What you’ll find when you visit the little town of Stein (English: Stone) is a Bavarian delight right in the heart of beautiful Middle Franconian countryside, that’s a fit for a Count with a kingdom created from pencils.
Graf von Faber Castell (19th century) was a pioneer in the pencil industry and his company (that’s still family owned) is a leader in luxury writing instruments (which is a nice way of saying it makes one heck of an incredible pen). If his home says anything about the quality of his pens and pencils then you’re in for something more special than you could imagine.
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Schloss Faber-Castell is a 19th century architectural wonder with the best of Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Art Nouveau, and Classicism styles all under one roof. You would think with all that going on it would be a bit too much, however, Schloss Faber-Castell is nothing short of breathtaking.
Count Faber-Castell’s castle remained in his family up until the 1930’s; it’s now a fantastic meeting center. There’s even a Faber-Castell Mining Museum here, too.
If you can tear yourself away from Schloss Faber-Castell (oh, it’ll be hard), you’ll find a myriad of walking paths in town with plenty of timber framed houses along the way. In fact, one of the oldest buildings (dating from around 1635) doubles as Stein’s local history museum. Even better, admission is freeeee! :-)
To make the most out of your time here try to come for the Steiner City Celebration held every May. Join the townsfolk celebrating this adorable town complete with music, food, and fun for the entire family.
If you’re not able to make one Stein’s festivals you’ll still be able to enjoy this awesome town anyway, well, because this is Franconia! Which means get outside and follow along any one of the Stein’s walking trails including a spiritual pilgrimage path known as Jacobs Way, or visit Stein’s outdoor Aquarium and Terranium (great for both kids and adults).
Of course, being so close to Nuremberg it’s tempting to head over there, but that won’t be necessary. You’ll find most of what you need right here.