Gehrden knows that not everyone likes bats. However, as the town mascot, Gehdra is designed to be a friendly, smiling guide to all the area has to offer.
You’ll find her image on t-shirts, in tourist handouts, and leading the explanations at the major tourist stops. During festival days, a life-size costumed bat acts as a civic announcer.
Naturally, you can spot real Gehdras at the town’s premier landmark, St. Margaret’s church. The mascot is actually modeled on the small bats that live in the church’s tower. More than 500 years old, the church is open for tours, although you can’t climb up to disturb the bats!
Gehrden offers several additional architectural sites worth visiting. St.Bonifatius church is the newest, having been built in the neo-baroque style in 1911. It is known especially for its new organ, installed in the 1990’s.
On the outskirts of town, you will find the Struckmeyersche Mühle, a windmill that is almost 300 years old. It has an accompanying millers house and the opportunity for tours.
For simple views, you will want to hike from the Struckmeyersche to the Castle Hill Tower. With an observation deck more than 20 meters (60 feet) off the ground, it offers superior views over the surrounding country. Built in 1897, it was restored in 1985.
From the tower you can see all of the Tripische Park. Built in 1898 by the noted Hanover region landscape artist Julius Trip, the park is noted for its multiple levels. The stone stairs can be a bit of a workout, but the many picnic areas and walking trails are worth the climb.
Thus, if you are a fan of German architecture and landscaping, don’t let Gehrden’s bats scare you away. In fact, the summer concert programming is a fun time to see if you can get a photo with one of the locals dressed in bat costume! :-)