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Wernigerode

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Travel Charme Hotel Gothisches Haus

ABOVE: The Hotel Gothisches Haus is on the Marktplatz, facing the Rathaus or town hall. TOP INSET PHOTO: A few of the Hotel Anger's rooms open directly onto the passage between the courtyard and the street.

Transportation and directions

Wernigerode is on the northeastern side of the Harz National Park near the old "Green Border" between East and West Germany. The Deutsche Bahn has a station in Wernigerode, and you can get highway directions at ViaMichelin. Use the official Wernigerode city map to get an overview of the town.

Hotels

Hotel am Anger courtyardWernigorode's official Gastgeber, or accommodations directory, lists several dozen hotels, pensions, and guesthouses, plus a handful of religious institutes and youth hostels. Ferienhäuser (vacation homes) and Ferienwohnungen (holiday apartments) are also in plentiful supply.

For online listings, browse the tourist office's German-language  Hotels & Unterkunft pages or Google Translate's English version. (Warning: The Google software occasionally  translates addresses, so that "Breitstrasse" becomes "Width Strasse" or "Wide Street," which can make it hard to find locations on a map.)

I can personally vouch for the Travel Charme group's four-star superior Hotel Gothisches Haus (see my illustrated review), and the three-star Hotel am Anger, shown in the inset photo, looked pleasant with its half-timbered building and bucolic courtyard. (I met the Hotel am Anger's manager on an English-language walking tour that she was guiding for the tourist office.)

Restaurants

Kartoffelhaus signWernigerode is both a popular tourist town and a business center for the northeastern Harz Mountains region, so there's no shortage of places to eat and drink in the town.

I had a pleasant dinner at the Kartoffelhaus (Markt 14), which has a rustic potato-farming theme. (The roast pork that accompanied my plate of noodles was served in a miniature wheelbarrow.) For restaurant and café listings, see the Wernigerode Tourism's Web site at the link under "Tourist Information" below.

Shopping

Wernigerode has more shopping than you might expect in a town of 34,000, and some businesses are geared specifically to tourists. For example, the HSB narrow-gauge railroad's Dampfladen No. 6 (Marktplatz) sells railroad gifts and souvenirs in addition to train tickets, and the Web site of the Wernigeröder Kunst- und Kulturverein (art and cultural association) is an excellent guide to local galleries, handicraft shops, and artisans' studios. (If you don't read German, see Google Translate's English version.)

Tourist information

Rathaus signWernigerode Tourismus, a.k.a. Wernigerode Tourist Information, has an office on the left side of the Rathaus (Town Hall) on the Marktplatz in the center of the old town.

The tourist office's information desk offers a full range of brochures, maps, etc., mostly in German but with a few excellent English-language publications such as Wernigerode: Beautiful Views of the Colourful Town in the Harz-Region. (The latter is an illustrated four-page brochure that describes sights in and around the town.)

Wernigerode Tourismus also has guided walking tours throughout the year and can help you find a place to stay if you arrive without hotel reservations.

To plan your trip, select your language from the Google Translate menu at the tourist office's Web site, www.wernigerode-tourismus.de. You'll also find useful information in English at the Wernigerode municipal Web site, www.wernigerode.de/en/.

For tourist information about the Harz Region in general, visit www.harzinfo.de. (Most pages are in German, but Google Translate can help you decipher them.)

Next page: More Wernigerode photos




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