Villages & Towns of Rhine Valley - Part 2 (RLP - Germany)

Continuing with more villages & towns, and about more places to see, things to do, castles, churches & monuments of the UNESCO Site of Upper Middle Rhine Valley. I've already written about Koblenz, Boppard and St.Goar in the earlier post, including a 360° view of the famous Loreley Rock.

OBERWESEL: Oberwesel means 'The Town of Wine & Towers' and it is! There are a whooping 17 towers and most restored well. Even the fortification walls have been restored and its possible to walk on them, along the railway line and its just a beautiful thing to do. This town has the most medieval feel to it. Infact every alternate year, a festival happens here called Mediaeval Spectaculum when the whole town goes back to living as in medieval times, with candles and lamps, dressed accordingly, with all modern building covered up! Next is on May 30 - Jun 1 2020.

Our first stop here was Günderrode house. This house was built overlooking the Rhine, as a prop for the shooting of the movie Heimat 3 directed by Edgar Reitz. The builders of this house, Ars Ligni GmbH, dismantled a historic house of 18th C and relocated it here to build this grunge looking house as a movie set! In course of time, the house became a small museum of the movie itself and has a little cafe too.
I was lucky enough to meet Sam, the blacksmith, as well, in Oberwesel! Watch the video from 8:58 as I chat with him. With so so so many castles being here, traditional blacksmithery is an important aspect of the renovation and restoration of these structures and that's where Sam, comes into the picture! Sam, is a blacksmith from Maine, USA who specializes in forging, one of the oldest type of metal working! He founded his own guild in Maine and does regular tours in Europe to learn other traditional techniques that are in the verge of getting lost and taking them to USA and passing on the traditions! He was here in Oberwesel for just 2 days when I happened to meet him!

Our last stop was at Historische Weinwirtschaft for dinner. This is such an adorable restaurant. The building is more than 500 years old and the restaurant itself was founded in 1986 by Iris Marx. Just like the castles, the walls are made of slate stone and the ceiling, wood! It was originally a home. So many of the things that belonged to the residents, decades ago, are still here. Infact, the bed frame, has been re-purposed as chairs! Decor included the age-old glass storage containers! Everything from the decor to the table arrangement, had the historical feel to it. The food was local and very very yummy!


BACHARACH: This is perhaps my favourite village in whole of the Upper Middle Rhine Valley. It is so incredibly picturesque! The lanes are narrow and some are even less than 1m long where I had to hold on to Atyudarini's leg (she was behind me in babywearing) to prevent the walls from scraping her legs!!!!


This village is so low that often, its roads used to get under water when Rhine floods! That's why, when railway line was constructed here, it was raised much above the, then ground level. Today, just beside the railway line is the original fortification wall of the town with 8 towers and parts of it belong to 16th C! There were quite a few 16th C houses still intact.


One of the iconic places in Bacharach is St. Werner's Church ruins. This is located atop the hill with a short flight of 99 steps. This was once a popular pilgrimage, as a stop-over for the pilgrims heading to Camino de Santiago in Spain. However during the 9 years war, in 1689, the bomb meant to destroy Castle Stahleck fell here and destroyed the church. All that's left here now are the ruins.

BINGEN: Like Koblenz, Bingen too is a large town and is bit touristy & busy! One of the most important feature of Bingen is the Chair-lift ride. The loop begins with a cable-car ride at Rudeshiem and drops you at the Monument of Germania. A short from there leads you to Jagdschloss Niederwald hotel, a former hunting lodge and from there, a chair-lift to Assmannshausen and a boat-ride back to Rudeshiem...

Bingen is known as the home of Hildegard. She was an abbess who lived in 1098-1179. She was one of the earliest woman to become an abbess and she founded monasteries for women. She wrote several scriptures about her visions, which included the medicinal values of plants, theological thoughts and even music!
That wraps up my list of the picturesque, gorgeous, must-visit towns & villages, the best towns to stay, in the banks of Rhine in Upper Middle Rhine Valley! Coming up soon about the Rhine river itself next week. Stay tuned!

To Get There:
On Google Maps: Günderrode houseHistorische WeinwirtschaftSt. Werner's Church ruinsRudesheim cable car (to visit Monument of Germania), Bingen local history museum  
All these sites can be accessed on foot from the ferry points, as well as railway stations of Oberwesel, Bacharach, Rudesheim & Bingen.

To Stay:
You could stay at Koblenz or Bingen which are big towns or any of the smaller towns or villages in that entire 67km for a more authentic experience.
Read my review of Bellevue Rheinhotel Boppard, where we stayed.

Entry Tickets & Timings:
Günderrode house, St. Werner's Church ruins: Free, Open 24 x 7
Cable Car + Monument of Germania + Chair lift + ferry connection (ring ticket): €15; 9:30AM to 4:00/7:00PM depending on season & weather.
Bingen Local History Museum: €3; Tue-Sun 10:00AM - 5:00PM

My complete Rhine Valley Travelogue: Rhine River cruiseKoblenz, Boppard, St.Goar, Oberwesel, Bacharach, Bingen

P.S: I was invited by UNESCO Germany to experience the region for review purposes, however the opinions are my own and this post does not to advertise the product/service.

Bhushavali

An ardent traveler by passion. I am a wanderlust.. Read more about me here.

18 comments:

  1. I drove most of the Rhine Valley through Germany but never heard of Oberwesel before. Would love to check out this charming tower with that tower on my next drive through this region (which is quite often as I drive to many European destinations from London).

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  2. So good to read more about the Rhine Valley. It is definitely a spot we want to visit. A town that means wine and towers seems like it would provide amazing sights and tastes too. The villages are indeed so picturesque. Good thing you did not visit when the Rhine was flooding! A chair-lift to Assmannshausen would be an amazing way to get a panoramic view.

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  3. I would love to spend some more time in the Rhine Valley discovering other villages and towns. The Mediaeval Spectaculum festival sounds amazing. I love the idea of pretending to go back to medieval times. Historische Weinwirtschaft seems like a great restaurant. That's so unique that the bed was changed into chairs!

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  4. Ahh the charming German villages! Oberwesel looks amazing mostly because of the super cute architecture of the houses, almost like a fairy tale. Bingen looks picturesque and green and it would be amazing to take a chair lift and enjoy the scenery below!

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  5. I love half timbered houses , this region looks so nice. It reminds me of Alsace in France. Good to know that the Rhine valley - Bingen sounds like somewhere I would like to visit in the near future!

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  6. All these villages and towns in Rhine Valley look like they come straight out of a fairy tale. So lovely! I especially find the Historische Weinwirtschaft restaurant in Oberwesel interesting - the fact that it is housed in a 500-year-old building and that everything there has a historical feel. How I'd love to experience a meal there!

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  7. I can't believe I've never been to this part of Germany! It looks so picturesque and lovely. I love the traditional Vakwerk buildings. That restaurant sounds incredible, especially with all the historical details.

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  8. I think somewhere that means wine and towers sounds like a place for me! The Rhine Valley looks quite beautiful. Bacharach especially, I can see why you like it best! Very lovely guide. Hopefully I can visit next year!

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  9. I really love to visit two things I found in your post: old cute villages and grapes fields. Those villages are just stunning and to be honest I can't believe it's in Germany and it's Unesco. I really need to visit it one day, putting on my bucket list.

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  10. Wow! What a picturesque view there! It makes me love to participate in their Mediaeval Spectaculum festival. I'd love to stroll around the village taking some fresh air enjoying the view too.

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  11. The town of Oberwesel looks exotic with its 17 towers and medieval feelings to it. I think it's a must see along the Upper Middle Rhine Valley. I wonder how it looks like inside the Gunderrode House. So tiny! I found Bacharach my favorite, too from your article. The town is just beautiful with its gorgeous houses and landscape. Definitely will put this trip when we go to Germany.

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  12. There is a certain charm which old medieval buildings exude. Mediaeval Spectaculum sounds so exciting. I always wondered how it must feel like to travel back in time. I had no idea that you can actually do it in a recreated setting! Bacharach seems like my kind of place. I would love to lose myself in the narrow lanes of this charming village. As always, your blog guided me towards some offbeat travel experiences which no one talks about.

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  13. This looks like such a beautiful part of Germany! Bacharach looks so mellow and green, and that's fascinating that some of the walkways are so narrow. I think I'd have to check out as many towers as I could in Oberwesel, too! That's really cool that you met a blacksmith from America who is keeping this ancient art form alive. Also, the dinner you had at Historische Weinwirtschaft looks amazing! What exactly are they, dumplings?

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  14. These villages are so charming! I would love to take part in Mediaeval Spectaculum, as a member of a historical reenactment group I love this kind of festivals :D Not to mention the chance to visit all the medieval towers in Oberwesel and see the traditional blacksmithery. The Rhine valley is definitely a place worth to visit.

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  15. There's plenty of stuff that I'd love to see in this itinerary, but I think I'm most tempted to visit that restaurant in Historische Weinwirtschaft! Thanks for continuing to cover those lesser known spots!

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  16. Oberwesel gives a vibe of Disney's Beauty and the Beast village. And BACHARACH looks picture-perfect indeed. Glad that you got a chance to meet the blacksmith Sam and witness the traditional blacksmithery. Also, curious to know about the holidays celebration?

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  17. Wow that's a long route to take in order to reduce your carbon footprint, well done, I am impressed! Texel looks like an interesting place to visit for the weekend, I would also love to rent a bicycle and ride to the villages. The countryside looks super, and Strandpaviljoen sounds like a great beach destination with the beach huts and all.

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  18. So amaze to read about this valley. I would love to visit this place for sure. Such a great destination to enjoy with friends and family. Thanks for sharing this article. Keep blogging!

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