NördlingenSwabia in the German state of Bavaria.
The city lies within the Ries Basin, a 25 km crater caused when a meteorite struck the earth 15 million years ago. This is one of the best preserved craters on earth, as well as being the only known rampart crater on the planet. It was used by US astronauts to train for the moon landing. In exchange for the use of the area, Nördlingen received moon rocks which are now on display in a museum in the city. Another effect of the meteor strike is that a locally quarried rock, which was used to build many of the older stone buildings, contains millions of tiny fragments of diamonds, as well as pieces of quartz and other rocks.
The city is surrounded by a wall, built in the 14th century, which follows the rim of the crater. In the center of the city is St Georgskirsche. From here, 5 main roads radiate to the wall, which has 12 gates.
The "official" first mention of Nördlingen comes in 898 CE when "Nordilinga" is used. The 1100th birthday festivities took place in 1998.
Nördlingen grew to prominence because of its importance in trade in the area. It was a Free City and the local fair was one of the most important in this region in the Middle Ages. Testimony to that can be seen in the numbers of houses and buildings which still exist that used to house tradesmen's goods or a market for their wares.
The town walls and fortifications had been built in the 14th century and Nördlingen was the site of a battle between Catholic and Protestant forces in the Thirty Years' War in the 17th century. Nördlingen eventually lost its independence and became part of Bavaria at the start of the 19th century and is now the administrative centre of the Donau-Ries area.
By trainNördlingen has
a railway stationNördlingen is on a regional rail line, which generally connects to the main rail hubs through the town of Donauwörth to the south.
Deutsche Bahn operates hourly train service to Munich (€21, 2 hours), Augsburg (€12, 1 hour), and Stuttgart (€18, 2 hours).
By busTouring Europabus operates daily service between all cities on the Romantic Road.
Verkehrsverbund Großraum Nürnberg (VGN) Regional Bus 501 operates between Nördlingen's Rathaus and Dinkelsbühl and Feuchtwangen with further connections to Nuremberg.
By footThe city is very small and can be covered by foot. The tourist offices runs daily tours in the summer at 2pm and 8:30pm for €3.
Radsport Bockleaddress: Remlinger Straße 19Rents bicycles for €8 per day.
St. GeorgskircheBuilt in 1499, it is one of the largest churches in Germany. Climb the 90m tower for the best views overlooking the city and the crater.
address: Eugene-Shoemaker-Platz 1Situated in an old barn, this museum shows the impacts of meteor collisions with earth. Moon rock, on loan from NASA, is on display.
address: behind the Hauptbahnhof100 trains on display. On Sundays in the summer, you can take a 2 hour return trip to Dinkelbuhl on an old-fashioned locomotive.
address: Vordere Gerbergasse 1Displays local costumes.
Stadtmauermuseum Nördlingenaddress: An der Löpsinger Mauer 3Shows the history of the wall surrounding the city.
Walk Along the City WallsThe city walls are completely preserved and available for touring. It represents the longest continuous walkable battlements in Germany. The fortification includes 11 towers and 5 gates. It takes about an hour and 2.6 km to circumnavigate the city.
Nördlinger Pfingstmesse14-day exhibition of local crafts, food, and beer.
phone: +49 9081 8056061address: Würzburger Straße 1
phone: +49 9081 86019address: Baldinger Straße 42
phone: +49 9081 87080address: Beim Klösterle 1It's a chain hotel, alright, but the location could be worse as could be the way it looks from the outside