We should try to hold on to the Christmas spirit, not just one day a year but all 365″

Mary Martin

There is nothing more beautiful and more encouraging than the Christmas season, all about giving and nothing about getting back. It is making us being born again, rebuilding our hope in humanity and empowering our spirituality. I am keeping the Christmas within my heart all year long but there is one cute town, in Germany, that lives on Christmas mood too, every single day, for years. 

Have you ever heard for Rothenburg ob der Tauber? If you not, I will bring you there on my magical carpet of narration, letting you experiencing the Christmas Carol, your own story of 1000 wonders. If you have already been there, you know its time to visit this old Bavarian Imperial City again.

Rothenburg ob der Tauber is one amazing historical pearl that makes an unforgettable  portray of Germany. It is written that this town is one of the best-preserved medieval towns in the whole Europe, one of the most beautiful stops on the country’s Romantic Road tourist route and the one with unspoken legends and tales from the past. Sometimes, it seems that Rothenburg still sleeps on the memories from 16th century, embracing the present through the cracks of its walls and breathtaking buildings. 

However, the book of Rothenburg ob der Tauber leads us even back to 10th century, with the first known castles and settlements in the defensible position.  After the original rulers died out, the town came into the hands of the Hohenstaufen Emperors of Germany, who started shaping the town in the  12th century.  The complete construction of this town has been done in the next century and Rothenburg has been known as a Free Imperial City.  In spite of glamorous picturesque image nowadays, this town has experienced painful conflicts, terrible religious wars and intrigues among royal members. It seems that every scream and tear has been built up in the silent walls of this adorable Christmas town.  If we only think of the famous bloody Peasants’ War, we can not avoid dark thoughts about mass executions on the market place, in the name of greed, God or Satan. There is one historical article that describes the Legend of the Meistertrunk:”
The subsequent Thirty Years’ War gave the legend of the ‘Meistertrunk’ to Rothenburg – the town mayor is supposed to have quaffed a massive tankard of local wine as part of a bet to save the Protestant town from pillaging by Catholic forces. In fact, the town was forced to pay a massive amount of money and goods as a bribe to pay off the opposing forces after pleas from the children and womenfolk of the town.”

The whine from Rothenburg has a taste of ancient times but all the Christmas stores, placed around the inner side of the town are telling us the story of Christmas love, hope and belief. If happens and you find yourselves lost in the timeless Rothenburg, you may enjoy all sorts of delicious cookies in little bakeries, the family shops with traditional handmade art and the light of the future. The bad vibes have never been welcomed in this charming town, very well famous for its adorable Christmas village named 
Käthe Wohlfahrt museum. Actually, the founder of this company was 
Wilhelm Wohlfahrt,her husband,  an East German, who started the whole concept, trying to make American soldiers feeling Christmas, so far away from home. The first stores of this kind have been opened in region of American base, nearby Stuttgart, but after some time, they moved their company into Rothenburg, merging their corporative dreams with the  fantasy of the town. The brand has been born because since then, 
Käthe Wohlfahrt tradition of Christmas gifts have made happy thousands of visitors and road walkers. 

The town has a great energy that is inviting globetrotters from all over the world, informing about the importance of this place and its value on the international map of fairytale destinations. From ancient 
St. Jacob’s Church, completed in 1485, through the Plönlein or Little Square, colored with authentic German architectural style, to The Castle Gardens, Rothenburg ob der Tauber is emananting the charismatic beauty that make us wishing to stay there forever, forgetting all problems and believing that all will be good, at the end of the day. 

The gastronomy of Rothenburg is very advanced due to the high level of international tourists, especially Americans.  The first practical  question is :where to stay and where to eat ? First of all, the idea about booking your accommodation on time, before busy season,  helps you a lot if you do not want to end up paying too much for an ordinary place, only because you haven’t been fast enough. The “Golden Griffin” is definitely one of a kind, in the middle of the old town, with its own history that lasts almost 650 years. It is almost the sixth generations of innkeepers that try to preserve the traditional value of this object and to adjust it to the modern needs. The hotel itself is a small Rothenburg, allowing its guest to jump into the time machine and experience the first roots of the Christmas town. 

Every single hotel or restaurant is touched with history and that is why Rothenburg ob der Tauber lives its dream from the first day of its creation. It is like the romantic train into the blessed past, protected from evil of the present time.  About 2, 5 million people visit each year, trying to recall the medieval attraction of Rothenburg. Some of them visit Rothenburg Medieval Crime and Punishment Museum while others simply wander through the old streets, or climb to the Town Hall, capturing the precious view from above.  There are those who shop, let their thousands of dollars in this city and leaving it, injected with great hope, creative energy and new spirit. It is all about Rothenburg ob der Tauber and its wonderful spirit.  Wherever we go or wherever we live, Rothenburg goes with us and stay forever. 



  1. Sarah’s enchanting and informative article induced me to consider the Christ Mass in Rothenburg ob der Tauber during the 1930s and 1940s; that is, how the Christian people of the citadel experienced the Christian festival during a period of extensive societal change in Germany.

    For the hierarchy of Der Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (i.e. The National Socialist German Workers’ Party [NSDAP]), Rothenburg ob der Tauber was a very significant place for NSDAP domestic policies associated with ‘German cultural identity’. Throughout the 1930s, the NSDAP organisation ‘Kraft durch Freude’ (i.e. Strength through Joy) manifested trips to Rothenburg ob der Tauber for Germans from all across Germany. This was encouraged and supported by the citizenry of the citadel, which was openly-sympathetic to the NSDAP (i.e. for its economic initiatives).

    During the 1930s, the Christ Mass festival in Rothenburg ob der Tauber was used by the NSDAP to further marginalize and ostracise the Jewish-German citizens of the location: in October of 1938, the Council of the citadel expelled all Jewish-German citizens from the area.

    The NSDAP anti-Judaic ideology was greatly-embraced by the Christian German citizens of Rothenburg ob der Tauber; most of whom did not recognise Y’shua bar Yossef (i.e. Iesus Nazarenus) as a Jew (i.e. Christianity is a sect of Judaism). Rothenburg ob der Tauber represented the quintessential elements of NSDAP ideology and epitomised the Party hierarchy’s attempt to expand NSDAP societal changes throughout the entire country and beyond.

    In March of 1945, the US-military bombed Rothenburg ob der Tauber, and the then US-Assistant Secretary of War, John J. McCloy, put forward a plan to disable the local German military with minor damage to the historical edifices of the citadel. The horrific Allied bombings of Dresden (February of 1945) influenced US-military policy makers to focus on strategic bombings, while trying to impact as little as possible on the cultural/historical aspects of the Germans.

    US-Private Lichey (who spoke fluent German and served as a military interpreter) said to the defending German ground forces of Rothenburg ob der Tauber ‘We bring you an offer to spare the city of Rothenburg from shelling and bombing, if you agree not to defend it. ’ The local German military commander, Major Thömmes, surrendered the town; ignoring the order of Adolf Hitler for all German towns to fight to the end.

    In 1948, John J. McCloy was named an honorary citizen (German, Ehrenbürger) of Rothenburg ob der Tauber by the Council. After the war, he served as president of The World Bank, US-High Commissioner for Germany, chairman of The Chase Manhattan Bank, and chairman of The US-Council on Foreign Relations. Therefore, he was significant for post-war reconstruction in Rothenburg ob der Tauber.

    The people of Rothenburg ob der Tauber were ashamed of their treatment of the Jews, and the citizens worked towards establishing good relations with both Holocaust survivors and Jews in general. When Israel became a country in 1948, the event was acknowledged by the Council of Rothenburg ob der Tauber.

    The original spirit of good will to all people returned to the Christ Mass festival in Rothenburg ob der Tauber.


  2. What a beautiful and heartwarming article, Sarah !

    The most important message in your story, herein, in that everyone should keep the Christmas spirit throughout the year ! Over the years, I have observed how people, in general, though not all, are nicer, or at least not as mean, around this time of year ! Sadly, within a few days, they revert to their old ways and to being themselves !

    Sarah, you have made this town sound so enticing to me, and I am sure, to all readers of this lovely article ! It makes me feel like visiting it this second, leaving all problems behind and delving into a frozen time zone !

    Thank you, Sarah, for this sentimental and romantic article ! It has touched my heart ! As always, the concomitant illustrations are perfect ! God bless you, always !


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About Sarahowlgirl1982

I am a master of Political Sciences, with special focus on Security Studies, Islamic Counter Terrorism and Weapons of Mass Destruction. I enjoy discovering and commenting things which are " in the air" but still not spoken.I also do like science writing and planing to move myself into the pure science journalism !