Rotenburg an der Fulda (in Hesse) is not your typical old medieval town that’s weathered the test of time. It’s much more than that, now a vibrant thriving community with plenty of sightseeing and activities for everyone.
Besides the expected medieval churches and watchtowers, Rotenburg had a Jewish community that played a vital role in the town’s history since the 14th century.
Rotenburg’s Market Place has been the hub of daily life here for centuries and the Renaissance style Town Hall has stood here overlooking things since it was built in 1597. There are also remnants of the Stadtmauer (circa 1290) and the two remaining watchtowers (the Witch Tower was used as a prison) help in maintaining the image of life in the Middle Ages.
The local history museum is a fantastic way of learning more about this unique city with an exhibit detailing the differences between the aristocracy and the daily life of a serf from the time. One glimpse of the 16th century Landgrafen Schloss or the ruins of the Rodenburg Castle are huge clues as to the differences of the classes of medieval Europe.
The “Church” was also the hub of daily life and you’ll be able to see the dedication that villagers put into these incredible buildings. The 14th century Church of Maria and Elisabeth and the 12th century Romanesque church (in the neighborhood of Braach) are utterly smashing. There’s an impressive 16th century alabaster alter that’s the main focal point at the Parish Church Jakobi, built in the 14th century.
Religion also played a daily role in the life of Rotenburg’s Jewish community that existed in town since the more than 600 years. There’s an excavated 17th century mikvah, or ritual bath and considered to be one of the best found in the entire country. In addition to the mikvah, there’s a Jewish Museum detailing the region’s community from its beginnings until the days of the 1930’s.
After a day of sightseeing, or two, enjoy one of the many recreational activities to be found here in Rotenburg an der Fulda. You’ll find horseback riding, tennis, and miniature golf keeping everyone busy.
And, the community pool is heated and free. No separation of any classes here, just a good ole time. ;-)