If Disney were to mock up a small, medieval German town, it would probably resemble QUEDLINBURG, which lines the Bode River on the gently rolling Harz foothills, 59km southwest of Magdeburg. With well over a thousand crooked half-timbered houses crowding cobblestone streets, and much of its medieval fortifications and churches well preserved, the town is deservedly popular and often bustles with visitors, but it’s still large enough to escape the strolling masses at even the busiest times.

Quedlinburg’s foundation dates back to a fortress built by Henry I (the Fowler) in 922, after which it quickly became a favourite residence of Saxon emperors; in 968 Otto I founded an imperial abbey there. The town flourished in the Middle Ages as a Hanseatic League member and centre for dyes, paper production and engineering. Even today, plastic production and agricultural research are important, giving the town a purpose beyond simply being a living museum.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Germany features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

The 10 best Baltic beach resorts

The 10 best Baltic beach resorts

European beach holidays haven’t always been just about the Mediterranean. A century ago, the resorts along the Baltic Sea were just as likely to attract the E…

16 Mar 2018 • Jonathan Bousfield insert_drive_file Article
How Syrians are keeping their culture alive in Berlin

How Syrians are keeping their culture alive in Berlin

Syria has been shattered by conflict since March 2011; more than 5 million people have been forced to flee the country and rebuild their lives elsewhere. Jessi…

28 Dec 2017 • Jessica Bateman local_activity Special feature
20 picturesque Christmas destinations

20 picturesque Christmas destinations

Dreaming of a trip this Christmas? We're here to help. From glittering cities to a few snowy escapes, here are 20 classic destinations for a festive break. …

12 Dec 2017 • Rough Guides Editors camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right