With only 5,000 inhabitants but a capital nevertheless, this little town on the banks of the Unstrut is the undisputed epicentre of the Saale-Unstrut wine region. Nowhere else around here can you see so many vineyards and terraced hillsides with the characteristic vintner huts.
This is where A-list vintners like Bernhard Pawis perfect their creations and is the home of the Wine Museum which resides high above the town in Schloss Neuenburg. This is where the wine history of Central Germany is recorded and where, on the second weekend of September every year, the Freyburger Wine Festival takes place, the biggest in Central Germany.
The Sachsen-Anhalt is also the home of Rotkäppchen, one of the largest producers of sparkling wine in the country. Their cellars are open daily to visitors all year round and an appointment is not required.
The Nebra sky disk is not the only artefact found in the Saale and Unstrut region that has opened a window to the past. The Goseck Solar Observatory, which is more than 6,800 years old, takes you back in time to when our ancestors studied the patterns of the sky to help them determine, for example, the best time to plant and harvest crops.
The Goseck circle, the oldest known solar observatory, was first spotted from the air in 1991. To get a full understanding of the history and significance of Goseck it’s best to visit the information centre before going to the observatory.
There’s a special audio presentation for children and food and refreshments are available at the Schloss Schenke cafe in the castle courtyard.
Leaving Bad Kösen, home to the excellent winery Weingut Lützkendorf which produces fine wines and is open daily, the Wine Route continues towards the Thuringian state border.
A magical sight awaits you; you will see instantly why this region is known as "the land of castles”. Near Saaleck, the Rudelsburg towers into the sky, rising 85 metres above a steep hillside. The brightest jewel in the “land of castles”, newly restored, with a great restaurant, it’s a go-to place for travellers on the Romanesque Road which also passes here.