Monschau, Guide to One of Germany’s Prettiest Villages


Situated in the little visited Eifel region of western Germany and only a short distance to its border with Belgium, Monschau is undoubtedly one of Germany’s prettiest small towns.

Famed for its half-timbered houses sitting on a sharp meandering bends on the Rur river, Monschau offers plenty of sightseeing in the town and the North Eifel hills beyond.

Here is Echtra Echtra’s guide to visiting Monschau.

Where better to start than wandering the narrow, winding streets of the old town of Monschau, taking time to admire and photograph the uneven but pretty houses on the river. There are over 300 listed buildings in Monschau.

Monschau Castle overlooks the town on a high point. Dating to the 13th century, it saw action when besieged by Emperor Charles V in 1543, his troops subsequently plundered the castle and the town. Today it is possible to walk around the large grounds and admire the view over the old town.

The castle also hosts the annual Monschau Festival which features an eclectic mix of music from around the world.

The Rotes Haus, or Red House, is now a museum dedicated to the cloth-making history of Monschau. The house was originally built in 1760 for merchant clothier Johann Heinrich Scheibler who manufactured his fine woollen garments here.

If you are visiting during winter, the Christmas Market is always one of the best things to do in any German town, and Monschau us no different.

Just outside the town visit the local mustard mill where mustard is still made today by the fourth-generation family at the Senfmühle.

Out in the countryside, in the Eifel Hills there are guided walks, trails to explore on your own, cycle paths and other outdoor activities. In spring keep an eye out for the yellow-dotted fields of wild narcissus flowers on the Narzissenroute.

Check out MTB Guide Eifel for mountain bike hire and tours.

Despite the Eifel National Park‘s location, close to Cologne, Bonn and Aachen it hosts an International Dark Sky Park allowing views of the twinkling night sky.


Credit: Gibson
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