All right, my second town in Bavaria this week whose hometown son’s story caught my attention. But, Barbing is much more than just the hometown of Johann Michael Sailer — it’s a place in the Upper Palatinate with old churches, hiking areas around the Danube, and quite a history to it.
I mentioned Johann Michael Sailer first, so let’s talk about him for a minute…
Born the son of a shoemaker, Johann went on to become a noted bishop and writer, and even worked with Beethoven himself. Now do you see why he’s worth mentioning?
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As for being a writer, one look at the crumbling brick of the abandoned 13th century church is enough to inspire all kinds of words to paper. And its windows might be bricked up, but it doesn’t take too much of an imagination to envision what it looked like during the Middle Ages.
There are quite a number of old churches still in use around Barbing. My favorite is the bright ocher-colored Church of St. Martin in Illkofen.
Many of the town’s other churches kind of look a bit like St. Martin’s, but there’s only one that sticks out in my mind — maybe you’ll like St. Mary’s in Friesheim, or St. Laurentius in Elthem better.
Who knows, art and architecture are subjective, are they not? ;-)
There’s no debating the Sarchinger Weiher can be loved by everyone. The lake, open from 6am-11pm, is great for days and evenings of swimming, barbecuing, and beach volleyball fun.
If you really like the water, then hike around the Danube. The area’s known as the “smallest wine region in Germany,” so I guess that means hiking around the vineyards would be lovely as well.
History lovers might revel in knowing Friedrich Barbarossa, ruler of the Holy Roman Empire & King of Italy, stopped here during one of his Crusades campaigns. Sounds like a long time ago, doesn’t it? Well, how’s this for old, when doing some construction, prehistoric graves were found dating back 4,000-2,000 B.C. Makes you wanna dig around in the dirt to find something that incredible yourself, doesn’t it?
Not me, I’d rather hit up one of the theaters, or take in a music performance — for which there are plenty going on in Barbing.
I told you there’s more to Barbing than just one of Beethoven’s buddies. ;-)