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When it comes to charming, untouched towns, Germany has an embarrassment of riches. One standout is historical Hann Münden, which is pretty much smack dab in the middle of the country and well worth the journey for anyone who appreciates authentic Bavarian food, impressive old buildings and wandering through quiet, picturesque cobblestone streets.
Built on the banks of a fast-flowing river which once drove the town’s economy, Hann Münden is now most famous for its half-timber houses. One quickly realizes they also happen to be crooked, as many were constructed from oak which rotted out over time, causing the supportive beams to heave.
The result has been a remarkable collection of homes lining the narrow laneways, which are accented with bright flower boxes and old fashioned lanterns. The main streets are just as attractive thanks to their traditional signs, welcoming visitors into the shops and restaurants to pick up souvenirs or sip a crisp Riesling.
One of the best spots to soak in the ambience is in the main plaza, which is anchored by the town hall and a beautiful cathedral.
A beautiful example of renaissance architecture, the town hall was built in the 1600s and is now home to exhibitions, the tourist information centre and a fantastic hall with stunning timber beams. The facade on entrance outside is also not to be missed.
One of the most impressive buildings in the entire town is St. Blaise’s Church, which features intricate stonework leading up to a steeply-slanted, bright-orange roof. An octagonal tower looks down on the square below, and visitors are also welcome to tour the tomb inside.
Once one has fully explored the winding laneways throughout Hann Münden, there is one last order of business: heading back out to the river. The vantage point from the stone bridge just outside of the walls that surround the town are simply breathtaking, with lush green hillsides and foliage framing the slanted orange roofs topping the colourful building facades. That imagery alone is worth the trip to Hann Münden, but it’s the thrill of feeling like you’re stepping back in time that makes it worth staying.
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