Germany,  Travel

On the German Timber-frame Road #2 – Idstein

The German Timber-frame Road is a paradise for painters, urban sketchers, lovers of architecture and history. In this post I want to take you for a colourful journey, which should inspire and boost your creativity.

I discovered the German Timber-frame Road early this year and after visiting Hoechst I had to see more towns like that. My second part of the journey was along the train connection between Frankfurt and Limburg. My first stop was Idstein.

This little town is truly charming. Everything looks like from a fairy tale: streets, houses, castle, church and restaurants – everything very colourful, with variety of patterns and forms.


Visiting the cities along the Timber-frame Road is always a time-travel and each town is like an open-air museum. The oldest house in Idstein – no. 2 Obergasse, was built in 1410!

I was walking on cobblestone streets – it might not be very convenient  for modern cars, but looks pretty. I found a lot of “secret” little paths and corridors between the houses. It would be great to play hide and seek there.

I  like to imagine how people were living at the time when those houses were built, what they job was, how they spent their free time. It is amazing how unique each house is, in terms of size, colour, ornaments.  Owners still put a lot of effort to decorate their entrance, windows or small gardens.

Apart from timber-framed houses there are also other interesting buildings to see, e.g. the Town Hall, the Palace with its gardens and the Witches Tower.

It might be also nice to sit in one of the cafes or restaurants at the König-Adolf-Platz, which is a market place. I had some typical German pretzel at the Bakery Huth with a nice view to the Crooked House. It is a bit tilted, which gives it a funny look.

I strongly recommend town’s website, which has options for city tour, nice description of timber-framed houses. They also prepared a glossary of symbols with an explanation of various elements of the construction and decoration – really interesting!

Idstein is really small, so everything is in a walking distance and the trip may take even less than a day, depending on activities you choose. But one afternoon is enough to spend some nice time there. Sundays are very calm and most of the places apart from restaurants are closed. For more lively atmosphere and shopping in local stores, I would recommend Saturday instead.

By the time I am writing about Idstein, I have been to other places on the German Timber-frame Road and soon they will be shown in other posts. Have you seen my trip to Hoechst?

Have you been to any of the towns with timber-framed houses? Which one do you recommend?


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