Rothenburg’s green oasis - The Tauber Valley
The most beautiful view of Rothenburg ob der Tauber? It’s not just the romantic timber-frame buildings and unique structures in the old quarter that make Rothenburg ob der Tauber so exceptional, it’s also the topography: when arriving via the Hohenloher Plateau, hardly any modern building interferes with the view of the medieval old city wall and numerous towers. As indicated by its name, Rothenburg ob der Tauber lies high above the Tauber, thus forming the perfect starting point for bike tours and hikes, for example along the Mühlenweg (trail of historic mills). What should you definitely see in the Tauber Valley near Rothenburg? We’ll give you some ideas.
From the Wildbad congress center to the Double Bridge
South of the Spital Gate, directly at the river in the Tauber Valley, you’ll find a unique gem, a place for rest and contemplation: The Wildbad is an excellent place to spend the night, dine or experience culture. You can enjoy a picnic in its picturesque park or go bowling in a genuine historic wooden alley. The building appears like an enchanted fairy-tale castle. The spa facility built from 1894 to 1903 is now used for conferences, concerts and art exhibits. If you follow the Tauber downriver from here, you’ll soon get to the Eselsbrücke – an old trade route, just like the Double Bridge that follows. With its double arch, it’s reminiscent of Roman architecture. The background: The original bridge turned out to be too short, so the planners simply built another bridge across the Tauber river. While you enjoy the unique view of Rothenburg ob der Tauber’s city skyline, don’t forget to take in the former significance of the bridge: as a customs bridge, it became one of the reasons why the city was so wealthy in the Middle Ages, since this trade route brought plenty of tax revenue. In World War II, the bridge was imploded and, just like the city wall, rebuilt according to the original style.
Along the Mühlenweg to Detwang
When you continue to follow the Tauber river after the Double Bridge, you’re already on the beautiful Tauber-Mühlenweg: No other place in the world has as many mills surrounding it as Rothenburg ob der Tauber. Many are now privately owned, while some are used as guest houses. The hiking trail along the mills illustrates the history and significance of the mills in the Tauber Valley. It belongs to the extensively signposted network of trails for hikers that offers 13 tours around Rothenburg ob der Tauber. All trails have one thing in common: They offer wonderful views of the old quarter and a nature experience for all ages. In the Tauber Valley itself, you can also immerse yourself in nature on a bicycle on one of Germany’s most beautiful trails. If you start on this tour – whether on foot or on bike – you should be sure to stop in at the Toppler Castle (1388). This was once used as a summer retreat for Mayor Toppler and its stilted design has been a model for imitations: Herzogstadl of the Rieseneck Hunting Grounds in Thuringia mimicked the architectural style of the Toppler Castle in the early 20th century. The house is on the estate of the Boas family, which is happy to grant visitors a look inside the Toppler Castle. The journey along the Tauber continues to the Unter den Linden beer garden and then to Detwang. In this district of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, you can find not only two magnificent campgrounds; visitors will also see another altar by Tilman Riemenschneider in the church. From Detwang, you can also get a last glimpse of the old city skyline of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, before continuing towards Bettwar and Creglingen (with the Herrgotts Church and Riemenschneider’s Altar of St. Mary) in the north – or you can simply turn around.