Sights & Culture


The wide hilltop of the Sternberg is one of the highest elevations of the Alb around Münsingen. The hill is about 100m higher than the Alb plateau and raises the Groß Lautertal valley with almost 200 m. The wandering hut of the Swabian association was constructed at the highest point where you have the possibility to stop for a bite to eat or even to stay overnight.

In the immediate vicinity of the wandering hut you can find the tower of the Sternberg with an excellent panorama into the distance. This lookout tower is the landmark of Gomadingen.

The source of the Lauter

The source of the Lauter is located in the district Offenhausen. It is the beginning of the Big Lauter Valley and on the following 44 km it passes romantic castles, small villages as well as juniper heathlands and finally ends in the Donau. Five sources with altogether 150 l/s bulk volume feeds the Big Lauter in the source in Offenhausen. The characteristic is that the water does not seek away but the geological conditions are such as good that the water remains on the volcanic rock. Directly behind the source of the Lauter (the former convent walls), the river falls 3m into a small hydro-electric power plant. In 1975, the plant has been decommissioned but it provides again current since 2006. Thanks to the association concerning the reactivation of the hydraulic power pump-station in Offenhausen, you are able to visit it.

Documentation center Grafeneck

The documentation center in Grafeneck is a place of memories. Between January and September 1940, 10.654 patients of sanatoriums above all from Baden, Württemberg and Bayern were killed by the Nazis over there. Grafeneck is meant for death camps of the Action T4 of the national socialist dictatorship. In memory of the victims of murder, it was built an open memorial place.

Additionally, in 2005 it was built the documentation center in which the history of single victims is described. Guided tours and seminars are offered in this center.


Memorial Grafeneck with documentation center
Grafeneck 3
72532 Gomadingen
phone: +49 (0)7385 966-206
fax: +49 (0)7385 966-208

The Stud museum in Offenhausen

The Gothic church of the former Dominican monastery “Maria Gnadenzell” which was constructed in the 14th century is situated in the middle of the Stud in Offenhausen, directly at the source of the Lauter. Amongst the founders and the complete neighboring nobility the monastery was known as utility for the unmarried feminine relatives. The life of the nuns consisted of silence, prayer and atonement for the souls. On the first floor of the church you can get more information about the life in the monastery as well as about how the monasteries were used after the reformation.

Different changing art exhibitions which give attention to horses present special highlights during the course of the year. The excellent acoustics of the church is used in the context of concerts. The origin of the Stud in Marbach, the occupations as well as the meaning of today’s horse breeding are showed to the visitors in the ground floor. You get to know Bairactar, the founder of the world-famous Weil-Marbach Arabians and Julmond, the Trakhener stallion. The visitors can see marvelous historical carriages, sledges, harnesses, saddles and stirrups. Informative and interesting films give insights into the working day of the Stud in Marbach. The riding simulator is a threat for young and old because every person is in the position to find the fortune on the back of the horses.

Opened form 1st May until 1st November
  • From Tuesday to Friday: From 2 pm to 5 pm
  • Saturday: From 1 pm to 5 pm
  • Sunday and public holidays: From 11 am to 5 pm
  • Groups are welcomed out of the business hours after reservation
Entrance fees:
  • Adults: 3 Euro
  • Children and adolescents up to 18 years: 2 Euro
  • Groups: they get reduced prices

Exhibitions in the town hall

An especial jewel is the gallery of Hollenberg in the town hall in Gomadingen where the pictures of the landscapist Felix Hollenberg (1868 – 1945) are exhibited. With more than 350 drawings, oils and watercolored paintings, Gomadingen disposes of one of the most important collections of Felix Hollenberg. With the donation of the graphic work of his father, Dr. Erika Schad-Hollenberg, the daughter of the artist, allowed the public access to his etchings. These include motives of the surrounding area of Gomadingen, the Big Lauter Valley and naturally of the Swabian Alb. Since 1988, the Hollenberg paintings from the estate of Hans Wiedmann are exhibited in the Hollenberg gallery.

Free entry

Furthermore, there is an exhibition of agricultural machines of former times in the town hall in Gomadingen. You can visit the different historical equipments under the subjects “from the wheat to the bread” and “from the flax to the linen”.

The castle Grafeneck and its Café

Since 1928, the castle accommodated a home for disabled persons of the Samaritan endowment Stuttgart, the new proprietor. In October 1939, the Württemberg Department of the Interior seized the institution for purposes of the empire with the charge to clear the castle within two days. Grafeneck was reconstructed for the first killing sanatorium of the Action T4 and was therefore the example for all further killing facilities of the Nazi regime. In 1947, Grafeneck got it back from the French authorities. Since then the castle serves as a welfare and social institution for disabled persons.

The café is a meeting place for people with and without handicap and gives people the possibility to enjoy a marvelous view in the Groß Lautertal valley. Every Sunday and public holidays the visitors can benefit from coffee, cakes and refreshing drinks. On some Sundays there is a small light entertainment program. Therefore it is worth making a detour to the café in Grafeneck. The feature: The café is run honorary by the circle of friends Grafeneck and engaged associations and groups.

Opening hours:

Every Sunday and public holidays
From May to September: from 2 pm to 6 pm
From October to April: from 2 pm to 4 pm

Something about the history

The today’s municipal area has been colonized already very early; numerous barrows and barrow groups of the Hallstatt period point this out. Since then the colonization did not interrupt. The Alblimes, a Roman borderline, which connected the castles on the Swabian Alb with each other, passed Gomadingen because there was also a Roman castle together with a village.

The castle Blankenstein which was constructed between 1150 and 1250 was situated on a rocky promontory in a side valley of the Lauter. Nowadays you can only see a stump of the spire and some tracks in the ground. In the twelfth century, the lineage of the same name held the domination of Dapfen and Wasserstetten. You can find the rests of that castle hidden in the forest on the left side of the street between Wasserstetten and Eglingen.

Since 1818 it is demonstrable that a lot of sheeps were washed in the Lauter (at the beginning in Dapfen and from 1837 to 1948 in Wasserstetten) and afterwards it was carried out the sheep shearing. Wasserstetten was one of the oldest and most visited places of Southern Germany to carry out this ritual. Over more than 100 years, up to 20.000 sheeps were washed in the Lauter in Wasserstetten every year. Dozens of sheep-herds went with their herds to Wasserstetten in order to wash their animals. Today you can see a bronze figure which shows a sheep washers and which is evocative of the historical sheep wash.


In an old warehouse in Dapfen, Eberhard Läpple opened a soap-manufacture as well as a chocolaterie which is a very pleasing destination for guests, native people and especially for groups. Both in the chocolaterie and in the soap-manufacture, the visitors have the possibility to watch the professionals at work. That enables an insight into the old handicraft. Every Wednesday apart from 2 o’clock, it takes place an open production. Guided tours for small and bigger groups are offered on request. The selling of chocolate products is situated in the second floor and the soaps are sold in the first floor. After the viewing, you can be pampered with specialties like coffee from the Amazon or a delicious hot chocolate.