The Cutest German Towns to Visit

Cutest Towns to Visit in Germany, Rothenberg ob der Tauber
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While the big cities of Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt and Cologne might be the most popular destinations for tourists, Germany also boasts some of the most charming medieval small towns in Europe. Here is our pick of the cutest German towns that should be on your travel itinerary.

The Cutest German Towns to Visit:

The Cutest German Towns, Cochem

@sarahjoyce82

10. Cochem

Cochem is an idyllic riverside little town that is famous for its towering, romantic castle built in the 11th century. The setting looks like something straight out of a fairytale, with photo opportunities at every turn.

Nearest major city: Cologne 

The Cutest German Towns to Visit, Meissen

@jmshackleford

9. Meissen

Located just 25 km north of Dresden, romantic little Meissen is built along the banks of the River Elbe. It is famous for its porcelain production, it’s medieval castle that looks down onto the city and for its surrounding vineyards.

Nearest major city: Dresden

The Cutest German Towns You Should Visit, Quedlinberg

@pawelgacek

8. Quedlinburg

Could Quedlinburg be any more charming? This tiny town is located just north of the Harz mountains in still evokes the Middle Ages today. Quedlinburg fortunately survived the war undamaged and is one of Germany’s best preserved medieval renaissance towns and has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This town has an impressive political history, having been ruled by aristocratic women for 800 years as a semi-independent state. The rambling, cobblestoned streets snake their way around countless red-roofed half-timber houses – the perfect place to get lost for an afternoon.

Nearest major city: Hannover

The Cutest German Towns You Should Visit, Dinkelsbuühl

@popov_pv

7. Dinkelsbühl

Dinkelsbühl is located in Bavaria and is far less touristy than some other German medieval towns. Immaculately preserved, this quaint little town dates back to the 8th century. Spared destruction in WWII, Dinkelsbühl has retained its authenticity and charm. Be sure to walk the circumference of the city along its medieval fortified walls.

Nearest major city: Nuremberg

Cutest Towns You Should Visit in Germany, Goslar

@departmentofwandering

6. Goslar

UNESCO World Heritage listed Goslar, located in Lower Saxony is a popular tourist town favoured by Germans. Founded in 922 CE, Goslar is famed for its magnificent gates and old city walls, its timbered guild houses, its medieval Imperial Palace and Romanesque churches. Over 47 church spires reach towards the heavens, giving Goslar its nickname of the ‘Rome of the North’.

Nearest major city: Hannover

Cutest German Towns to Visit, Rüdesheim

@kaoreee97

5. Rüdesheim am Rhein

This pretty little town is nestled in the Rhein Gorge and is known for being a winemaking town. Like many of these scenic towns, Rüdesheim am Rhein is UNESCO World Heritage listed. The stunning landscape surrounding the town is reason enough to visit, aside from the excellent wine of the region and the magnificent old town.

Nearest major city: Frankfurt

The Cutest German Towns You Should Visit, Michelstadt

@sunsetchrissi

4. Michelstadt

Located in the middle of the rugged Odenwald nature park lies the beautiful, historic town of Michelstadt. It’s one of the oldest settlements in this region and contains some impressive medieval structures, including its castle and historic town hall, which are known throughout the world as iconic images of Germany.

Nearest major city: Frankfurt

Cutest German Towns to Visit, Miltenberg

@iskandre

3. Miltenberg

Miltenberg has long been celebrated as one of the most beautiful towns in Bavaria. It is famed for its construction of beautiful violins and became known as ‘the Village of a Thousand Violins’. This small town boasts some of the most charming architecture in the country, with its market square being used in many feature films.

Nearest major city: Frankfurt

The Cutest German Towns To Visit, Bamberg

@neil_youngmin

2. Bamberg

If you are in Bavaria, you absolutely cannot miss a trip to one of its most beautiful towns in the region: Bamberg. This beguiling little town’s architecture is unparalleled almost anywhere else in Germany and Bamberg is commonly regarded as one of Germany’s most attractive settlements. UNESCO World Heritage listed, its old town is almost completely devoid of modern structures. Ten breweries are dotted around town and leaving without sampling some of the town’s famous smoked beer would be a crime!

Nearest major city: Nuremberg

Cutest Towns to Visit in Germany, Rothenberg ob der Tauber

@jmilla11

1. Rothenburg ob der Tauber

This beautiful little town is real-life proof that fairy tales aren’t just stories! Adorable little Rothenberg ob der Tauber is located in Bavaria, west of Nuremberg and is Germany’s best-preserved medieval walled city. Seemingly untouched by time, a visit to this charming town will leave you speechless. With narrow towers and imposing ramparts, winding cobblestoned lanes and a walkable town wall, this town embodies the word ‘romance’ perfectly.

Nearest major city: Nuremberg

For more secret small town inspiration, here are 25 Secret Small Towns in Europe You Must Visit.

Over to you: what cute German towns have you visited?

WOW Contributor

Story by World of Wanderlust contributor Rachel.

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73 Comments

  1. danielwall@earthlink.net'

    northierthanthou

    April 28, 2016

    Love the architecture. Cochem looks particularly beautiful with that mountainside.

  2. info@limogescollector.com'

    Vida

    April 27, 2016

    You have really inspired me! We will be in France in a couple of weeks and will take a side trip to Germany and visit some of your suggested villages. Should be wonderful! Thank you.

  3. christinabertram@gmx.net'

    Christina

    February 26, 2016

    Hi Tessa,

    in a European context Freiburg is a big city, not a town :).

    Christina

  4. christinabertram@gmx.net'

    Christina

    February 26, 2016

    Hi,

    as far as I know the famous “violin village” is Mittenwald, not Miltenberg? 🙂

  5. kim.russell@optusnet.com.au'

    Kim

    February 26, 2016

    I can never get enough of Germany and traveling there again in May. I try to make Germany on my list ever year and just love going with friends to show them why I like this country so much

  6. kim.russell@optusnet.com.au'

    Kim

    February 26, 2016

    Yes your correct Peter

  7. peterlake@hotmail.com'

    Peter

    February 19, 2016

    Rachel,

    Miltenberg, whilst lovely, is not known as ‘the Village of a Thousand Violins.’ Mittenwald, on the Bavarian/Austrian border, may the the village you should be aiming for.

  8. calliegunzxcxo@aol.com'

    Callie

    February 8, 2016

    This is such a great list! I have to say that I would add Bacharach in the Rhine River Valley to this list. So charming, adorable, and old-school. Lots of character. The only one I’ve been to on your list is Quedlinburg and I absolutely loved it. Talk about charm! I wish I could see all of these towns… maybe one day!

  9. yassi@iname.com'

    Yasmine

    February 1, 2016

    Then you have to take a look at Marburg before you make your choice! 🙂

  10. abelardorgr@yahoo.com'

    Abel

    January 22, 2016

    You are right Schnoor in Bremen is very beautiful.I love it but Bremen is a city not a little town. Bremen of course worth a visit. Best of Bremen is Schroon and wonderful Marketsquare. Thank you.

  11. itchyfeets.info@web.de'

    Janet from itchyfeetsblog

    January 21, 2016

    Nice list, but you forgot our hometown, Bremen! As Berlin and Hamburg we are a federal city state, but as we a the smallest, we got the nicest sights.
    For example there is the so called Schnoor, a small cobbled district with small houses older than 600 years. In some alleys it is hard to fit through, because they are that narrow. If you Brooke or anybody else wants to know more we got some post about this at our blog, so maybe you can take Bremen to your next list if you know about the Schnoor. And do you know the famous town musicians of Bremen? If not, google them it is a nice tale and if you know them – Yes, you can see them in our town 😉

  12. abelardorgr@yahoo.com'

    Abel

    December 20, 2015

    Miltenberg, Mosbach, Michelstadt, Erbach, BAd Wimpfen ,Saarburg, Alsfeld, Duderstadt, atc atc, Germany is amazing.

  13. abelardorgr@yahoo.com'

    Abel

    December 20, 2015

    Hi, you are right. I enjoyed your hometown a lot. It is spectacular and cute.
    Goslar is no doubt very beautiful but it Bamberg, another wonderful place, which was known as the Rome of the North.

  14. abelardorgr@yahoo.com'

    Abel

    December 20, 2015

    Hi, Goslar is no doubt very beautiful but it Bamberg which was known as the Rome of the North

  15. abelardorgr@yahoo.com'

    Abel

    December 20, 2015

    Goslar is no doubt very beautiful but it is Bamberg which was known as the Rome of the North.

  16. abelardorgr@yahoo.com'

    Abel

    December 20, 2015

    Great List! I know Quedlinburg, Goslar, Cochem , Bamberg and Rothenburg. They are all fastantic and could be in the list of most beatifull towns in the world!. Germany is one of my absolute favorite countries and full of stunning places!. I can add Gorlitz, border with Poland, which is fabulous ,Gengenbach, Wernigerode, the little towns along the Romantic Rhin like Boppard and Bacharach, Fussen in Bavaria. Also Heidelberg, a little city, Freiburg, Erfurt, Trier, and don’t forget beautiful Luneburg , and Lubeck. I know all of them and are FANTASTIC!!!For a future visit I think in Wismar,Marburg, Limburg,Bautzen, Schitlach, Hann Munden, Worfenbuttle, Celle ,Hameln, Schwabisch Hall, Tubingen,Coburg, etc ,etc. The list is endless.
    Abel

  17. chandandua@hotmail.com'

    Chandan

    December 17, 2015

    this is wonderful. i think visiting the big cities (often repeatedly due to work and and ..) can deprive you of these “wonders”. thank you and hope to take on at least some of these journeys soon 😉

  18. jessi@fernwehundso.de'

    Jessi

    October 21, 2015

    Goslar is my hometown and it is really beautiful (but boring when you have to live there…).
    I have never ever heard that you call it “Rome of the North”. Are you sure?

  19. kaelder@indiana.edu'

    Katie

    October 19, 2015

    Garmisch-Partenkirchen is also a small town you must visit! Home to the tallest mountain in Bavaria, the Zugspitze.

  20. samantha@thereshegoesagain.org'

    Samantha Elisabeth

    October 19, 2015

    I’m looking into living in Germany and going to graduate school (probably in two years), and this just makes the desire to go even stronger!

  21. mgabbett@yahoo.com'

    Sanjana @ Green Global Travel

    September 20, 2015

    Fun list of recommendations! These look like such cute places! Thanks for sharing.

  22. lederlea049@google.com'

    italian cruises

    September 7, 2015

    Gorgeous photos ! As with many other European destinations, I would love to put this on my bucket list.

  23. misterloto@mr-loto.it'

    Mr.Loto

    August 10, 2015

    Rothenberg ob der Tauber and Michelstadt seem to be very nice. 🙂

  24. ast.meghan@gmail.com'

    Meghan Oaks

    July 30, 2015

    Love this! We have been to a couple on this list, but some of them I’ve never heard of! We are always looking for cute towns within driving distance from Mannheim. A couple towns that I would add are Sankt Goar, Bacharach and Überlingen. Although, I think every small German town is beautiful! I sometimes feel like I stepped into the middle of a fairy tale.

    American Expats living in Germany and traveling through Europe

  25. salome.niethammer@yahoo.de'

    Salo

    July 28, 2015

    So I live in Germany and near to Dinkelsbühl & Rotenburg and both towns are quite beautiful!
    Love, Salo

  26. szabolcs.vermi@gmail.com'

    Szabolcs

    July 27, 2015

    Fuck sake, you missed out Gorlitz famous for having many scenes of the Grand Budapest Hotel filmed there. Near Dresden, and beside Polish boarder. Sort it out!

  27. Rebekka.diebold@gmail.com'

    Rebekka

    July 25, 2015

    U must see Tübingen, Marburg and Freiburg – definitely 🙂

  28. saakshi.kmr15@gmail.com'

    Saakshi Kumar

    July 22, 2015

    Keep the big cities apart. There is just something about towns in almost every country on this planet. They add up to so much in life. 🙂 After all, it is always the small things that matter.
    It is just too hard to wait to travel to Germany.
    Thanks for the info. 🙂

  29. alfredo196@alice.it'

    alfredo ciano

    July 22, 2015

    A Fairy Tale in the Middle of the Europe…

  30. ramendo2@asu.edu'

    Rachel Mendoza

    July 21, 2015

    Miss Germany so much!

  31. mail@joydellavita.com'

    JoyDellaVita

    July 20, 2015

    You should visit Tettnang in southern Germany, especially during the Beer Festival in August ’16 with more than 100 different beer sorts 😉

  32. mpkcoop@gmail.com'

    Mary

    July 20, 2015

    I fell in love with Eisenach when I was there a couple of years ago. I’d LOVE to live there…just for 1 year! In the shadow of Wartburg Castle, there is so much history there: Bach’s hometown, Martin Luther lived there, and St. Elisabeth of Hungary lived in the Castle. Adorable!

  33. thetouristoflife@gmail.com'

    yvonnelaura

    July 18, 2015

    Love Michelstadt.. Looks like a fairytale!

  34. nora.matland@gmail.com'

    Nora@ForgottenRecipe

    July 18, 2015

    Haha. I was wondering if you would put Rotherburg ob der Tauber! I just fell in love with Rothenburg when I was living in Germany! Love all the Fachhallenhaeuser!

  35. alonewithacamera@gmail.com'

    cat smith

    July 17, 2015

    Wow! I was born there and I have never heard of these cities! Thanks for sharing! Will definitely check one of them out once I am back there.

  36. a.reufenheuser@14qm.de'

    Andreas

    July 17, 2015

    We travel and work in our RV, in the moment mostly in Germany. And we have two further tipps: Monschau and Alsfeld.
    Andreas

  37. charactersandcarryons@gmail.com'

    Joyce

    July 16, 2015

    I can’t believe that I haven’t been to Germany yet, but this definitely stokes my wanderlust. Can’t wait, thanks for sharing these!

  38. jafarsadique67@gmail.com'

    Cool Pics

    July 16, 2015

    Really some awesome towns!

  39. tallgirlbigworld@gmail.com'

    Claire @ TallGirlBigWorld

    July 16, 2015

    I’m so glad you have Bamberg on this list. It’s one of my all time favorite towns, and it really does feel like you’re walking through a postcard. I never felt like it was “too touristy” though, which is nice. Lovely post! xx
    -Claire

  40. soso_wonderlife@yahoo.com'

    Esraa Bassiouni

    July 16, 2015

    Waw I just want to visit them all.

  41. xo_shelbs_ox@Hotmail.com'

    Shelby

    July 16, 2015

    cool post! Love finding new towns :]

  42. miia.haapanen@worldliciouz.com'

    Miia / Worldliciouz

    July 16, 2015

    Germany is one of my absolute favorite countries! When I was a teenager I visited a friend and stayed at her place in charming Waltershausen in Thüringen, super small, but near Erfurt. And Erfurt made me fall in love! I know it is the capital of Thüringen and as such, not that small but more than worth a visit. Hoping to go back someday.

    And Würzburg in Bavaria is such a pretty place too! Again, not too small, but not that big either and a long history dating back to 1000 bce. Will never forget the pink blossoms in the trees almost in front of the main railway station; more than beautiful.

    You can’t but love Germany. And I will be adding some of these listed towns to my must-visit-in-germany list. Thanks for the lovely post!

  43. dahianyO@gmail.com'

    Dahiany

    July 16, 2015

    Wow, thank you so much for posting this! These are a must to visit when I go to Germany! Those buildings remind me of Snow White’s cottage xD

  44. mytraveljournalnl@gmail.com'

    Danique

    July 16, 2015

    Only been to Cochem but yes, that was a really cute and nice place!

  45. moosha12@hotmail.co.uk'

    Misha

    July 16, 2015

    These places are all absolutely gorgeous!! I’m not surprised so many fairytales originated in Germany with places like this!

  46. rjw.williams91@gmail.com'

    Rachel

    July 15, 2015

    Wonderful post! So informative and your pictures are beautiful 🙂

    Rachel

  47. hello@thehappyjetlagger.de'

    Tatiana

    July 15, 2015

    I’m german, travelled a lot through my country – and I love your selection! Great suggestions for those, who want to get to know the more historical quieter parts of the country. In all, Germany is such a great place, lots of history – and although I travel a lot I still love how beautiful my home country is 🙂

  48. info@the-travelogue.com'

    the travelogue

    July 15, 2015

    Wow, that is a greeeeat list!! 🙂
    We appreciate that you show a more “secret” and hidden side of what Germany actually has to offer! So many beautiful places and so worth a visit.
    We should travel around our home country more often, that’s for sure!

    xx Anna & Vanessa

  49. mariana.jgf@gmail.com'

    Marni

    July 15, 2015

    I just found your blog and I loved this post! I’ve moved to Germany in January and I’m always looking for recommendations on which towns to visit next 😉
    I also write a bit about travel, among other things on my small blog the8things.com – if you have a minute don’t hesitate to take a look 🙂
    Xx Marni

  50. beholder.blogger@gmail.com'

    GIULIA

    July 15, 2015

    WOW, I LOVE GERMANY AND THIS POST IS REALLY GREAT!

  51. secondhandhedgehog@gmail.com'

    Katie @ Second-Hand Hedgehog

    July 15, 2015

    Great list! I’ve been meaning to head back to Germany for some time now. It seems silly not to when it’s so close. So I’ll definitely have to visit some of these – and resist the temptation to wear a Disney princess dress…

  52. KAIE.COLLINS@PEACOCKCATERING.CO.UK'

    Kaie

    July 15, 2015

    I love Germany. Stopped in Quedlinburg on our road trip from England to Estonia and fell in love with it. Definitely will try to visit some other places mentioned here. thank you

  53. lovefromberlinblog@gmail.com'

    Rae

    July 15, 2015

    Thanks for this amazing post! I am currently residing in Berlin, but have still not done nearly the amount of travel around Germany as I should have seeing as I live here! Will def. try to hit up some of these spots soon!

    Rae

  54. olg.rabo@gmail.com'

    Olga

    July 15, 2015

    Oh, I wrote the same post few months ago but with different cities!! Will definitely check out Dinkelsbühl and Goslar!

    Quedlinburg isGermany’s cutest town, for sure – it’s SUPER beautiful! If you like it, you should also definitely go to Wernigerode, which is even more famous than Quedlinburg, actually. And on top of that, don’t forget about Mittenwald, too – it’s located just in the midst of the Alps which makes it absolutely gorgeous!!

  55. nomad@geekz.za.net'

    The Digital Nomad

    July 15, 2015

    Great List, Thanks.

    We are headed to Germany around February and had not considered doing any small towns, but they look incredible.

    Going to definitely rethink things now.

  56. sonja_mackenberg@hotmail.com'

    Sonja / En Route with Sonja

    July 15, 2015

    These cities are absolutely worth a visit! I am glad that someone already has mentioned Tübingen as a “must go” while in Germany. I am living in a city very close to Tübingen and I can tell that it is really worth one or two visits!
    Another town I think is really underestimated is Leonberg – situated in the south of Germany close to Stuttgart is is a picturesque older town with a fairy tail and beautiful “old town” as well as a smaller castle and an absolutely stunning garden! Just simply amazing – especially in spring when the flowers start to blossom!
    Thanks for mentioning all those little town and villages! 🙂

  57. nevstokkum@gmail.com'

    nicole

    July 15, 2015

    Wow, I want to go there.

  58. waterlily-lis@gmx.de'

    Lis

    July 15, 2015

    You MUST visit Tübingen near Stuttgart in the south west of Germany. It is a wonderful small city at the Neckar river 😉

    I am from Germany and now I think I need to go on a roadtrip through my country because even I don´t know all of these places 😉

  59. sabineludwig2000@yahoo.de'

    Sabine

    July 15, 2015

    Hi Brooke, Miltenberg is not in the Bavarian Alps, it is almost 400 km away from Munich and is located in Northern Bavaria in the region of Lower Franconia near my hometown of Wuerzburg. All the other pictures and descriptions are great.
    Best wishes and safe travels.
    Sabine

  60. Tavares.brenda@hotmail.com'

    Brenda Tavares

    July 15, 2015

    I LOVE Germany! Specially the small cities as those you talked on this post. I go back many times to this country and its always a pleasure. Nowadays I am totally in love with konstanz and the Bodensee!!!

  61. carina.baeuerlein@gmx.de'

    Carina

    July 15, 2015

    Great list! Thanks for moving the attention away from the typical tourist destinations and towards much more lovely places.
    I add Sommerach to the list! It just won a gold medal last year in an international competition for being one of the most beautiful little towns in Europe. Since I grew up there I can promise it’s worth a visit! Very famous for its own wine and very popular durings asparagus season (May/June).
    Next major cities are Nuremberg or Würzburg.
    Cheers, Carina

  62. iida.e.lehtonen@gmail.com'

    Iida-Emilia

    July 15, 2015

    I’ve never visited those little towns even though I’ve been in Germany so many times and also lived there. I guess me and my boyfriend really need to visit those places in our next roadtrip in September. My favorite city in Germany is definately Trier since there are lots of old houses that look like they are from a fairytale too!

  63. sara@daily-lovejuice.net'

    Sara

    July 15, 2015

    Throwing Monschau in there, a friend took me there and I loved it so much! I had to take my family there afterwards as well. Germany just has such adorable towns, with cute pintoresque architecture, beautiful souvenirs, and amazing food <3

  64. ryanilenewebster@gmail.com'

    Ryan | A Backpack & A Boarding Pass

    July 15, 2015

    All of these little towns sound amazing! I am taking a trip to Europe soon, and I will definitely have to put one or two of these towns on my list of places I go in Germany! Thanks for the post!

  65. Isabelledrolet@hotmail.com'

    Isabelle

    July 15, 2015

    Passau is also definitely a must. Located right on the border of Czeck Republic, Passau has a lot to offer, nice pub and nice people.

  66. BradleeLocke@gmail.com'

    Bradlee

    July 15, 2015

    Saving this for when I move to Munich in a couple months! Love these. They’re all added to my list now!

  67. lioninthewild@gmail.com'

    Kiara King

    July 15, 2015

    Now this is Germany! This is exactly the Germany I think a lot of people go to see, but then only end up in the big trendy cities. Thank you for sharing this!

  68. carefree.spirit.fairy@gmail.com'

    The Oracle

    July 15, 2015

    I must go to Germany soon!

  69. Clauzzenlms@gmail.com'

    Pao

    July 15, 2015

    Wow! So beautiful! Im planning to go next year, so I’m going to write all.this cities down!

    Thank you.
    Pao

  70. hello@theblondetourist.com'

    Sian @ The Blonde Tourist

    July 15, 2015

    These cities are soooo cute! Germany is a favourite country of mine (Berlin and Munich are both amazing as you say) but next time I’ll try and add one of these to my travel bucket list! BT x

  71. chalsie@wearefellow.net'

    Chalsie

    July 15, 2015

    I’ve visited Freiburg back in 2010, sitting on the south east of Germany. This little medieval town is overlooked by the Black Forest, which sits above the town, overlooking it – quite eery! It’s definitely worth a visit!

    Chalsie x

  72. michellereimann@gmail.com'

    Michelle | Lights Camera Travel

    July 15, 2015

    I imagine these little towns would be better if you want to base yourself in Germany to learn the language and immerse yourself in the culture! I’m going to spend some time in Rodalben this Autumn (SW of Frankfurt, near France) which is a town I’m sure no one has ever heard of! It’s not the cutest of German towns, but still has some really pretty spots. The town backs onto a forest there which is pretty special!

  73. karmapoliice@gmail.com'

    Tessa / Bramble & Thorn

    July 15, 2015

    So many of my favourite German towns here, yay! I love these choices, particularly that you’ve shone a light on some lesser-known places. Of course, Rothenburg ob der Tauber is gorgeous but soooo touristy, it can get overwhelming at times!

    Tessa

Comments are closed.