THE DEUTSCHES WEIHNACHTSMUSEUM TRACES THE HISTORY OF CHRISTMAS OVER TIME:
For anyone interested in knowing more about the Christmas traditions through the times, the Deutsches Weihnachtsmuseum (German Christmas Museum) in Rothenburg ob der Tauber should not be missed.
A Little Hidden Treasure
The Käthe Wohlfahrt Weihnachtsdorfes (Käthe Wohlfahrt Christmas Village) is a Christmas wonderland for anyone who loves Christmas and the celebration of the Christmas tradition. The shop and its dazzling contents are hugely popular with visitors from around the world. However, hidden within the Käthe Wohlfahrt complex is the German Christmas Museum that tends to get missed.
The Deutsches Weihnachtsmuseum
The Deutsches Weihnachtsmuseum is the brainchild of Harald Wohlfahrt, son of the original founders of the Käthe Wohlfahrt family business. The idea for the museum came about when he was
reminiscing on the traditional Christmas celebrations during the times of his forefathers. He thought that it would be worthwhile to record the historical development of the Christmas celebration, and the museum does just that through its nice collection of displays.
The Christmas Celebration
For anyone interested in the history of Christmas, the Deutsches Weihnachtsmuseum traces the historical timeline of Christmas traditions through its exhibits. If you’re not the “museum-type”, don’t worry, as the Deutsches Weihnachtsmuseum does not goes into comprehensive or academic studies of the Christmas tradition and everything related to it.
On the contrary, it provides interesting information about changes in Christmas traditions and practices over time through its exhibits. The exhibits also show the origins of Christmas decorations, Christmas trees, Saint Nicholas, Christmas presents, Christmas cards, etc. and documents their evolution over time.
Yes, Christmas trees were not always decorated with sparkling glass baubles and stars. One of the oldest reports in 1419 tells about the Christmas tree being decorated with apples, nuts, gingerbread and wafers. It was decorated by the guild of bakery workers in Freiburg. The tree was also decorated with bits of food like cheese, sausage or sugar cane which children would raid.
Set within the premises of the Käthe Wohlfahrt Christmas Village, the museum is frequently mistaken for the Kathe Wohlfarht shop in the many Tripadvisor reviews.
The Deutsches Weihnachtsmuseum is small but compact. You can spend 15 minutes in it or two hours, depending on how interested you are in learning a bit about the history of all things to do with Christmas. To enter the Museum you buy a token from the Käthe Wohlfahrt cashier downstairs. It costs Euros 4 per person.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber
Map of Rothenburg