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Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany - Rothenburg ob der Tauber Travel Guide - visiting Rothenburg - Indian Chief Travel
GERMANY  |  Romantic Road, Germany Travel Guide
Monday, June 17, 2024
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Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany
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Rothenburg ob derTauber

[ Related page: Great Small Towns of Germany ]

Rothenburg ob derTauber is one of Germany’s best-known little towns. It is a medieval walled town in an excellent state of repair. It has a population of 12,000 but around 2½ million day-trippers visit annually and just under half a million spend the night. It certainly is not the only medieval walled town in Germany but none is as attractive, or as popular. In the high season it is best to arrive in the afternoon, spend the night, and leave before lunch to avoid the crowds.

Rothenburg was founded in the 12th century and became a Free Imperial City in 1274. Around 1400, Rothenburg was at the peak of its power and, with 6,000 inhabitants, one of the largest cities in the empire. Decline started in the 16th century and was hastened when it adopted the Reformation. It was occupied several times during the Thirty Years’ War. Thereafter, the town was generally too poor to rebuild in the latest styles, so most of the town remained in a 16th-century time warp. It became part of Bavaria in 1802 and by the end of the 19th century was discovered by tourists. During World War II, artillery fire destroyed about 40% of the town, but most buildings were restored.

Rothenburg Orientation

Rothenburg is close to the Autobahn A7 and can be reached on the Europa Bus from Frankfurt. By train it is just over an hour from Würzburg (change at Steinach) or between one and two hours from Nürnberg (change at Ansbach and Steinach). The station is about 10 minutes walk to the east of the Old Town.

Once at Rothenburg, walking is the only option. Street-side parking is scarce and time-restricted. Large, well-marked parking lots are outside the walls. Most of the Old Town is closed to cars on weekdays from 11 am to 4 pm and from 7 pm to 5 am. The whole Old Town is closed to traffic on weekends – drivers with hotel reservations may enter through Galgentor.

Last updated March 11, 2012
Posted in   Germany  |  Romantic Road
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