tourism is such a big deal. The colorful buildings and rough streets transport you back in time from the moment you begin to explore the area. The restaurants and hotels in Rothenburg ob der Tauber will entice you. All of them have their own distinctive flair. Honestly, nothing can compare to experiencing the beauty in person. I’d like to share some Rothenburg ob der Tauber tips for avoiding the crowds, as well as some fun facts about this beautiful German fairy-tale town.
From the 16th century onwards, Rothenburg was often described as the “Franconian Jerusalem” due to the spectacular skyline it possesses in itself – for good reason since the city’s skyline is marked with numerous towers. The old quarter of Rothenburg ob der Tauber is surrounded by a town wall. The city’s wall has six gates and several pedestrian entrances that lead to (or out of) the old quarter.
Tips for avoiding the Rothenburg ob der Tauber crowds
VISIT DURING THE OFF-SEASON
Traveling in the off-season such as late September-early October is a good idea. This is a great way to avoid crowds while also being able to save money. Munich at this time of year is expensive because of Oktoberfest but other parts of Germany do not get the crowds as much. The off-season can be a reasonable time to book your hotel, tour, and even food in Rothenburg ob der Tauber.
This being said, there are two high seasons in Germany. Typically, this stretch occurs during the summer, but also near the Christmas season. During the Christmas season, the town transforms into a magical winter wonderland, with a large Christmas market and decorations helping usher in the New Year.
2. STAY THE NIGHT
If you want to have an authentic experience in this magical place, you should spend the night. The reason for this is that about 90% of the thousands of tourists who come everyday do not stay for more than a few hours. Tourism in Rothenburg ob der Tauber reaches its peak in the late morning and afternoon.
Once they have left for the day, the city calms down, and it is a great time to take in and enjoy the atmosphere of the town.
The Night Watchman Tour is a must-see! English language tours are available. It is outstanding.
3. Timing is extremely important.
Please keep in mind when you are staying overnight that timing will make or break your experience in Rothenburg ob der Tauber. The feeling of the city changes once the buses and tourists depart.
The streets seem to clear, and everything at once seems quieter and more serene. That is why it is ideal to visit the Rothenburg ob der Tauber region after 5pm (and before 10am) and take in the breathtaking views and all there is to see and do.
Take a look at 5 reasons you will love Rothenburg ob der Tauber for.
1. WALKING OUTSIDE THE CITY WALLS
This was by far one of the most enjoyable experiences you can have in Rothenburg, Germany. The entire city is surrounded by a high wall in a circle. Take any of the stairs leading up 200 feet above the town, and you can experience some of the most spectacular views you have ever seen.
The wall is approximately 1.5 miles long and takes about an hour to explore including photo stops.
2. Visit the Castle Gardens
This small area of greenery is unmissable. Stroll along the garden paths which jet out of the town and offer perfect views of the German countryside. The best view of the garden can be found on the west side. There is a small wall where it is possible to sit and observe Rothenburg ob der Tauber from afar.
It is an excellent place to get the views of the city and appreciate the architecture without experiencing the typical Rothenburg ob der Tauber tourism crowds.
3. ROTHENBURG OB DER TAUBER RESTAURANTS FEATURES TRADITIONAL GERMAN FOOD
You cannot visit Germany without experiencing the many delicious foods that they have to offer. I had my concerns about eating out in Rothenburg ob der Tauber restaurants. As a tourist destination, it can often lead to overpriced, unauthentic food.
In contrast, if you stay off the main street and hit the side streets. If you are willing to look, you can still find a great local meal. I know of a traditional German restaurant I can recommend tucked away right off the main street, called Gasthaus zum Ochsen. We had a delicious meal, great Franconian beers, and honestly felt like the only non-locals in the whole place. They also have rooms available.
After walking through the narrow old quarter alleyways in Rothenburg ob der Tauber, visitors suddenly find themselves in the center of the city – the Marktplatz with its giant Town Hall. The entire ensemble represents the pride Rothenburg’s inhabitants took in their home. With its grand staircase, Renaissance facade and surrounding timber-framed buildings the Rothenburg Town Hall resembles a magnificent castle. In Rothenburg, the Ratstrinkstube towers over the Marktplatz instead of a beer cellar under the town hall.
4. Getting into the Holiday Spirit
Who is ready for the holiday season? In Rothenburg ob der Tauber, no matter what time of year it is, one gets the feeling that the whole town is preparing for the Christmas season. When we visited in October we were able to tell there was an atmosphere of excitement in the stores and even at the Christmas Museum.
5, TAKING EPIC PICTURES
I find it hard to take a bad picture or even to put the camera down when the place is so beautiful! Take lots of pictures but also remember that it is OK sometimes to simply put the camera down (and I know it is funny that I’m saying that) and enjoy the beautiful surroundings of one of Germany’s prettiest towns.
WHICH HOTELS ARE AVAILABLE IN ROTHENBURG OB DER TAUBER
(High End) – Hotel Herrnschloesschen – This luxury hotel located in the center of Rothenburg ob der Tauber is the ideal place to experience all of its charm. Located in an historic German building with modern conveniences.
(mid-range) – Historik Hotel Goldener Hirsch Rothenburg – If you are looking for a traditional Rothenburg ob der Tauber hotel, perhaps the place to stay is Historik Hotel Goldener Hirsch Rothenburg. Set inside the city walls yet overlooking the lovely German countryside, this is a wonderful spot for a fun German vacation.
Hostel Rothenburg ob der Tauber (Budget) – Because it is the only hostel in Rothenburg ob der Tauber, plan ahead! Located within walking distance from the center of town, this is the perfect hostel choice for anyone visiting the city.
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