Bischofsheim an der Rhön — Positively Medieval

I have this friend nicknamed the “Medieval Chef;” so named because he absolutely refuses to join the 21st century with using a computer or anything of the sort. Not because he specializes in the kitchen cuisine from Emperor Barbarossa or England’s Henry VIII’s time. What’s my point?

Well, he’d be totally at home in the medieval town of Bischofsheim an der Rhön.

Because nothing screams the Middle Ages more than a proper castle, does it? All except the Osterburg isn’t a castle any longer, it’s totally in ruins; and the funny part is, no one quite knows when that happened — just that by the 1600s it was totally gone.

With some imagination it won’t take much to see its once former grandeur, that’s for sure. And if you’re lucky (or unlucky depending on how you look at it), you might come across the “Virgin in White,” a ghost said to haunt the area.

Funny, I’m surprised there aren’t more specters over the centuries since the area of the Osterburg was once a Celtic stronghold.

Moving right along, another medieval site my chef friend could appreciate would be Kloster Kreuzberg. Built over what was once a pagan site, the monastery receives over a half-million visitors a year — but I’m pretty sure the Klosterbrauerei (Monastery Brewery) has nothing to do with it — they’re coming to see its beautiful high altar. Aren’t they?

And as for beautiful, not much else is more lovely than the Lower Franconian countryside (hello, Bischofsheim lies around a UNESCO Biosphere area). I’d probably say this is why the Hochrhöner Premiumweg was rated “one of the most beautiful hiking routes” in all of Germany.

What’s even better is the Hochrhönbus runs on weekends (and holidays) between May and October — perfect for when you’re just plain tuckered out from all that walking.

Hiking isn’t the only activity (but with 170km of trails you could do it for a long time), it’s just one of many.

Deep breath… here we go…

You’ve got a choice to try bicycling; mountain biking; hot air ballooning; swimming; ice skating; cross-country skiing; and snowboarding — or you could do all of them.

As if this isn’t enough to keep you busy for a lifetime, Bischofsheim has quite a number of cultural events and activities taking place throughout the year. This is a tradition-loving town where wood carving has been going on for centuries; it’s a place where it’s fun to celebrate Carnival; and where mutton stew (with dumplings) is a culinary delight during its Kirchweih celebration.

That’s something any foodie or chef could appreciate, especially my Medieval Chef friend. ;-)

 

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