The historic old town of Stein am Rhein

Salmenstübli

The sights of Stein am Rhein in Switzerland


Imagine you step through a city gate and you find yourself in a different time. That's how we felt when we visited the small Swiss town of Stein am Rhein in the canton of Schaffhausen. The sights of Stein am Rhein are worth a visit. We drove from our hotel in Radolfzell on Lake Constance, the Bora HotSpa Resort, with the public bus, which we could use as holiday guests for free, around the peninsula Höri to Stein am Rhein. The place is located directly on the German-Swiss border. The bus stops at a large parking lot in front of the Untertor, which stands proudly between residential buildings. Here we do not yet suspect which historical treasure box is hidden behind it.

 

Untertor in Stein am Rhein
The Untertor - one of the sights in Stein am Rhein

 

The historic old town of Stein am Rhein

As soon as we step through the city gate, one half-timbered house follows the other. Ornate oriels with metal roofs, flower-decorated half-timbered gables that protrude from tiled roofs, murals from several centuries and shop signs, one of which is more beautiful than the next, take us back in time. “The houses date from the 13th and 14th centuries,” explains Yvonne Bähler from the tourist office. "However, they didn't always look like this. It was only when the city became richer and tighter due to the taxes levied on the inflow of the Rhine into Lake Constance that the facades of the buildings began to be decorated with the murals that can be seen on many houses in the old town of Stein am Rhein today . "

 

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Our city tour shows that this art has not died out. Some of the house fronts are adorned with a painting that is more recent. Facade painting has continued here until modern times. "And we live quite well from it," laughs Yvonne Bähler and says: "Thousands of day trippers come here year after year, from whom the city derives its main income today."

 

Half-timbered houses in Stein am Rhein
Half-timbered houses are sights in Stein am Rhein
Half-timbered gable in Stein am Rhein
Timbered gable
Beer garden sign in Stein am Rhein
A somewhat misleading beer garden sign
wall Paintings
Facade paintings in Stein am Rhein

 

Excursion destination on the Rhine

We do not notice much of it, we're here on a rainy Tuesday afternoon in mid-June. Just in time, before the tourists from Germany, Austria and Switzerland come here to take a closer look at this gem on the lower Rhine. On our stroll through the main street, however, we are no longer out of amazement. Creepers wind their way up to the roof ridge on a wall of a house. In between, one of the pretty shop signs juts through the green, indicating that there was once a weaving mill in the adjoining house. On another façade, a not quite fitting sign with beautiful vines announces a beer garden behind the front of the house. Each inn and even the ice cream parlor are adorned with signs announcing what customers will find behind the historic walls.

 

Bridge over the Rhine
The bridge over the Rhine

 

Stein am Rhein - the location made it rich

Stein am Rhein is one of the few Swiss cities on both sides of the Rhine and is connected by a bridge that leads across the river. It has become rich mainly because of its location in a rather shallow place in the Rhine. If there was not enough water to allow the merchant ships to cross the shallow streams on their way to Lake Constance, the goods had to be unloaded and transported by land - a good way to ask the dealers to pay. Obviously, this was done to a sufficient degree, but Stein am Rhein developed into a real jewel among the Swiss border towns.

 

patio
Courtyard of the Bürgerasyls
Bürgerasyl
Bürgerasyl
beggars office
The beggar's room
poor feeding
Here, the feeding of the poor is being prepared

 

The fact that not all citizens of the city went so well can be seen in Stein am Rhein. We visit the former Bürgerasyl, which is directly adjacent to the tourist information center of the city. There, one has uncovered the remains of the remains of the ancient wall and, in some niches, shows what it once was for: delinquents were arrested there. In the so-called beggar's room, tramps, beggars, impoverished craftsmen or drunks were accommodated. On one of the walls we find a small hatch through which food was distributed to the poor. This comes supposedly only from the 19. Century.

 

Tavern Zum Rothen Ochsen
There is wine at the Rothen Ox

 

Where can you eat in Stein am Rhein?

Again and again we come upon our city tour through the village on signs that point to the inns that look out along the main street through the old town and the banks of the Rhine to customers. There are Swiss wines at the Rothen Ochsen, the Salmenstübli praises all sorts of food, and in the Schoggibox there should be more than 300 varieties of Swiss chocolate. Unfortunately, we are a bit too early, but this has still closed when we get past it, otherwise I would not have resisted here.

 

Salmenstübli
The Salmenstübli announces various dishes

 

So we finally stop at the restaurant Rheingerbe on the banks of the Rhine, which once, as the landlady tells us, actually housed a tannery. We stop here, um To taste the pilgrims' meal, which is currently offered there to the guests, How it tasted, and what was served, you can read here. One thing is for sure: you do not stay hungry in Stein am Rhein.

 

Restaurant Rheingerbe
Restaurant Rheingerbe

 

Stein am Rhein is definitely worth a visit for medieval friends and anyone interested in living history. We especially liked that Klostermuseum St. Georgen with its well-preserved monastery facilities from the time between the 12. - 16. Century. We only regret - once again - that we had too little time to see all the sights of the city. But there is always the possibility to return again. And definitely worth it in this small town on the lower reaches of the Rhine.

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Getting there:

The nearest international airport is Zurich. It is also possible to travel to Stein am Rhein by train.  Timetable and booking*.

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Stone at the Rhein
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Source: own research on site. We would like to thank Untersee Tourismus for the friendly invitation. Our opinion remains our own.

Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline
Photos: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline

The historic old town of Stein am Rhein

2 thoughts too "The historic old town of Stein am Rhein"

  1. I finally visited Stein am Rhein again - in October. I love this town. Unfortunately I could only take pictures in the late afternoon because the fog was just too thick. But when the clouds of fog lifted you, it gave wonderfully harmonious photos and finally a steel-blue sky appeared. So my patience was rewarded. Not that it was a punishment to walk around town all day. That gave me more time for the asylum, the church of St. Johann, the abbey of St. Georgen and for a stroll :) And of course for coffee and plum cake!

    1. The time was unfortunately limited for us, because we continued by boat in the direction of Lake Constance. I would like to stay there even longer and have a look at the Museum Lindwurm. But that was certainly not my last visit to Stein am Rhein.

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