From its Roman beginnings, it took a long, long time for the town of Bad Hönningen to actually be “bad.”
The Bad designation isn’t an indication of how misbehaved the place is — nope, it’s a good (German) way of saying it’s a spa town.
Took long enough. The first spa opened here way back in 1895, and it took some 55 years for the place to officially get its Bad title.
Well, that’s mineral water under the bridge at this point, isn’t it? Today you’ll be more than happy to just lounge around the town’s state-approved spa swimming, relaxing in the jacuzzi, getting a nice massage.
You know, if this was around when the Romans were here, they might not have ever left. They did stick around for quite a long time, as the area was once along the Limes, or Roman border. Bad Hönningen still celebrates its Roman beginnings, from its Römerwelt (a Roman Museum that’s quite interactive), to its Roman Weekends in May, and its Roman Watchtower.
Hmm, no wonder Bad Hönningen is found along the German Limes Road.
That’s not the only route found here. For those traveling by car, the German Avenues Route lurches its way through town. And the Rheinsteig, a long distance hiking route, will bring you right on over.
And, while not technically a scenic route, Bad Hönningen’s Wine Blossom Festival marks the official start of the Wine Festival season. I’d have to say the Roman Wine Weekend in October is a really good one to come to.
Bad Hönningen doesn’t just limit itself to wine and Romans. The town celebrates with all sorts of other festivals, like the Federweißefest in November, its Sts. Peter & Paul Fair in June, and its Medieval Spectacle (with jousting no less) in May. They also host a Beer Festival, a Summer Night Festival, and a Nostalgic Christmas Market.
How does anyone get any work done around here? How am I supposed to get any work done around here? ;-)
A trip to Bad Hönningen doesn’t end when the festivals are finished. You haven’t seen its landmark yet, have you? You can’t miss it — it’s that big castle up on the hillside surrounded by those gorgeous vineyards. Schloss Arenfels’ modern palace look is a far cry from its medieval days — but is still owned by a Baron. Burg Ariendorf, while not so lavish, is still another glorious castle to add to the things to see along the Rhine in Bad Hönningen.
Amazing what’s become of Bad Hönningen when barely a dozen homes survived from the devastation of the Thirty Years’ War.
I think you’ll just love how wonderful Bad Hönningen has become — and it only gets better with age. Just like a fine wine, come to think of it…