I don’t care if the official name of Oettingen is Oettingen i.Bay, whatever the place chooses to call itself is of little consequence — just relish the fact that Oettingen is a fantastic Swabian town surrounded by forests and along the Wörnitz River.
You know what that means, right? Yup, you guessed it, get ready to spend a good deal of time outdoors. So put on your most comfortable shoes, then head out into the bright Bavarian sunshine to first see if you can find a pair of nesting storks. These magnificent birds have been coming back year after year — for the last four centuries.
Ha, we think we’re an intelligent species — these birds knew a good thing when they saw it. ;-)
— Top Areas Of Interest
It’s common for the storks to nest over by the St. James Church. Maybe they like living right by its tall square clock tower? I know I wouldn’t mind living by the Oettinger Brewery, which has been brewing fine German beer for more than 500 years. That’s right, the place has been making beer long before the German Purity Law came into effect. Go on, take a tour of the place.
The historical side of Oettingen doesn’t end at the brewery (at least for some), so go see the half-timbered Rathaus (Town Hall, built 1431), or catch a glimpse of the Baroque/Rococo Schloss Oettingen (this castle is privately owned), and don’t leave out stops to both the Chapel of St. Anna (known for its Pieta) and Chapel of St. Leonard (it’s got gorgeous 16th century artwork).
However, of all of Oettingen’s churches, the Gruftkirche is the one to visit if you’re into all that medieval stuff — since it is officially a 13th century church.
Have you worn out your shoes yet? Well, best make sure since it isn’t time to go yet. Why? Because you haven’t tackled the six marked hiking trails (ranging from 7 km – 20 km), nor have you ventured off on one of the many cycling trails. Don’t balk, they’re just a mere 30 km to 70 km; you can do that in no time at all.
Anyone who’s afraid they might miss something can always take a guided tour, which should take about an hour for the highlights. Or, if you’re into the darker side of things, you’re always welcome on a Night Watchman tour. Plus, there’s always the Heritage Museum, housed in a building once belonging to the Teutonic Knights.
Do you see why it doesn’t really matter what Oettingen calls itself — nothing would change the fact that it’s just great to be here.