A Magic Christmas Trip To Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber, Germany
After a long and grey November, finally December is here and suddenly all lights up: stores, streets, moods, we know Christmas is just around the corner. Living in Munich for almost a decade, meeting up with friends for a glass of Glühwein (mulled wine) at a Christmas market, became a ritual. Even after moving to London I carried on with the tradition of visiting German Christmas markets. This year I felt like going somewhere different, perhaps a smaller German town or a village and decided to take a magic Christmas trip to Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber in Germany, a small town in Bavaria not far from Nuremberg (Nürnberg).
Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber At Christmas
Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber is a little medieval town from early 13th century, built on a hill surrounded by town walls with a historic atmosphere you can feel even today. The stone cobbled streets are lined with fairy tale houses from a bygone age, all very relaxed and cosy. A perfect place to have a short break to enjoy the real Christmas magic.
Festive Things To Do In Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber
Walking through the picture postcard streets is like stepping back in time to the Middle Ages, with taverns, cafes and wonderful gift and craft shops – all decorated in a very authentic way.
Stopping several times at the festive markets for a glass of mulled wine, some Nürnberger sausages, surrounded by the Christmas spirit with tree lights and soft music in the background. If you are lucky, you might get some snow, which makes the whole experience feel extra magical!
You must try Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber local cafes and their traditional Christmas bakeries during the day and the amazing restaurants at night.
Where To Eat In Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber
After sipping a glass of Glühwein at the Christmas market on our first evening, we discovered a great restaurant with local specialties – Der Reichsküchenmeister. The restaurant was pretty full and luckily we managed to get a table. We ordered a soup, called Maultaschensuppe, imagine a broth with a massive tortellini inside filled with meat. A steak with a topper crust and pork with potato dumplings. Well the portions are so big, best go there with big appetite! I struggled to finish my main. If you look at the pictures below you will know why! 🙂 I must say I love German food! A bit rich, exactly what you need in the cold weather!
On the second day we went to a restaurant, a tavern zur Höll (meaning literally – to Hell) which also had local food and excellent reviews. It looked wonderful from outside and inside, an old tavern type house (dating back to circa 900), with medieval interiors, authentic regional food, selection of the best wines of the region and as the reviews say it is a must. Unfortunately this time we had less luck and didn’t get a table, so make sure to make reservation.
Where To Stay In Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber
I would definitely recommend staying in the old town. I was very lucky to stay for 2 nights at The Gerberhaus found through booking.com costing around 100 Euros per night including breakfast. It was a very traditional & historic place with its own cute café and a big cosy medieval court yard.
More Things To Do
Take A Country Walk
On our second day in the morning we walked along the tower wall. Looking down we could see that actually Rothenburg was built on a hill. Below there is a small river called the Tauber, surrounding the old town. We decided to take a walk down and cross the river.
After crossing the bridge, there is a sign for the forest path, follow it for 30 minutes and you will be standing on the opposite side of the hill, facing the town. A lovely scenic walk which takes about two hours.
Buy Souvenirs, Treats and Gifts
Don’t forget to buy something to remember from your visit. I got some light and tasty Christmas biscuits from a bakery. Perfect with a cup of tea or coffee. At the Christmas markets there are many things to buy: food, toys, decorations, ceramics and cards. I brought a wooden pig and a book mark, I liked, created by an Austrian artist named Hans Steffin.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber feels like a Christmas fairy tale town, a German Disneyland. A perfect place for a proper magical atmosphere. It is a nice opportunity to slow down at the year’s end and have a peaceful tranquil break. A magic Christmas trip to Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber is definitely worth it.
How To Get Get from Nuremberg to Rothenburg ob der Tauber?
First you have to reach the Nürnberg Hauptbahnhof (Central Station). You can buy your metro tickets at the information desk in the airport (around 11 Euros for a return ticket for 2 people). The metro journey to the central station took just 13 minutes. All Easy!
From central station we took a train to Ansbach (30 min journey), from Ansbach a train to Steinach (20 min journey) and then from Steinach to Rothenburg (14 min journey). It sounds like many changes, but all went very smoothly as the transfer times were just about 5 minutes and German trains are very comfortable. Our train tickets from Nürnberg Hauptbahnhof to our final destination Rothenburg o. T. I booked through www.DB.com, about 40 Euros return per person.
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All images in this post are my own. This post isn’t sponsored.