Babenhausen (Hesse) — Framework Road Meets 500 Year Old Tree

A town must really be spectacular in order to be part of the infamous German Framework Road a.k.a. Deutsche Fachwerkstrasse. What’s that you say?

It’s a route of 100 cities and towns running some 3000 km or 1864 miles north and south within Germany — filled with historic places, monuments, and parks. Babenhausen (Hesse) is one such town on the Framework’s Purple Route, so you’re sure to be delighted in what the town has to offer.

It’s a nostalgic town with a wonderful medieval harvest festival, a Forest Celebration (held the 2nd Sunday in August) and a large Christmas Market (on the first weekend of Advent). There are even wonderful concerts held here every February.

Babenhausen lies in the south of Hesse with grassy meadows as far as the eye can see, yet conveniently located near the big cities of Frankfurt and Darmstadt. It’s a town with a history that spans some 800 years.

The Middle Ages seems to come to life here in Babenhausen as the Stadtmauer (fortification wall) almost encircles the entire old town. Also the Hexenturm (Witch’s Tower) and the Breschturm (the name of this tower comes from the time of the Thirty Years’ War — but not sure why) still stand guard here.

There are plenty of half-timbered houses here, looking exquisite with their flower window boxes, the oldest one in town dates back to the early 1400’s. The 15th century waterwheel mill is now a wonderful restaurant and beer garden.

During Feudal Times no village was complete without a castle. The original castle here was built in the 12th/13th centuries. The castle was once protected by a moat but it was filled in sometime in the 19th century.

The Protestant Church Nikolaus on the Marketplace and the Protestant Gothic Church (a wonderful 19th century church) shouldn’t be missed, too.

Almost as old as the castle and St. Nikolaus Church is Babenhausen’s Old Oak, an oak tree that’s some 550 years old. Sit for a picnic under that noble tree and listen to the stories it will tell you! :-)

 

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