It almost starts off like a bad joke — a botanist and the Pope walk into a bar…
No, I’m just kidding about the bar part, but in the town of Pentling you might find it interesting that this place is the former stomping grounds of David Heinrich Hoppe and Pope Benedict XVI.
Like the scenery of the Upper Palatinate here? Thank Mr. Hoppe for that — he was instrumental in establishing the nature area surrounding the neighboring city of Regensburg. He also established the first ever Botanical Garden in the area. The Hoppefelsen is a monument in his honor. Rightfully deserved, I might add.
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The nature area around the region is great for bird watching, or just a scenic bike ride throughout Pentling’s 18 districts.
As for Benedict XVI, he used to live here back when he was “just” Joseph Ratzinger (he did make a visit as Pope, too). Located at Bergstraße 6, his former home can still be visited.
That might seem like a long time ago, but it’s a mere blip in Pentling’s long history. This place has seen people living here before the Bronze Age — and one of Pentling’s oldest villages is Poign. I don’t think it has changed much, as you’ll find the area quite tranquil amongst its farms.
Some of the town’s other villages and hamlets are just as picturesque. Seedorf is a village of wide open spaces and graceful religious statues. Hohengebraching is a farming town, with its own village church too.
One of Pentling’s oldest churches is found in Graßlfing, built around the year 1200. Now that I think about it, Graßlfing is probably the oldest, as folks have called it home for the last 10,000 years.
FYI, if you want a castle, you’re going to have to look a bit hard. I’m sorry to say that nothing remains of the 14th century Burgstall Pentling.
Nonetheless, this town is all sorts of modern, and a far cry from its war ravaged days after the Thirty Years’ War — when there were just 12 people left.
Today hundreds, if not thousands, flock to Pentling for its Easter Market and May Day Celebrations. Then you’ve got all the people flowing into town for its winter activities like sledding and skiing.
While it might seem as if Pentling starts off as an odd joke, it ain’t anything but seriously historic and a wonderful place to be, no matter who you are.