Germany Day Trips: Bacharach

by Shereece Spain
Stripes Europe

Today, it’s hard for many Americans to imagine living in towns or cities that are walled-off from the outside. These walls once protected the inhabitants from outsiders and afforded strategic positioning to defend themselves. Now, these cities make great destinations to explore for their architecture, history and romance.

There are many more well-known walled cities in Germany, like Rothenburg de ob Tauber. However, we’re fortunate enough to have the beautiful city of Bacharach in our proverbial backyard. As you emerge through the entrance known as Steeger Tor, the essence of the town will immediately surround you.

Wall to wall beauty

Located along the Rhine River, this quaint town offers picturesque views along the city’s wall. You can hike along Stadtmauer Rundweg, which surrounds the village. As you walk along the wall, be sure to stop and admire each Turm (tower), especially Postenturm. Perhaps, if they are open, you may venture to the top for an even better view. Have your camera ready for excellent photo ops of the river, stretches of vineyards and the village with its charming half-timbered buildings.

If you’re not up for hiking the wall, DE Bicycle Hire and Tours offers visitors another means of transportation and seeing the town. Either way you travel is sure to please.

Old-world at its finest

There is no shortage of medieval architecture to check out in this town. There’s Altes Haus (old house), which was built in 1368. You can enjoy the centuries-old building along with a good meal. Their menu may be limited, but they make up for it in the atmosphere and the overall experience.

St. Peter’s Church commands the skyline and your attention. Its simple elegance is so inviting that it makes for a perfect place to rest, pray or meditate. Don’t forget to gaze up at the exquisite organ!

Don’t let the term “ruins” hold you back from exploring city landmarks. There is beauty in the remains and fascinating stories to hear of a building’s past. What remains of Wernerkapelle’s remarkable red sandstone bricks and cloverleaf windows is nothing short of breathtaking.

What’s exploring a new-to-you German village without making a stop at the area castle? Bacharach actually offers two - Castles Stahleck and Stahlberg. Stahlberg may not be the most majestic exterior you will witness. However, it’s worth the trek up to see if for nothing more than the spectacular valley views. Beautifully restored Stahleck now serves as a youth hostel making Bacharach an excellent weekend getaway as well.

When it’s time to eat

One of the most popular restaurants is Bacharacher Hof Restaurant. The decor is classy without being stuffy. Their house specialty is Sauerbraten with red cabbage and potato noodles similar to gnocchi. Keep in mind the portion sizes are fairly big. However, they do offer a smaller entrée for smaller appetites and a generous kids’ menu.

Don’t barricade yourself in when exploring this beautiful country. Step outside the norm into the fascinating village of Bacharach!

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