If you love skiing, sledding, and just about any other winter activity you’re gonna be smitten with Schmitten. You’ll also be smitten with Schmitten if you’re a huge history buff. Then again, if you just appreciate fantastic countryside with mountain peaks in the distance, you’ll be smitten with Schmitten, too.
Mostly, people who come to Schmitten for day trips, as there aren’t too many hotels or guesthouses within town. Big deal that Schmitten doesn’t have too many places of overnight accommodation. This Hessian town is pretty awesome, so it’s easy to cut the town some slack! ;-)
Cuz of Schmitten’s location within the classy Taunus Mountains, this area is ideal for skiing, sledding, and even tobogganing; especially in the Oberreifenberg area.
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But, if you’re here in the warmer months there is kilometer upon kilometer of walking and bicycling paths (including mountain biking trails) to tackle.
For a historical look at Schmitten, you have your choice of castles or Romans. No, sorry, no choice — have a look at both! ;-)
Schmitten used to be on the border of the Roman Empire; and the Limeskastell Kleiner Feldberg are the foundations of one of their forts.
Next stop: castles! Sorry, I should say castle ruins! The ruins of Castle Hattenstein is the older of the castle ruins in the town. It was built around the mid-12th century, destroyed in 1467.
The other castle ruin is Burgruine Reifenberg. This castle was built not too much after Burg Hattenstein, although it stood much longer — not destroyed until 1689. Destroyed or not, it still makes a dramatic background for the town’s festivals and concerts that are held here.
It’s time now to go from the medieval to the 20th century. Schmitten once had a bustling Jewish community, with a synagogue built in 1844. It was destroyed on Kristallnacht in November 1938, then totally demolished in 1955. You’ll find a memorial to the town’s community at the old Jewish cemetery (which was used from the 1820’s until 1935) on Synagogenstraße.
Despite having a tad bit of a dark history, Schmitten is a great town for everyone. I know you’ll just be smitten with Schmitten!