Bürgstadt is a small town near Miltenberg in the Churfranken region of pleasure. On my first day in the region, I set out to discover the town.
Where is Bürgstadt?
At the estuary of the Erf into the Main, on the north-eastern edge of the Odenwald and on the south-western edge of the Spessart lies the town of Bürgstadt. Only about 2 kilometres away is the town of Miltenberg, which is known for its beautiful half-timbered architecture.
I walked from the train station in Miltenberg to Bürgstadt to my hotel. It was a leisurely walk and took about 30 minutes.
Short walk through Bürgstadt
If you take a short walk through the village, you will notice the many small courtyards. There is usually a beautiful half-timbered house facing the street, and through a gateway you enter a courtyard with side buildings.
Some of the farms have signs facing the road indicating that they are wineries that also sell their wines directly on site. At some times of the year, some of the wineries host so-called Häckerwirtschaften. You sit comfortably in the courtyards, drink wine and also get something to eat.
Old parish church St.Margareta
The parish church is one of the prominent landmarks in Bürgstadt. You can see the church spire from almost every place.
The nave and the tower of the church are thought to have been built before 1220; it was initially a simple hall building. Around 1490, the sacristy was added to the north side. Further alterations followed, and the church developed into a fortified church with a fortification wall, of which only parts remain today. The church tower still shows today that it was a fortified church. The second floor of the tower has embrasures and the third floor has small windows for the defence.
I walked around the Old Parish Church. In one corner there is a small lovingly tended memorial.
I particularly liked the view through the gatehouse, which is right next to the church. It dates back to 1728 and was originally a bell house that had been demolished due to dilapidation. The gatehouse was first occupied by the bell-ringer of the parish church, and later housed a school. After a new schoolhouse was built in 1879, the teacher now moved into a flat in the gatehouse. From 1948, the town used the place as a library, and today it houses a youth centre.
In the evening, the churchyard and the church are illuminated and offer visitors an atmospheric sight.
Actually, I just wanted to take a quick photo of the outside of St Martin’s Chapel, not knowing what a treasure is inside. It was a good thing that a local resident happened to be passing by with a key – I would have really missed out!
St. Martin’s Chapel was built as a parish church between 900 and 1000 AD and is considered one of the oldest churches in Franconia. If you stand in front of the main portal, you can see St. Martin on his horse. He is sharing his coat with the beggar. Above him, Christ can be seen holding a cloak in his hand. According to legend, this is how he appeared to St. Martin in a dream.
When you enter the chapel, you can discover beautiful wall and ceiling paintings from the 16th century.
On the gallery parapet you can see pictures of Christ and the twelve apostles, which were created in the course of the redesign around 1730.
The ceiling is decorated with ornamental depictions painted directly on the wood. All the figurative representations on the ceiling were painted on paper and glued to the wood. It is known that these works were done by Andreas Herneisen. He also painted the east wall of the choir (signature and date 1589). Unfortunately, these paintings were covered over and not uncovered until 1907. Here, too, scenes from the legend of St. Martin can be seen.
However, I was much more fascinated by the medallion depictions on the walls of St Martin’s Chapel in Bürgstadt. A total of 40 medallions depict scenes from the Old and New Testaments. In the top row (14 images), it begins in the southern nave of the chapel with the image of the creation of the world and ends with the brazen serpent. The row in the middle shows the childhood and ministry of Jesus in 12 images. The 15 medallions in the bottom row show scenes of the Passion, the Resurrection, the Ascension of Christ and the Miracle of Pentecost. I stood in the chapel for a while looking at the pictures. They are beautifully depicted in great detail. I think it takes time to grasp every detail here.
St Martin’s Chapel is beautiful and you should definitely take the time to visit it.
Bürgstadt Town Hall
Bürgstadt’s town hall was built almost at the same time as St. Martin’s Chapel. The building monument is located at Krummgasse 2.
I think the Gothic-looking roof truss is a particular eye-catcher. I have not been able to discover a comparable roof truss in the village. The gable roof is two-storey with three-storey curved gables and has a pointed roof covered with slate.
Above the main gate is the following inscription:
„ALS TAUSENDFÜNFHUNDERT JAHR NEUNZIG DAZU DIE JAHRZAHL WAR, NACH DER GEBURT UNSERE HERRN CHRIST, DIES RATHAUS ZU BAUEN ANGEFANGEN IST. WOLFGANG, ERZBISCHOF UND HERR ZU MAINZ, KURFÜRST DES REICHS MIT EHER REGIERT WOHL ZU DIESER ZEIT SEINE UNTERTAN MIT GERECHTIGKEIT. DER EHRENWERTE WOLFF EBERHARD VON EHRENBERG WAR AMTMANN GLEICH ZU MILTENBERG, AUCH WAR KELLER JOHANN HARTMANN UNSERE GETREUE OBRIGKEIT ALLESAMT HABEN CENTGRAF, SCHULTHEIS, GERICHT DIES RATHAUS WIE ES STEHET AUFGERICHT. MIT GEMEINEN KOSTEN AUFGEWENDT, IN GOTTES NAMEN GLÜCKLICH VOLLENDT. WAR BAUMEISTER DER ALT PETER SCHNEIDER UND MIT IHM HIERONYMUS HOFBAUER. WAR EIN HEISSER SOMMER HEUER WUCHS GUTER WEIN SEHR TEUER. GOTT WOLL’ DIES HAUS SAMT GEMEINER SCHAR SOWOHL SEIN KIRCH FERNER BEWAHR VERLEIH FRIED, WOHLFAHRT UND FREUD HIER ZEITLICH, DORT DIE SELIGKEIT. AMEN.“
(“WHEN ONE THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED NINETY YEARS WAS THE YEAR AFTER THE BIRTH OF OUR LORD CHRIST, THIS TOWN HALL WAS BEGUN TO BE BUILT. WOLFGANG, ARCHBISHOP AND LORD OF MAINZ, ELECTOR OF THE REALM WITH RATHER RULES HIS SUBJECTS WITH JUSTICE AT THIS TIME. THE HONOURABLE WOLFF EBERHARD VON EHRENBERG WAS THE MAGISTRATE OF MILTENBERG, ALSO THE CELLARER JOHANN HARTMANN WAS OUR FAITHFUL RULER ALL TOGETHER THE CENTGRAVE, THE MAYOR, THE COURT HAVE ERECTED THIS TOWN HALL AS IT STANDS. WITH COMMON COSTS, IN GOD’S NAME HAPPILY COMPLETED. THE MASTER BUILDER WAS OLD PETER SCHNEIDER AND WITH HIM HIERONYMUS HOFBAUER. IT WAS A HOT SUMMER THIS YEAR AND GOOD WINE GREW VERY EXPENSIVE. GOD WILL PRESERVE THIS HOUSE AND ITS CHURCH, GRANT PEACE, PROSPERITY AND JOY HERE IN TIME, THERE IN BLISS. AMEN.”)
Next to it are the coats of arms of the Mainz cathedral chapter and the archbishop’s court and elector.
The building is also said to be worth seeing from the inside, but you have to book in advance for a tour.
In the evening, the town hall is beautifully illuminated.
Stroll along the Main
Back to my hotel, I walked directly along the Main. There are some subways that go under the main road, so you don’t have to run across the road!
Not only does an excellently developed cycle path run along the Main, but also a footpath directly along the water. Here the plants are in bloom and you can observe the animals in the river. The view across the Main to the steep vineyards is beautiful. Every now and then a ship passes by – it was pure relaxation for me to sit on the bench and look out over the water.
Stay overnight in Bürgstadt
I stayed three nights in Bürgstadt at the MAIN-VINOTEL run by the Helmstetter family. The family-run hotel is located on the outskirts of town in a modern building.
Here at the winery you can stay in 20 rooms. Many rooms have a balcony, others have direct access to the outside. There is a lift for easy access to the upper floors and barrier-free rooms on the ground floor.
My room had a balcony facing south. A wonderful place to enjoy a glass of the house’s wine in the evening. And if you are lucky enough to be there at the right time, you can experience the house’s “Häckerwirtschaft”, where you not only get good wine, but also good food.
During my visit, a bicycle garage was also being built where e-bikes can later be parked and charged.
I felt very comfortable in the hotel.
Disclosure: The overnight stays at the VINOTEL were part of a press trip to the Churfranken region.