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In an area of western Germany renowned for its history, wine-making, natural beauty and abundance of ancient castles, the remarkably-preserved medieval town of Bacharach is unmissable. Within its fourteenth-century town walls, Bacharach's streets are a treasure trove of timber-framed houses and other historic buildings including the beautiful Romanesque-style St Peter's Church and the smaller Jozefskapelle (Chapel of Joseph) which features exquisitely-detailed stained-glass windows. Perhaps the most impressive, however, is Burg Stahleck. This magnificent and fully-restored twelfth-century castle stands high on a crag overlooking the town and river and today functions as a hostel for visitors.
Bacharach sits on the banks of the Rhine and was historically important to the region's wine trade as a port where barrels of local wine would be transferred from smaller to larger boats for their onward transportation north along the river. Bacharach itself has an excellent reputation for producing quality wines; the town takes its name Bacchus, the Roman god of wine. The slopes of the Steeg Valley, which rise above the town, provide perfect growing conditions for both Riesling and Pinot Noir grapes. The resulting wines can be sampled, along with excellent local fare, at any of Bacharach's atmospheric Weinstubes; traditional wine taverns.

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Altes Haus

'Altes Haus' (Old House) is aptly named. Built in 1368, this gorgeous half-timbered house is one of the oldest buildings in Bacharach and regarded as one of the town's landmarks. Today it is a weinstube and restaurant but retains its historic ambience and charm.


Set amid the vineyards on the side of the valley above Bacharach is the restored remains of the town's former Post Tower, constructed in 1899. Although only the outer shell of the original building remains this was strengthened and made safe in 2005 and now provides an elevated platform from which unparalleled panoramic views of the town, the river and the surrounding valley can be obtained.

Town Wall and Fortifications

Bacharach's enclosing town wall is one of the finest examples of an intact medieval town wall in Germany and, although sections may occasionally be closed for renovation, is still fully accessible to visitors. As part of the defensive fortifications of the town, sixteen watchtowers were also built in the early part of the fourteenth-century, nine of which still stand today. The battlement atop the wall which runs parallel to the Rhine is a public walkway and offers excellent views of the town and river.