A leaning tower, the supposed tomb of Dracula, masks of ghosts and witches, a six-hundred-year-old bridge, half-timbered houses, historical charm next to modern elegance and a place to dream. Plus a picnic basket full of delicacies and a good glass of wine.
From May to October, Thursdays to Sundays, the Stadt-Schoppen is held on the Kitzingen town balcony. Wine enjoyment in the midst of the flowering grounds of the garden show. But the tour is also worthwhile on other days.
The Kitzingen picnic basket can be picked up five hours in advance at the
- Bayrischer Hof, Herrenstr. 2, 97318 Kitzingen, Tel: 09321 1440,
- Hotel Deutsches Haus, Schmiedelstr. 5, 97318 Kitzingen, Tel: 09321 91690 or at the
- Casa Konrad, Marktstr. 18, 97318 Kitzingen, Tel: 09321 1307620.
The Deutsche Haus is close to the station and both restaurants are just before the tour destination. So you have your hands free during the city walk and refreshments are provided at the end.
A city walk for connoisseurs and discoverers
Start and end station
4 km / 6 Stunden
Our tip: Please make sure to check your train connection and the expected capacity before you start your journey.
Tour starts on Kitzingen Bahnhof
After leaving the station, follow Friedrich-Ebert-Straße. The road leads past the Rose Garden and the Old Cemetery. There is a suitcase memorial at the Rosengarten. It commemorates the 204 Jewish citizens of Kitzingen who were murdered in extermination camps during National Socialism.
The Old Cemetery of Kitzingen was established in 1542 because the original "Gottesacker" was no longer sufficient. Even today, there are richly decorated graves from the 18th and 19th centuries. For example, the baroque grave of the Herold family repeatedly inspired young people to dare over the years. A local myth claims that the tomb houses Count Dracula's coffin and remains. The tomb is conspicuously decorated with motifs of death.
In front of you, you can already see the Falter Tower with its leaning spire.
Falterturm - landmark of Kitzingen
The Falterturm is not home to the city's butterfly collection, the name derives from "fall gate". The round tower was built at the end of the 15th century as part of the outer defences. It had a counterpart in a somewhat smaller shape. Both towers flanked one of Kitzingen's five town gates, a drop gate. It was accessible via a bridge that led over the moat, which has since been filled in. The smaller tower was demolished in the 19th century, as was most of the old town fortification. The Falterturm is 52 metres high and has seven storeys, on which the exhibits of the Fastnachtmuseum were displayed until 2011. Since then, it has been closed for fire protection reasons.
The leaning spire has given rise to all kinds of speculation. One legend claims that the once straight tower bowed down to the bride at the wedding of a councillor's son. Another says that due to a water shortage during the construction of the spire, the mortar was mixed with wine, but the builders could not resist the temptation and drew from the wine barrels mainly for their own "thirst". Thus, the spire is said to have been set askew in the wine intoxication.
The structural explanation seems more realistic, according to which there was subsidence and sagging in the masonry, with which the spire tilted, but which does not represent a static risk.
After a few metres on Falterstraße, turn into Luitpoldstraße and you will see the architecturally interesting building of the German Carnival Museum and the Carnival Academy next to it on your left.
German Fastnacht Museum
Enchanting, colourful, rich in tradition, cheerful, poetic, magical, modern, historical, multi-layered and unique. These attributes all apply to the German Carnival Museum. It is the official museum of the German Carnival Federation and has been in existence for 55 years. Since 2013, it has been located in the new rooms in Luitpoldstraße.
In a very lively way, the museum offers an insight into historical, even medieval customs surrounding Shrovetide and the carnival season. And you don't just travel back in time, you also learn how international the rite of masquerading and reversing and exchanging socially defined roles is on a few days a year. The collection of old masks and costumes is unique and, of course, witches' or devils' costumes seem spooky. The carnival rites mostly have their origins in Christian mysticism.
A special part of the permanent exhibition is the media room theatre, in which historical masks and costumes are allowed to "ghost around" and talk about themselves in a little virtual debate.
At Königsplatz you will see the obelisk made of red sandstone, which was erected in the 19th century in honour of Ludwig II. Turn far right into Schweizergasse, which will take you to Marktstraße and Kitzingen's market square. In this area you will find two of the picnic basket vendors, where you can pick up the basket you may have ordered and head towards the town balcony with it.
The walkway has a number of sights in store.
The town hall was built in 1563 in Renaissance style, according to plans by Hans Eckart von Schaffhausen. The historic meeting hall is particularly worth seeing. Next to the town hall, the market tower rises 39 metres high. As part of the inner city wall, it once served as a watchtower and prison. Today it houses the central archive of the German carnival.
The St. Kilian's Fountain dates from the 18th century and pays tribute to St. Kilian, an Iro-Scottish missionary bishop who is revered as an apostle of Franconia.
From the market square you have a view of Kitzingen's Protestant town church, which was first consecrated in 1699.
Your way towards the bridge over the Main leads past the Conditorei Museum, which is certainly worth a visit. It is located in the "Poganietz House", one of the oldest town houses in the town.
The Old Main Bridge was first mentioned in 1300, but at that time it was still a wooden structure. In the course of the Middle Ages, it was gradually converted into a stone bridge. The renovation of the bridge at the beginning of the 16th century took 100 years. At that time, there was still a bridge tower, a bridge gate and the "snack basket", which was used to dip fruit thieves into the Main as punishment. Today, the bridge connects the old town of Kitzingen with the district of Etwashausen and takes you to the former garden show grounds and the town balcony, where you can enjoy your picnic with a romantic view of the old town.
Garden show grounds, city balcony and city pub
The city balcony is part of the Kitzingen Garden Show grounds. The Small Garden Show took place in 2011 under the motto "Garden City on the River". For this, the park was created along the Etwashäuser Main bank and is now a green oasis near Kitzingen's city centre. The city balcony is a popular picnic spot. During the summer months, the town pub (Stadtschoppen) is held weekly on the wooden deck, from Thursday to Sunday. Every week, a different vintner from Franconia awaits the guests to present selected wines.
The winegrowers' association Winzergemeinschaft Franken, based in Kitzingen, is also represented every week with its wines. This is a great way to relax, with a glass of wine in your hand, a good picnic and a wide view over the Main. According to the legend of Kitzingen's founding, this is where Princess Hadeloga's veil was carried across the river by the wind. The young woman is said to have been so enchanted by the beauty of the landscape that she decided to found a monastery here. The foundation stone was to be laid where the veil was carried by the wind. A shepherd named Kitz found the cloth and the place was named Kitzingen in his honour.
The town is almost 1300 years old. From the town balcony you have a good view of the panorama of today's old town. Mighty willows provide cooling shade on hot summer days. Between fields of perennials and groups of trees are play islands that give pleasure to children and adults alike. The entire garden show area is freely accessible all year round.
Tour ends on Kitzingen Bahnhof
The way back this time, safely well-sunned and fortified, takes you along the inner-city bank of the Main, on the Unterer Mainkai. At the Old Synagogue, turn right onto Landwehrstraße. The Old Synagogue is now used for cultural events. The restored building was reopened in 1993. It also houses a library with works on Judaism. The original synagogue, built in 1883, was burnt down during the pogrom night in 1938. A prayer room commemorates this.
You now make your way back through the city centre to the station.