Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber: Roll me ober in der clover

Nearly indigestible balls of pie dough for day trade
Nearly indigestible balls of pie dough for day trade

Every day during the summer Rothenburg ob der Tauber is invaded by massive wheezing buses filled with wide, white and happy tourists pouring out to get their morning or afternoon dose of European love dispensed in the form of a miniature beer stein on a key chain.

Here’s the secret: places like this are tourist traps from the hours of 9:00 am to 4:30 pm. Once the buses roll out again, the people come out and transform the place back into something real. So don’t roll out with the bus,  take the time to find a nice bed and breakfast or zimmer inside the city walls. 

Yes, I know, there is a Best Western or Holiday Inn or something like that just across from the train station or only a mile down the highway. Trust me. The B&B may not be much cheaper but it will include breakfast which, in Germany, is a lot. In Belgium there is always pie; in Germany there is always meat. And eggs and cheese. The style of buns varies through the day but are always a wonderful workout for your jaws. Like celery, you use up calories with these brotchen: none of that weak, giggling, girlie-man wonderbread with crusts so soft they could line your slippers. 

mood shot
mood shot

Stay the night. Go for a walk with the Night Watchman. He’s been giving this tour for years and is only slightly demented from long term exposure to the same questions every single time. Think Gene Wilder in Young Frankenstein with a lantern and pike. 

The wall around the city was started in the 13th century but the fortifications date back to the 11th century when it was founded. This was once one of the 20 largest cities in the Holy Roman Empire, a trading giant and popular place for pilgrimage. These walls protected the prosperous Rotheburgians 01270020until the Thirty Years war. Those who survived that invading army were left with little food or shelter and no time to rebuild before the invisible invader, the Black Death, took almost everything that was left. 

Time, progress and the industrial revolution passed by the gates of Rothenburg. The busses only stop for a few hours. The magic really doesn’t start until you have time to walk the wall in the early morning. Watch the sun set over der Tauber; take in an organ recital in the 700 year old Franciscan church; walk with the Night01270021 Watchman through the ancient streets. 

She has waited almost a thousand years for you, the least you can do is spend the night. 


quit playing with your food...that famous german sense of humour
quit playing with your food…that famous german sense of humour




german whimsy...always a surprise
german whimsy…always a surprise\



B&B 2001
B&B 2001
B&B 2006


  1. thank you for commenting on my blog. I have lost all my blog friends and now I can keep connected with you as you travel through europe!

    1. So glad to see you here, mimi. And for commenting–it’s always a good thing to hear from the great out there.

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