Rothenburg ob der Tauber is situated along the ‘Romantic Road‘ which runs through the southern provinces of Germany. This medieval walled city is captivating at any time of year, but it’s at Christmas time that it really comes alive!
It justifiably holds the unofficial title of ‘Christmas Capital of Germany’ mainly because of its connections with Käthe Wohlfahrt, a traditional Christmas decorations company based in the town.
The Christmas market held in Rothenburg is surprisingly small considering its festive credentials, however this probably due to the space available in the walled town. The main activity is in the market square in the shadow of the magnificent town hall.
The stalls extend down a few of the cobbled streets leading from the square, and there’s also the opportunity to visit the Christmas Museum and Christmas Village, or one of 6 Käthe Wohlfahrt stores situated around the city!
The large majority of the stalls were selling food and drink, the usual fayre that you’d expect from a Christmas market, German sausage, gluhwein and beer, but plenty to choose from!
The range of gifts available on the remaining stalls wasn’t vast, but there was still plenty of unique and local products on offer, such as liqueurs, herbs and spices, delicatessen meats and of course, Christmas decorations!
The speciality of Rothenburg are ‘Schneeballen’; deep fried pastry balls topped with icing sugar, chocolate and various other flavours. You’ve not been to Rothenburg if you’ve not tried a Schneeball!
A small area held a few fairground type rides for children to enjoy, and there were also performances in front of the town hall to keep people entertained.
Once we’d exhausted the Christmas market, our festive evening continued with a visit to the Christmas Village, a huge store with a giant Christmas tree, a floor to ceiling Christmas pyramid and thousands of Christmas decorations to browse through!
There’s certainly a warm festive atmosphere in Rothenburg, despite the fact that we visited on a cold, rainy evening on our second trip. The medieval streets are oozing with character at all times of the day!
During our first visit we were spoilt by big fat fairytale-like snowflakes falling all evening, making the whole experience magical!
The Family Experience
It’s definitely a location to take the children along to, there are attractions to keep the little ones entertained on the market, and they will be captivated by the Christmas museum (although little fingers may start twitching!) and the fairytale quality of the town is enough to entrance any story loving child!
Overall, we loved Rothenburg, but it was definitely the Käthe Wohlfahrt influence on the town that gave it the Christmas spirit!