Monday, May 06, 2013

Viking's Grand European River Cruise: Rothenburg, Germany

Viking River Cruise, Day 6:  Rothenburg and Würzburg, Germany (Facebook collage)
(click any collage to enlarge)

Soooooo, Ladies and Gentlemen!  Here's Part 2 of Day 6 when we took the optional excursion to Rothenburg in the morning, before visiting the Würzburg Residence in the afternoon (last post).  Once you see what we saw in "the best-preserved medieval town in Germany," you'll understand why we spent the extra money to go.

From our boat we hopped on coaches to take the "Romantic Road" to Rothenburg.
Okay, so what I caught isn't that romantic.  But wait till you see Rothenburg ob der Tauber,
considered the best-known of all the sights along the way.

 First of all, Rothenburg is a walled city, founded in 1170.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber = Red Fortress above the Tauber (river).

Immediately you see the half-timbered houses everywhere.

You may remember from my Miltenberg post how much I love this architecture!

The Burgtor, or castle gate (c. 1356), was one of the first sites we meandered off to....

...because of the garden area after walking through the gate and the 2 round guard houses...

...and the views afforded from the wall to the valley below.

As we headed back to the city center, we passed these wonderful arches,
like wheels in the middle of the wheel.

 As you know by now, city center (town square) is always the place to which we gravitate in European cities.
It's where all the old stuff is, of city hall, which is in 2 parts.
There's the gothic Imperial Hall, c. 1250-1400, and the 65-meter tower, seen from around the city.

The clock tower, c. 1683, stands to the right of town hall,
keeping track of the day of the month, hour and minute, in case you ever wondered.
Too bad it was getting a face job, right?

 Speaking of town hall, look at its gable stones!

And don't you love when the locals dress up for the tourists!

Now, speaking of gable stones, this city was gable-stone heaven.  OMG!  Are you ready?

I always feel like I've found money, you know!

 And since we're on a roll, here are the weathervanes I saw....

...the gargoyles...
(okay, that one isn't a gargoyle!)

...and the niches.
(okay, that one isn't a niche!)

How can you not love such a town!

Something for everybody, if you like medieval!

It so happens that a traditional German lunch in a local restaurant was included in this optional excursion...
...a stone's throw from the town square on one of the town's most scenic streets.
Two alleys come together to form the Plönlein Triangular Place
with the Siebers Tower gate on the left from 1385 and the Kobolzeller Gate on the right from 1360.
Oh, and, yes, this was the Thursday before Palm Sunday, with Easter decorations going up!

The Gasthof Glocke is a hotel and a restaurant.
Both white and red wines were from the Franconia region, where Rothenburg is.
Jerry and Carol were our delightful table mates who, believe it or not, stayed in the state room next to us.
It was our first time to meet them and are we ever glad we did.

I love the symbolism of towers and spires and...gateways.
Rothenburg is full of all of them!

And as we walked back to the buses, I couldn't help but think how lucky we were to see this well-preserved medieval city, which we'll never forget.

Now you know why I divided Day 6 into two separate posts!  After Rothenburg, we arrived back in Würzburg where our ship was docked...and where we then toured the Residence, etc., as seen in my last post.  

What a day!


  1. What a day indeed. Rothenburg is absolute wonderful. The sightseeing was overwhelming. Short of eyes the whole day. The lunch was good, what was too be expected. Bratwurst mit Sauerkraut und weiß does not get much better than that. Except for you fabulous pictures, over and over again.
    Thank you so much for another wonderful memory.

    1. I am SO GLAD we decided to go on this optional tour. Totally worth it after realizing how much it would cost us to go back at another time, let alone all the hassle! We were so lucky! Hartstikke bedankt, MLMA.

    2. So you think we should do it? We are going in May.

    3. It was the only extra excursion we took, Carol, and found it to be totally worth the price. YES. I'd highly recommend it!

  2. How wonderful to add so many gable stones and weathervanes to your collection!

  3. this is my favorite city so far. i wanna go there. i wanna stay in one of those beautiful buildings. i want to walk around town in the early morning when the town is just waking up. i want to smell the morning in this town. thanks ginnie. am putting another one in the undending bucket list.

    1. I guess you'll just have to do a Germany river cruise, Maria!!! I'll start wishing that for you and Hubby. I KNOW you'd love it. Thanks for coming along for the ride in the meantime.

  4. Beautifully put together post, I feel like I visited with you! Amazing that so many of the ancient buildings have survived over the centuries, but I'm sure they have all been maintained well. You are so lucky to have the opportunity to visit such a lovely place.

    1. I ditto everything you have said, Sham. We're still pinching ourselves! :)

  5. DEEEEElightful! Every bit. Just fabulous documentation, Boots!

    Does Astrid have a habit of kissing strangers, especially military types? :)

    1. Ohhh, thank you, dear sister! And YES. You always have to watch out for that Astrid, especially when it comes to "statues." :)

  6. What a perfect place for you, seeing all the things you love with your love!
    I really liked the arches and the little round guard houses, but so very much to see, a real whirlwind!

    1. Sharing all of this with Astrid makes life good, Susan. You're so right! I'm so glad I can give it all back like this as a second blessing. Thank you for joining the journey.

  7. Ha. I think you doubled your collection of gable stone photos in ONE day! Wow. The detail and charm is sensory overload. This town is a vacation destination in and of itself and you spent half a day ... Quite the whirlwind!

    1. As I work on all my images, Margaret, I'm realizing how each place we saw was like a taste, an appetizer, of what it would be like to spend a real vaction there. It really WAS a whirlwind. But as it settles down a bit, I'm paying lots of attention. I'm still pinching myself! Thank you.