With its 11,300 inhabitants Rothenburg can perhaps boast that it is the best-known small town in Germany. A stroll along the narrow streets of the town is like leafing through a thick history book - just not as boring, as German history meets the visitor with every step.
The origins of the town go back to the 10th century and you can still find gates, towers and giant walls from this period. In the Middle Ages Rothenburg ranked among the most powerful towns in the south of the region, but in the Thirty Years’ War (1618-1648) political influence and wealth declined. The story goes that in 1613 Mayor Nusch rescued the town from enemy destruction by drinking a three litre glass (101 fl. oz.) of wine in one go. He could not know that with this "Master Draught" (Meistertrunk) he would lay the foundations for tourism in Rothenburg.
With half a million overnight stays - more than half of these are from abroad - tourism is the most important pillar of the economy. So with a total of three thousand beds in all price categories, visitors can find a room to suit. Why shouldn't they feel at home, where kings and emperors have already slept? The particular allure of this medieval town lies in the contrast between life in the romantic surroundings and the internationalism and modern comfort of a typical modern tourist town.