Friday, January 8, 2010

Ulm & Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Our day started with a short detour to Ulm, a town situated on the Danube River. It's also home to the church with the tallest steeple in the world, the Ulmer Münster. While we didn't spend much time there (though of course ate at one of their fantastic bakeries), we did visit the church and walk around inside-- though I have no pictures of the inside, oddly.

Here are a few of us standing in the market sqaure just outside the church.

Then... back in the car to visit the most beautifully restored medieval city in all of Germany: Rothenburg ob der Tauber (that means "above the Tauber River). We had visited this lovely city before with Nic & Alison when they came to visit in October, but we knew it would be a real hit taking our families. It's a city located in Bavaria along the Romantic Road. Even the Frommer's guide says to visit this particular city if you only have time for one. The city dates back to the 10th century.

I cut this piece from Wikipedia (modified to shorten) because I thought it was so interesting: In WWII, German soldiers were stationed in Rothenburg to defend it. On March 31, bombs were dropped over Rothenburg by 16 planes, killing 39 people and destroying 306 houses, six public buildings, nine watchtowers, and over 2,000 feet of the wall. The U.S Assistant Secretary of War knew about the historic importance and beauty of Rothenburg, so he ordered that the army general not use artillery in taking Rothenburg. The local military commander Major Thömmes ignored the order of Adolf Hitler for all towns to fight to the end and gave up the town, thereby saving it from total destruction by artillery. After the war, the residents of the city quickly repaired the bombing damage.

I posted this photo a few days go in an earlier post... but here it is again!

We walked along the city wall and took some shots...

...ready to go!

The one on the left looks unstaged, right? :) I like it.

3/5 are waving... pretty good!

The city wall from the parking lot. In the summer, it's unimaginable to get a spot in here... and in the winter (especially during a holiday week), parking was no problem!

Steve and the meat shop

Käthe Wohlfahrt is a store that appears to have their hand in every Christmas store cookie jar. Really... they're everywhere! In Rothenburg alone, they have like 4 or 5 stores on the same row. All of us made our purchases, too. She sucks you in........

Quite the jokester!

This is the quinntessential Rothenburg ob der Tauber photo. If you've been there, you have it.

Their Rathaus (city hall)

A bunch of cityscapes...

Doesn't that look like ocean in the distance? It's not...

...and now for the Schneeball. If you've been to Solvang, California... they have their aebleskiver (well, they claim it's Danish, but I don't know if it's true since we haven't been to Denmark yet). Belgium has their waffles (and they are amazing). Nürnberg is famous for their sausage, and Berlin for their donuts (jelly filled, powedered sugar covered "Berliner"). Rothenburg folks have their Schneeballen. Schnee = snow. Ballen = balls. I think they're a tourist thing and I'm convinced almost no resident eats them. They aren't amazing. All they are... pie dough deep fried and covered in powdered sugar. That's the basic one. You can get them covered in chocolate (makes them better) and various other sweets. Steve, the lover of all things dessert, made a point to purchase a couple... and the whole gang tasted away...

Click on this photo below to read about them (left is English)

We also visited one of the cathedrals there: St Jacob's Cathedral

Now, here's a flashback to our first Rothenburg visit with our friends Alison & Nic (note the same photo... but with a table outside...and warmer weather = no jackets needed!):

This was a favorite city of our family. It really is a very quaint city. It's one of our favorites in Germany, too!
Next stop, Heidelberg!


James said... [Reply to comment]

Amazing pictures.
I was in Germany 3 times, but i never been in Rothenburg yet.
You must to visit Chile someday.
Best regards.