By Anna Kerr
Our grandparents took us on a medieval adventure, to go see Rothenburg and Nürnberg. Our first stop was Rothenburg. We wanted to go there for its medieval charm and fascinating history. We would only be in each city for one night. After a two-hour drive from Frankfurt, we arrived. The hotel was very nice and from the outside it looked very old.
Discover Through Wandering
At first glance, the small, walled city looked very picturesque and full of history. First thing we did was just wander. We walked around for a good chunk of the day, discovering a path to walk along the famous wall, seeing cute houses, and even discovering a Scottish shop. It was funny seeing a Scottish shop in Germany. We went in, and we talked to the guy a little bit about our Scottish last name, Kerr. He knew about our clan, which I would kind of expected, but it was still kind of cool. A lot of the shops had this really cool font displaying the name of the shop which was also nice. Eventually, Alex found a sword shop which surprisingly I enjoyed too. There was a book to write with a quill pen and ink, and I found it so fun to write in.
We then saw the torture museum [officially called the Medieval Crime and Punishment Museum]. Rothenburg was one of the few cities that was never destroyed, certain buildings dating back to 1500. The Medieval Crime Museum was very grim but pretty interesting. We were all so happy that these ways no longer existed and that we live in the 21st century. Teens will probably find this the most interesting, certainly those who find history interesting. What was cool to look at was the shame masks. They would use these metal masks and put them on women who talked too much or spread rumors, which is terrible; but the masks themselves were kind of clever. Depending on what the women talked about, they must wear a specific mask. If some lady spread rumors, then she would probably wear a mask with a tongue because she couldn’t hold her tongue.
Learning from the Night Watchman
My favorite part was the Night Watchman tour. A man, who was acting as a night watchman, took us through the town, by giving us some history and explaining a night watchman’s job back then. He took us to random spots around the town and told us a little bit about some of the houses there. One thing I found interesting was this house with a royal family back in the 1500’s and the same family line still lived in that house, which was very impressive. He also told us about how many times Rothenburg would have been destroyed but was saved just barely. For example, the city was supposed to be bombed, but on that day it was so foggy and cloudy the planes couldn’t see clearly so if I remember correctly, they only hit one tower which was rebuilt extremely quickly. If y’all ever go there I definitely recommend this tour, since it was summer it wasn’t dark but the sunset was gorgeous.
The food was great there. We had some great Italian food that was a minute away from our hotel, and then for dinner some classic German food, including spargel (which is white asparagus) and schnitzel.
Editor’s Note: If you are looking for specifics on planning a trip to Rothenburg, check out Because Germany. Her kids are a bit younger, but she has done a great job of helping you map out your trip.
All other photos ©Linda Kerr, TravelTeening