We planned to visit Rothenberg ODT on our second day in Germany. We went to bed around 10 pm on our first night, and didn’t wake up until 10:30 am on the second day! Holy Cow! We slept over 12 hours. We missed breakfast – and we messed up our plans. After deciding we could go anyways, and we were off.
This happened to us on our last trip and on this trip too. We program the GPS and it sends us a totally different way than the directions I printed out from Google Maps. We decided to follow the GPS. This took us through a town with a US military base in it, and a McDonald’s. We stopped in there for breakfast/lunch since we missed breakfast at the hotel with our late start and free, clean bathroom.
We finally made it to Rothenberg and the parking lot outside the town. Rothenberg is a walled town, and driving in the city is discouraged. After working with another American tourist and Google Translate we were able to figure out how to pay for parking and get our parking tickets. Then we were off. We walked into the town and to the Market Square – to hear an American High School marching band playing! We found out this was part of a tour around Europe for state marching bands. After navigating through the crowd, we embarked on our walking tour.
It seems like every single building in town is charming and half-timbered. It is like walking into a storybook version of Germany. In fact, it is such a fairy tale it was used as the inspiration for the village in Disney’s animated movie Pinocchio. Our walking tour took us into a church, to the water tower, into a convent garden, and the castle garden. On our way back to the Market Square we stopped in Kathe Wohlfarht’s store. This is a Christmas store like you have never seen before. Stuffed animals, nutcrackers, German Christmas pyramids, basically anything you can associate with Christmas is in this store.
We walked down the main gift shop street in town and stopped at a butcher because my husband saw lundjaeger in the window. This is a type of dried meat snack. He used to order it at a German restaurant on the New Jersey shore and he wanted to try “the real thing”. The verdict – it is better in Germany!
Our visit to Rothenberg was closed out with a trip back the Market Square to see the large-scale cuckoo clock play at 5:00. It was a cute show, and the men that popped out of the windows were enjoying some German beers – it’s 5:00 somewhere, even in Germany!
We loved our day in Rothenberg. It is full of charm, and is a storybook setting. If we didn’t feel like we were in Germany in Nuremberg we 100% felt we were in Germany walking the streets of Rothenberg.