I’m sending out big kudos to my Art History college professor. Without her I would have never have appreciated everything to see in the town of Oberstenfeld.
The fact this town within the Stuttgart Metropolitan Region is also on the Württemberg Wine Road is secondary to its medieval architecture.
Yes, I’m ranking the wine drinking to the backseat when compared to the town’s magnificent churches and its castle.
Let me start at Burg Lichtenberg. This hilltop castle was built in 1197, and thought to be one of the prettiest (OK, that’s my opinion) Romanesque castles you’ll ever see. Visitors are welcome to see its tower, courtyard, and chapel from April to November.
The Romanesque theme follows over to the 11th century Church of St. Peter; that went unused for an umpteen number of years. It now serves for both Protestant and Catholic services on occasion — which will give you a reason to come see its medieval frescoes.
Over at St. Cyriakus the church itself was rebuilt around 1599, but its tower is a 13th century original.
This isn’t the last of Oberstenfeld’s churches — not by a long shot. The most impressive is the Collegiate Church of St. John the Baptist. The oldest part of the church is its crypt (circa 1025), has a nave from the early 13th century, highlighted by Baroque accents.
It’s open to everyone on Sundays from 11am to 1pm, with guided tours available for only a few Euro. Spend the money, it’s worth it to get a proper tour of this thousand year old church.
If you get a chance, the 9th century Gallus Chapel is located not too far from here.
All right, you’ve earned the right to follow your tastebuds to the wineries. The Württemberg Wine Road is a 511km scenic route (starting in Weikersheim, ending in Metzingen) offering all the best of viticulture.
Go ahead, find an outside café, order a glass of Riesling — perusing the town’s half-timbered houses (like the late 17th century Rathaus, Winzerhaus, and Pfründhaus).
I’m making a toast to you, Professor. Thanks, I learned a lot; and I hope the rest of you out there do too.