On the old Salt Road in the Thuringian Forest is a tiny toy making town known as Waltershausen. Correction, it WAS a toy making town until around 1990. Now, it’s a small town of barely eleven thousand residents with a few points of interest to keep you occupied.
This didn’t stop folks from proudly including it on the German Toy Road though. ;-)
One of these points of interest (for citizen & visitors alike as it’s also got an interesting museum) is the Salzmannschule (Salzmann School). Established in 1784, this unique gymnasium specializes in teaching languages (English, Latin, Arabic, Japanese, Chinese, Latin, French, Spanish, Russian — all by native speakers). Wow, that’s a whole lotta stuff!
Waltershausen — Top Areas Of Interest
Most of Waltershausen’s sightseeing can be done in one location: Schloss Tennenberg. The castle itself is a piece of Waltershausen’s history built in 1150 A.D. Cross the stone bridge to enter where you’ll find exhibitions on the town’s urban history, toy making history, and Thuringian folklore.
Schloss Tennenberg also hosts meetings, concerts, and literary readings. It’s history and culture all neatly packaged into one place.
Another piece of the town’s history is the Stadtkirche. This couple-hundred year old church with tower does look a bit out of place on a busy modern street. If you like the Stadtkirche, you’ll like the church in the village of Wahlwinkel with its onion dome.
Stadtkirche isn’t as old as Walterhausen’s historic Rathaus (Town Hall), a timber framed structure built in 1441. Only the Klaustor gate is older which made its appearance in 1390.
Other sightseeing around Waltershausen is best done on the many walking trails through the Thuringian countryside. They don’t just aimlessly meander on; there are nine different trails with various distances that lead off to specific sites. Most of them stop at Schloss Tennenberg, so you can always head off in a different direction if you’re inclined.
Don’t go off into the forest when Waltershausen celebrates its City Celebration around Ascension Day, which is about forty days after Easter. Use the festival as a chance to try some regional Thuringian dishes; like Rinderrouladen (rolled meat with various fillings), or Zwiebelkuchen, which is an onion cake.
You’ll have a good time in the center of Germany sampling the best food, trampling along the forest, and learning all sorts of new things at the castle museum.
I couldn’t ask for a better time, you?