Waldsassen — It’s All About The Abbey, And Glass

Everyone just thinks about the Alps when Bavaria comes to mind. But, did you know that it also borders the Czech Republic? It’s on this border that you’ll find the town of Waldsassen.

Waldsassen became famous for its Imperial Abbey, and much of the town’s sightseeing revolves around it. It didn’t start out as an Imperial Abbey, just a regular old one built by the Cistercians in 1128. Less than two decades later it was granted its Imperial status by Conrad III.

Throughout the centuries, Waldstetten Abbey underwent renovations, and its present form comes from the Baroque period. Let me tell you, you couldn’t possibly improve on this church in any way. You’ll see rich-hued pink and blue marble, carved walls, and the finest details right down to its cherubs.

The Library of the Abbey isn’t just filled with magnificent books, but also wooden carved figures. If you think that’s great, wait til you see the ceiling. It’s open every day from Wednesday to Sunday, in case you’re interested.

Wait. Of course you are. ;-)

Out in the Convent Garden, there are a number of “stations” that are meant to instill an environmental awareness. Who knows if it will, but you’ll find it filled with herbs and other good stuff.

The Abbey even had a castle, built in 1574 with a drawbridge no less. Today it’s a tax office — yikes, don’t let them see me. I’ll head to the Goethe Column before they do. The column was erected here in honor of one of the Abbey’s famous visitors. Goethe must’ve loved the Abbey Church since he came here a number of times.

The Trinity Church (with Rosary Kappel) is another amazingly beautiful church. It has 15 stations, or prayer pillars, that make their way around the Baroque Rotunda. You can go any time, the church is open daily.

This entire abbey and church thing let’s us (almost) forget that Waldsassen is on the Glass Route. And for what, you ask? For its Glashütte Lamberts, a factory from 1934 that produces antique glass.

Waldsassen has a local history museum, the Stiftland Museum, open Tuesday to Sunday from April to January. Here you can learn about the legend of the Köllergrün (said to be the site of the 1st monastery in Waldsassen), then go see the pond for yourself.

If you want me, I’ll be out on a historical walking tour…

 

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