Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany

Rothenburg ob der Tauber (population 10,000) is a very famous town in Germany. Matter of fact, tourists from all over the world come here. What's the lure? Its well-preserved medieval old town. How did Rothenburg ob der Tauber manage to protect its heritage? Normally, as towns grew they would tear down the walls, gates, watch towers and fortifications for expansion purposes. For some strange reason the town's forefathers, or more likely, dumb luck, managed to keep this delightful town/museum to the past intact.

 The building on the left is city hall.

Try as I could, I couldn't snap more photos of the main square without the appearance of tourists.

These perimeter walls are so cool. I just stop and try to visualize what it must have been like here back in the 1600's.
So, back in the 1600's if you made it through one entryway, you still had to pass through another set of gates.
 This is the first set of defenses.
 Lookout tower.

I've been to quite a few medieval towns where they're a rinky-dink, puny block long. On the contrary, Rothenburg ob der Tauber goes on for blocks in all directions.

This fountain dates back to 1607, though I'm not happy with the iron bars--meaning I can't fill up my water bottle.
So, it's about time I told you about the town's tourist scam.  These balls, which look like popcorn balls, are everywhere. I counted about a dozen shops selling schneeballen, the town's signature treat.
 What do you think? Looking good? Yeah, looking good but actually a joke,

When I asked this young woman pictured above why the balls were so popular she shook her head and said she couldn't understand it either since it was only egg dough deep fried in a ball and sprinkled with chocolate, white powder and/or a slew of other toppings.  I bought one, took a bite and, yuck! threw it away. Yet, the tourists from America and Japan buy 'em by the box full.

 It was a rainy day. I snapped this seconds before a huge downpour sent me running for cover.
I took cover under the awning of a store catering to tourists. That might explain the medieval chastity belt for sale in the window.

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