In northern Baden-Württemberg you’ll find an old city known as Eberbach that was once on an old trade route from historical Mannheim, Germany to the magical city of Prague, Czech Replublic. To think all Eberbach has to offer is selling this quaint town (and yourself) short, its long history only makes this place all the more interesting.
Castle Eberbach is a great place to start your journey, since it has stood here from the town’s beginnings. It has been abandoned since the 1400’s and the small arched doorways and six foot thick castle walls now blended in beautifully with the natural landscape, as trees and ivy have now grown through them. You’ll find that the castle has the most prime view of the city, as it sits high in the Odenwald.
In addition to Eberbach’s castle ruins, it’s proud of its many half timbered buildings (some from as far back as the 16th century), including the grand Bettendorf House. The Michaelskirche (with the Marien Chapel) dates a bit further back to the 15th century, and it’s most definitely also worth a look.
Eberbach’s Old Town is now a fantastic pedestrian district great for seeing all the standing medieval towers and shopping around the Old City. Much of the older neighborhood was destroyed by Allied bombing towards the end of WW II, but a number of historical buildings remain. The Pulverturm (Powder Tower), from the 15th century, is still part of the attachment on the original Stadtmauer (Fortification Wall).
One of the other remaining watchtowers is cutely named the “Blue Hat” and can be found at the southwestern end of what was once the old part of town. It’s older sister, the Rose Tower, has stood guard since the 1200’s. Oh… if walls could talk. What makes the Rose Tower more impressive and stunning is how its six foot thick walls are gracefully lined with ivy and make for a wonderful snapshot to take home.
Hopefully, you’ll be lucky enough to visit Eberbach during any of the festivals that the town hosts throughout the year. The Apfelfest, or Apple Day, is celebrated every October (a perfect autumn treat) and the Spring Festival is held every May. But, the best is the Kuckucksmarkt, the town’s folk festival on the last weekend in August, bringing partiers from all over the region.
No worries, if you come to Eberbach any other time of the year, you’ll surely still have a dandy good time. :-)