Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The City of Rothenberg

Today we made the one hour drive from Nuremburg to Rothenberg were we are staying at a quaint little hotel with a bed and breakfast feel. They have a lovely garden in back and in front is a church, from which I can hear the organ music. 

View looking down from tower
The city of Rothenberg is small because it is a walled city with its original wall.  We did walk along part of the wall and in the old castle gardens. The castle is no longer there but the castle gate is which has a frowning face of a man from which hot oil/tar was poured out onto invaders. The gardens were nice and provided excellent views of the valley and parts of the city.  In the center of town we saw the Town Hall and Medieval Crime Museum. We climbed to the top of the Town Hall tower.  The tower is 200 ft. high and the climb up started with a nice stone spiral staircase, then turned into a bit steeper wooden stair case with switch backs, then a narrower steeper
View from garden wall
semi-spiral staircase. Then at the top you basically climbed an old wooden ladder to get out onto the narrow tower roof which had a bell. It was a wonderful view from the top, which provided sweeping views of the Tauber Valley and the city of Rothenberg.  The Medieval Crime Museum was interesting; they basically punished you for anything that the rulers or the church found offensive. I know a lot of people that would be wearing masks of shame if they still that now a days. Interesting pieces in the museum included male and female chastity belts, the masks of shame of which each was different depending on the offense, and several types of torcher devises.  This
made for a pretty full day of walking around.   

On a food related note we had Schneeballen, which resemble scraps of dough formed into a loose ball and possibly deep-fried.  Then they cover them with powdered sugar, chocolate or other types of flavored frosting glaze.  Apparently they can last up to 8 weeks without refrigeration, but they are too tasty to sit around that long.  Schneeballen are traditional Franconian pastries which have been around for at least 300 years. It is also the signature pastry of Rothenberg.  You can see pictures from the town here.

Tonight we are eating at a restaurant whose name translates to “To Hell” which serves traditional Franconian food.  Then we have the night watchman’s tour of the town. Then tomorrow it is off to the castle in the Mosel valley.

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