Thursday, September 15, 2011

Reichsstadtmuseum Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Rothenburg is one of the most visited towns in Germany along the romantic road. Many people visit for a couple hours on bus tours. It is possible to get a tiny overview of the town in a couple hours. It is small and it is possible to cover most of the points of interest in a few minutes. Many people get off the tour bus and head straight for the gift shops. Rothenburg is a town that lives on the tourist trade and there seems to be a mix of everything you could want to be found along the main drag to the town square. You can find food, clothes, wood carvings, art work, wines and just about anything you can imagine. And within that mix are many hotels so you can stay a few days if you choose.
I stayed three weeks in Rothenburg and spent many pleasant days, even in the worst winter in decades, walking around the town. The old town holds five churches and five museums.
The Reichsstadtmuseum just a couple of blocks away from the town square has a lot of very interesting history artifacts about the town of Rothenburg and surrounding area. The museum is not on the main drag but if you have the time it is a place that should be visited.

To get to the Reichsstadtmuseum from the market square, with the Court House, Rathaus on your left side facing the clock there is an opening between the buildings that you walk through bear a little left then through the parking lot. St Jakobs church will be right in front of you. When you get to the street turn left and follow that street to the end of the church and then turn right. You’ll walk under the church as it forms an arch over the roadway. Walk two blocks and then turn again left past the houses and you’ll find yourself in a large parking lot on the right is the museum and the main entrance.
The museum at one time was a convent there are some well preserved rooms to indicate how the nuns lived at that time.  Be sure to check out their rooms and the kitchen.
This is a self guided tour and you can go at your own pace. If you are time limited use the self guide pamphlet and map to go directly to what interests you most.    When you walk away from the ticket counter turn left and in the hallway on the ground floor there is a video history of the town in several languages.  Press the button in your choice of languages to hear about the town.
I visited the museum in the winter and had to keep my jacket on while I toured. This seems to be the common practices as far as museums go. I’m pretty sure the cost of heating these large buildings can really dig into the operating expenses so just be forewarned.
If you wish to take photos you will be charged extra for the privilege and asked to sign a form that states you won’t use your photos commercially.

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