Is there something in the water in Rheinau? Something that makes this place a wee bit different from the rest of Germany? Perhaps; but, isn’t “different” what makes the world go ’round? :-)
As Rheingau in the Upper Rhine Valley is also along the French border (close to Strasbourg) the shopping at the weekly Farmers Market on Fridays can be a real delight. Think of the freshest fruits, vegetables, and the most colorful of flowers. Don’t get too excited at all the other little odds & ends you’ll find — you might drop that bottle of wine you just bought.
Rheingau is proud to be a cultural town with some sort of cultural program going on every time you turn around. If you don’t speak German it MIGHT be a bit hard to understand the literary readings or the comedy acts; but fortunately, music has no language barrier.
For a more typical sightseeing experience in Rheingau, take a visit to the local history museum, historical St. Nikolaus Church, and the town’s Lutheran Church.
For a more atypical sightseeing experience, you’ve got the Jewish Cemetery in Freistett (1 of 9 local hamlets) with a World War I memorial, the Jewish Cemetery in Bischofsheim that has only one grave dating back to 1819 (it’s the smallest cemetery of its kind in the entire federal state).
The town of Rheingau even has something called a Friedwald, a forest cemetery using biodegradable urns that are buried under the trees.
There’s even the Fischtreppe for something different. This hydro-electric power station has a channel for salmon and other fish to bypassing the dam to get up- or down-stream.
Other outdoor activities in Rheingau include miniature golf, an 18-hole golf course, and a “Barefoot Run” course that works all the muscles of your feet and designed to take away stress. I guess it’s hard to hold on to daily stresses when you’re walking barefoot over grass and smooth stones.
I like the fact that Rheingau is a bit different from many other places in the world; and with all the European flights coming into the nearby Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden Airport — others all over the world think so, too.