Inviting Würzburg and the German Love of Pretzels

Picturesquely situated in a river valley surrounded by vine-draped hills, and boasting one of Germany’s most enjoyable palaces (the prince-bishop’s Residenz), the bustling little city of Würzburg is well worth checking out.

Many travelers zip from the Rhine directly to Rothenburg without considering a stop in Würzburg. But those folks miss out on a tourist-friendly town that’s easy to navigate by foot or streetcar. While the town isn’t quite “charming” (thanks to its unmistakable post-WWII-rebuild vibe), Würzburg’s old center is quiet and people-friendly, and filled with atmospheric wine bars.

While you’re here, be sure to stroll the city’s atmospheric old bridge. Lined with stone statues, surrounded by vineyard-laced hills, and with a stout fortress looming overhead, it feels like a low-rent version of Prague’s famous Charles Bridge.

A park-like, picnic-perfect stretch of riverbank stretches from the old bridge to the crane. There are plenty of benches and a long, inviting, concrete embankment to spread out your meal. It comes with beer-drinking students, the down-and-out collecting their bottles, and great views of the river, bridge, and castle.

Wurzburg-sunset-on-river.jpgWhile busily checking out restaurants for my guidebook, I had to pause and appreciate this amazing Würzburg view. While the view itself — with Würzburg’s river and fortress glowing in the setting sun — was striking, what capped it off was the conviviality of the people enjoying the setting.


Pretzels-from-heaven.jpgThe Germans really, really love their various breads and pretzels. And this is nothing new. In fact, in this Gothic church’s stained-glass window, when God sends Moses and the Israelites manna from heaven, it comes in the form of divine pretzels.


Wurzburg-pretzels.jpgGerman marketing can be uniquely eye-catching. While most men find that this woman’s cleavage draws their eyes to the pretzels, many German men might say that the pretzels draw their attention to the cleavage.