When is a city not a city? When it’s Riedstadt.
Well, it actually is a city located not more than a half hour from Frankfurt and a couple minutes from Darmstadt. It’s the combined independent communities of Crumstadt, Erfelden, Goddelau, Leeheim, and Wolfskehlen from ages long gone.
Much has happened to these communities through the years and each one has a story onto itself; Erfelden for example, dates back some 1200 years to 779 A.D. Leeheim goes back further to 766, while Wolfskehlen is the new kid on the block going back to 1022. Geddelau was small with less than 200 residents living there back in the 1500s.
Riedstadt is the birthplace of George Büchner, the famous writer and revolutionary, born in 1813 in a half-timbered house originally built in 1665. The house still stands to this very day.
Riedstadt has its own nature preserve, Kuhkopf-Knoblochsaue, where you can choose to bird watch or do something a bit more active, like canoeing if you’re the ambitious type. If you rather take a more leisurely approach, take a tour of the nearby Nierstein Winery. You can’t go wrong since Germany makes so many fine wines.
What makes Riedstadt so special besides its history is that it is so centrally located to so many sites throughout Hesse. A jaunt to see Mathildenhöhe with its exhibition halls and wedding tower. What a great way to spend an afternoon.
Located not too far from Riedstadt but definitely worth the trip is Frankenstein’s Castle. Yes, that Frankenstein Castle. It was originally built in the 10th century, but what you see today was mostly built in the 14th and 15th centuries.
With all there is to see and do around this town, maybe you might consider relaxing with a leisurely stroll or sitting for a refreshing cup of tea around the market square. And with all the history that surrounds Riedstadt and its most advantageous location, you may even wish to stay in this tiny suburb. ;-)