Walzbach is the stream that runs through the village. It is canalized with stone walls, but the stretch downstream from the main bridge has grassy banks. Here, in the very centre of the village, is the best spot to observe the animals that live in the stream.Ducks, obviously. There is hardly an open water without wild ducks hereabouts. There are...more
Wine making is a backbreaking job. We easily forget how hard the vintners and their helpers had to work for that fine drop in our glass. Weingarten honours the namesakes of the village with a small monument that is easily overlooked, but touching if you have a closer look at it. The sandstone figure, hard to tell if it is a man or a woman, carries...more
The courtyard behind the art nouveau town hall has been redesigned a few years ago. Rathausplatz is now called the "new middle" of the village (a bit exaggerated but if they must...) It is a modern square, surrounded by the town hall and other houses, no traffic, thus quiet. It has a pizzeria and one or two other cafes/eateries with outdoor...more
The old cemetery of the village is located next to the zoo park. It has long been given up, only a handful of old graves are still there. The plants of the forest are reconquering the area. This is the "nature" part of Tier- und Naturpark. Birds of the forest can be observed here. A trail leads through the cemetery grounds and further on to the...more
The so-called Tier- und Naturpark is a tiny zoo which is operated by the local bird protector association. It shows mostly domestic animals, like sheep, goats, ducks and chickens, a small herd of fallow deer (click for photos), and a variety of exotic birds from canaries to parrots.This is not a zoo one would travel far for. It is also not the...more
The town hall of Weingarten is a building with interesting art nouveau facades. It dates from 1900. The facade towards the street has a little tower, a pulpit above the main portal (for the mayor to make speeches?), and the art nouveau shapes are mixed with scarce gothic ornaments.A funny detail (photo 4): on the corner there is a bust of a man...more
The sunny hillsides above Weingarten that face south and west are planted with vines and orchards. There are some paved trails that can be walked, which is herewith recommended because of the view over the village and far out into the Upper Rhine Plain with the hills of the Palatinate Forest in the background. From the village centre, best is...more
Weingartner Moor is a swamp landscape in the Rhine plain south of Weingarten. It is actually an old river bed. Until the end of the ice age the rivers Kinzig and Murg ran along here. Since they changed their beds and broke through to the Rhine further south, the former river bed became a swamp. These wet lowlands are of high ecological value and...more
Walk'sches Haus is the most beautiful half-timbered house in Weingarten. It is located by the main bridge and in vicinity to the two churches. These together for the most picturesque street view of the village.The house originally dates from 1701 but has been rebuilt in the 1980s. It is a country inn with a restaurant and guest rooms. The...more
One mill wheel is still turning, driven by the waters of Walzbach. The wheel is attached to Untere Mühle (Lower Mill), a former water mill. It is an "undershot" wheel, i.e. the water hits the bottom of the wheel.This is not the original wheel, though. It is a recent reconstruction, dated 2002. The energy is used to gain electricity.more
The watch tower on the hill above the village was built in the 16th century. Palatinate soldiers used to stand guard on it. After war damages it was renovated in the 19th century. The large sandstone relief of the angel on the wall dates from 1956, it is meant as a war memorial.The tower is open only on Sunday afternoons. It is used for...more
The two churches of Weingarten are positioned next to each other in one line, they sort of form a pair of 'sisters'. The two steeples are points de vue from the bridges over the little river. The panorama is best enjoyed from the twerrace below Wartturm. The two churches are turned towards each other - rather unusual to see a catholic church with...more
Weingarten is located on a major train route between Karlsruhe and Bruchsal. Most trains including the S 3 S-Bahn just race past, though. The only lines that stop here are the S-Bahn respective tram lines S 31 and S 32, the yellow KVV trams that proceed into Kraichgau. These run at regular and frequent intervals, though. KVV tariff applies.
The station is located on the western side of the village. Into the centre it is a walk of about 15 minutes. Follow Bahnhofstraße until you see the spires of the two churches.
Weingarten has a very active catholic parish community. It has become famous for a tradition on the holiday of Corpus Christi, which is unique in our region. The route of the procession is decorated with flower carpets. The priest who carries the monstrance with the sacred host, and only he, walks on them. Carefully, so the pictures are not damaged.
The carpets are made from flowers, loose petals and leaves by volunteers from the community during the night before the holiday. The pictures are designed by a local artist, there are new ones every year. The delicate works stay in the street as long as they look nice, i.e. not for long. If you want to see them, the afternoon of Corpus Christi is the time to visit.
The photos here in the tip were taken in 2003. New photos of the 2011 carpets here.
This is, in fact, not a local tradition although it is becoming one, and even many villagers don't remember any more how young it is and where it came from. The making of flower carpets is popular in Transsylvania and was brought to Weingarten after World War II by Romanian-German refugees who settled down in the village.
Mass begins at 9:30 in the church. After mass the procession is formed, which carries the sacred host around the church and back in; the end of the service happens again inside the church. Afterwards the community are doing the "Churchyard Hock" with food and drink, benches and tables in the square and a band playing until around 12:30-13:00. The different groups in the parish run the stalls and prepare the food. So if you want a drink or a grilled sausage/burger/Maultaschen or a fresh wafer for cheap prices, stop by, buy a coupon and get what you want - the party is open to everyone.
Some hiking trails through the vineyards and up into the forests of Katzenberg are marked. They begin at the upper end of the cemetery. A board in the parking lot (rather small, it is by the street crossing) shows a map, the trail marks that are used, and the estimated duration of the walks.
All trails lead through the vineyards first. There, an 'educational path' is marked with signboards that provide some information about grape varieties, a vintner's works, and so on. This information is very brief and basic, though, hence you don't miss much if you don't read German.
This trail is nevertheless recommended because of the views. From the hillside you are overlooking the village and the Upper Rhine plain. This should also be a nice place to watch the sunset.
On hot summer's days this will be tough, though. Vineyards are always planted on the sunniest and hottest slopes. You'll be better when your reach the forests.
Equipment: Comfortable shoes. No special equipment needed. Trails are easy to walk.