Nordlingen is another medieval town - the one with the best preserved city wall in the region. In fact, there are 18 towers and five gates, all still working, on the wall.
Loepsinger Gate Tower - Head for the 16th century Loepsinger Gate Tower where you'll be treated to a beautiful view of the town. A bonus: on the 6th floor you'll find the City Wall Museum with its 17th century uniforms, a cannon, and a model of the old town.
Ries Crater Museum - Nordlingen sits in a 25 km meteor crater created about 15 million years ago. This is where Apollo 16 astronauts trained in 1970. As the ultimate "hostess gift," the town was given a piece of the moon rock brought back by the astronauts, which now sits in the Crater Museum. There are lots of geological and planetary exhibits. If you really love craters, ask about special trips out to the crater quarries organized at the museum.
Town Museum - The Town Museum has a history of the city from the Stone Age through Roman times to the Middle Ages. Check out the 6,000 pewter figures representing the Battle of Nordlingen during the Thirty Years War, one of the decisive moments of the war.
Augenblick Museum - For an even better view, climb the 350 steps of the Daniel Tower of the town church. Right next to the base of the tower is the little Augenblick Musem with its midway exhibits. There are peep shows, panoramas, magic lanterns and silent films. There's also an exhibit of carnival instruments: barrel organs, pianolas, music boxes and gramophones. Some of the exhibits let little fingers try out the treasures. Check for scheduled performances where musicians use the period instruments in the museum.
Just outside of town are the ruins of the Hochhau, built in the 13th century by the von Hürnheim family, and the ruins of the 12th C. Neiderhaus. The Neiderhaus has more left of it, but both make for great moody picnic spots after a hike or bike ride. Not into biking? Ask at City Hall about nature trails around town, laid out for all levels of hikers.
Railway Museum- Heading in or out of town by train? Take time for the Railway Museum located in the old engine room at the train station. There are over 100 engines on display, including 25 steam engines: some are working models you can clamber on.
One of the town specialties is kase spatzle button noodles made with cheese and reduced cream. A little less sharp than the typical American macaroni and cheese, it's definitely a "comfort food."