Liv Hambrett

Germany + Australia + Culture + Motherhood + Home

Amberg, Travel + Life Abroad

Throwing Pretzels

You can’t throw a pretzel down here, without hitting a perfectly pretty little Medieval town (or indeed rather large, beautifully preserved city with buildings dating back to the Romans); within a couple of hours of us, you’ll find Nürnberg, Regensburg, Bamberg, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, München, Amberg – and that’s just sticking to this side of the border. There are more on the other side. And we live in one, something I sometimes overlook, given we’re small fry. Sweet, but small fry.

So last Friday, needing to get out of Weiden for a little bit, we threw a pretzel, and it hit Amberg (not to be confused with Bamberg, which we still haven’t been to but must) a town about forty minutes from our front door.




The Gothic Rathaus, built in 1358

Amberg is about the same size and age as Weiden, but with a much bigger Altstadt and some of its original wall fortification. Nothing like a walled town to make you feel like you’re in a Ken Follet novel. It also lies on the Vils River and there is something about towns built on rivers that feels so romantic. You know, wooden bridges, canoes, old houses reflected in the water, little steps leading from the water to land.



We strolled through on a public holiday, so everything was quiet, except for fellow strollers and those tucked into a cafe and cosily brunching. It was also flipping cold, the first real taste of what’s around the corner – hats, beanies, scarves, bit coats – the whole thing. Not a peep of sunshine, just grey skies and an abundance of Jack Wolfskin jackets. The only colour came from those multi-coloured buildings, shoulder to shoulder, just like in Weiden; it must be an Oberpfalz thing.




Amberg’s ‘defining feature’ – and every self respecting, small-mid sized Medieval Bavarian town needs one – is its Stadtbrille, ‘town spectacles’. In actual fact a bridge, that once formed part of the original fortifications, the Stadtbrille is named so due to the image created by its arches reflecting in the water.


Schön, na?




  1. MontgomeryFest

    4 November, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Love that last shot of the bridge! pretty photos. First taste of winter – grrr.

    1. Liv

      4 November, 2013 at 1:16 pm

      Brrrr, so chilly. And this week as well, looks like it’s going to be sub ten and rainy the whole time. I am comfort eating already …

      1. MontgomeryFest

        4 November, 2013 at 1:19 pm

        exactly. the wool socks are on and I won’t be leaving the flat except for exceptionally good reasons this week.

  2. Ines Burger

    4 November, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    Very cool, I did not know about this “Stadtbrille” thing. I’ll have to check if the Steinerne Brücke here in Regensburg creates a similar picture.
    Another lovely town to visit is Kallmünz, further down the Vils River where it joins the Naab River. It’s much smaller than Amberg or Weiden, but is home to a very active group of artists and has some very nice restaurants.

    1. Liv

      4 November, 2013 at 1:16 pm

      Oh fantastic, thanks for the tip. Always on the look out for new places to drive to and check out, while we’re living down here. I will look into Kallmünz!

  3. MegsFitness

    4 November, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    I want to go there 😀 this looks so beautiful.

    1. Liv

      4 November, 2013 at 4:03 pm

      Very, very sweet. These drives and day trips helps keep the cabin fever I get from being so hemmed in by hills and mountains, without a coastline in sight, at bay.

  4. Lorraine McIntosh

    5 November, 2013 at 4:14 am

    Hi Liv, Jack and I will be in Rothenburg ob der Tauber from 22/12 for 5 nights. Would be great to catch up if you have some time.

    1. Liv

      5 November, 2013 at 8:54 am

      Oh nooooo, we drive up to Kiel (7 hours north of here) for Christmas on the 21st! What a pity, we’ll just miss each other! Where else will your travels take you?

  5. Isa

    5 November, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    An abundance of JW jackets! Haha! Since my return to Dland, I’ve stopped counting how many I’ve seen. They’re bloomin’ everywhere. They’re probably good quality, but…..

    1. Liv

      5 November, 2013 at 7:59 pm

      I feel that the day I buy and wear one, will be the day it’s all over … the day I officially relinquish my Australian passport and take the German one.

  6. Lorraine

    7 November, 2013 at 3:47 am

    Arrive Dusseldorf 8 Dec, dept for Rothenburg 22 Dec, back to Dusseldorf 27 Dec, dept for Paris 6 Jan, back to Dusseldorf 12 Jan, dept for Sydney 19 Jan. Somewhere in there we will have a couple of nights away from Dusseldorf. Any suggestions for a winter mini break (ie not the wine areas)?

    1. Liv

      19 November, 2013 at 9:33 am

      It depends on what you’re after. Bavaria in the winter is so beautiful, but I am always partial to the coast – up north has some lovely villages on the sea. Of course, that means you’d have to travel a bit! Also, I hear fantastic things about Freiburg and the Black Forest, you could try there!

  7. Lorraine

    20 November, 2013 at 4:22 am

    I had said I’d like to go north because I’ve not been in that area before but Jack is leaning towards the Black Forest. Pity we can’t meet up. Happy Christmas to you both from us both. X

    1. Liv

      21 November, 2013 at 8:25 am

      The Black Forest will be gorgeous, hopefully you’ll see some snow, and the towns down there are apparently so romantic. Merry Christmas and hopefully see you soon! xxx

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