Rothenberg ob der Tauber
This morning the sky is gray and the streets are wet. It's cold. We were getting spoiled with all the gorgeous weather. But it's also only 7:30am.
As we enter the dining room for our included breakfast we're asked if we'd like eggs, and how, and then seat ourselves. As usual the spread is sumptuous. Just minutes later Mike's eggs arrived, perfectly scrambled, not dry, with crispy bacon. The waiter suggests Karen try their waffles and syrup, which turn out great. Lot's of fruit, cereal, rolls, cheese and some cake later we are done. As we go back to the room the sun is breaking out. The day is going to be good. Our luck is with us!
So out we go following a tour that Rick Steve's guide describes which will have us walking through the whole town in about two hours. He writes well and provides plenty of information and suggestions.
First stop is a climb up the Town Hall tower, 200 feet high and 214 steps to the top. The final 50 steps or so are almost like climbing a ladder and every 10 or 15 is a small landing to allow others to pass by coming the other way. The last 10 steps might as well be a ladder as going up or down you have to face the wall the stairs are going up on. On top of all this the tower top only has room for 20 people so way down at the bottom is an electronic turnstile that will not let you in until someone else has exited. They also have a sign asking you not to spend more than 5 minutes up there. Good thing we were there shortly after it opened as the line must get very long.
Back down we were just in time to see the clock tower do it's abbreviated cuckoo clock imitation. On the hour two windows open on either side of the clock and wooden figures do their thing to the clanging of the bells.
We walked through the rest of the town, into a museum showing Rothenberg in 1631, the year they lost over 50% of their people, all their possessions and money from the pillaging at the end of the 30 yrs war. We were back to the streets, and about 1pm or so stopped for a rest. We managed to snag a table right in the middle of the Marketplatz.
Since we're planning a big dinner tonight, the stop was for a snack of coffee and some great cakes full of icing and layers and, in Mike's case, topped with a raspberry aspic.
Here's a funny aside. We wanted to verify if we needed reservations at the restaurant, so we walked in about the same time a waiter, we think, was coming by. Mike asked if he spoke English and, in Italian, said no, and that he just spoke Italian. He was surprised obviously when I looked at him and quickly said "so do I" and launched into his question about reservations. There are none needed.
So, back out to do some XMAS shopping. It's a good thing we didn't set a budget. We bought fascinating stuff for ourselves as well as gifts. Hand painted balls, Santa Clauses, typical moving decorations, etc. We took a quick stop back at the room to drop all that, and then out again. We can't imagine what this place looks like at Christmas as this town is supposed to have one of the best Christmas markets in Germany. Some day we would love to see it.
After dropping our bags, we set out to walk the wall (still intact from the middle ages) that surrounds the town. It is a mile in length, but we got sidetracked at Plonlein Sq (the most photographed site in town). The wall is completely covered on top so it can be walked even in pouring down rain. There are towers every so often, 14 in all. At Plonlein we took photos, as were dozens of others doing the same, and stopped in at a shop whose owner does original etchings and bought one of this same site. We hope to get back for a continuation of the walk along the wall before we leave this wonderful town.
We walked some more and made our last stop at the Medieval Crime & Punishment Museum. This was an exhaustive, fascinating exhibit of crime and punishment from medieval times to the 18th century.
It was now after 5pm so we headed back to rest, and blog before heading out to dinner at 6:30pm.
Dinner is at Ratsstube. It's busy, but we're early enough to have a good selection of tables and are able to get a table in the center of the restaurant with good views. Within a half hour there are no tables left.
Dinner tonight for Karen is a Pork Tenderloins in a sherry cream sauce with potato croquettes while Mike has a Sirloin steak with fried onions and fried potatoes and some red wine. Both come with a salad. In short the dinner was excellent.
We finished about 8pm and went out for a brief walk on the Marketplatz, and checked in on the crowd waiting for the Night Watchman. Sure enough, at least another 100 people. Enough for today; tomorrow we're going to Bamberg, about 100 Km, maybe 90 minutes away. So back to the hotel at 8:30 to finish up the blog.
Guten Nacht to all.
View of Marktplatz from Town Hall Tower
Houses on Marktplatz
Karen (and some nice desserts)
Plonlein Tower View - Most Popular View