To say that Pößneck is an interesting place would be an understatement. One might call this Thuringian town down right pretty, but it’s also filled with many wonderful old medieval buildings. Yet, the humble town of Pößneck is actually a movie star.
One of the best places to start your visit here is its City Hall. This magnificent 15th century building is considered to be one of the most beautiful in all of Thuringia. Plus it’s where you’ll find the City Museum, great for learning more of what’s to be found around town.
City Hall sits right on the Market Square many of its medieval wells. The square is the center of many other old half-timbered buildings, giving it a wonderful Old World charm. You’ll also find some wonderful sculpture art along the Well Route, designed in the 19th century by the son of a former mayor.
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What’s a medieval town without a medieval church? Good thing you’ll find two here. The God Field Church was built in 1300 and used as a cemetery church sometime in the 16th century and now an exhibition center.
But, it’s most likely going to be the City Church that catches your attention. St. Bartholomäus was originally built in 1280 and has undergone a few facelifts over the centuries, from Romanesque to Gothic. It’s THE church for the art history lover.
Another way to appreciate Pößneck is atop Der Weiße Turm, or The White Tower. Standing over 90 feet high, the tower was originally attached to the town’s Stadtmauer (City Wall) and used to hold prisoners before their “demise.” Be happy to know that it’s possible to visit its observation tower without worrying about being sent off to the gallows afterwards. ;-)
Make sure you take the time to see the nearby Leuchtenburg, or Light Castle. This menacing fortress, that was built around the year 1200, stands high on the mountainside. It’s nothing, if not beautiful, and houses a lovely little museum that even explains the region’s viticulture (that’s wine growing), so be prepared to imbibe on some of the locally grown stuff. There’s a super fun castle festival held here annually with lots of food, beer, and more wine.
In the 20th century, Pößneck was once part of a divided Germany, East Germany to be more precise. In September 1979 two families, the Strelzyks and Wetzels, made a daring dash for the West in a homemade hot-air balloon. In the dark of night eight people (4 adults/4 children) flew 18 miles to freedom, eventually landing in Naila, Bavaria. Besides having their balloon saved for posterity at the Nailer City Museum, Disney made a movie of their daring escape from the Eastern Block, making Pößneck a movie star (Night Crossing, 1982).
Now with a reunified Germany, you can just come visit without having to make any mad dashes for the border. ;-)