Situated exactly between Giessen and Marburg, an outstanding low mountain landscape waits to be explored. Gentle hills and lush meadows vary with wide fields and forests. In the villages of Rabenau, characterized by many old, impressive half-timbered houses you can still find evidence that barons and counts resided here. In Londorf, for example, there are still signs of a moated castle, of which some older buildings can still be seen in the so-called Mittelburg, a beautiful Franconian courtyard complex. Adjacent you can find a park designed in the English style, also known as the Burggarten, as well as a garden house built in the style of classicism, the “Londorf Pavilion”. Rainer Maria Rilke once stayed here for a long time and later often dreamed of returning to this spot he loved so much. In a letter to Baroness Julie von Nordeck zur Rabenau he once wrote:
“I often think of the springs that are in the green meadows and see Londorf and the dear old garden that confidently opens its same old-fashioned summer flowers under their protection and has summer everywhere. Summer that trembles as fragrance, that stands as a great uncountable hour on the sundial, summer that is reflected in the shady, dear, unforgettable fountain.”
When you set out to explore Rabenau, you will not fail to notice the impressive Lutheran church in Londorf, which is not by coincidence called the “Cathedral of Rabenau”. The imposing church is a real landmark of the landscape. Many jewels of old German half-timbered art can also be found in Odenhausen/Lumda. The Hofgut Odenhausen, a former nobleman’s estate, is probably the highest free-standing and inhabited half-timbered house in Hesse. Today you will find on the large grounds, among other things, a small and very decorative Hofgut theater perfectly embedded into the old houses. Hofgut Appenborn, once owned by the count, is also a gem of the half-timbered tradition. Not only the old mill house, but also the ceramics workshop, which is attached today, regularly invites visitors to exhibitions and tours.
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