Regional Overview

The Age of Absolutism

The Upper-Main Valley is home to some of the most spectacular cityscapes in Germany. Centered on the city of Würzburg, the region became a global center of art and culture in the Age of Absolutism. From the Renaissance through Rococo, great architects and artists left their indelible mark on the region.

Regional Identity

What to Lookout For

  • The Würzburg Baroque – A variation of the late Baroque and Early Rococo, found everywhere in the region
  • The works of the legendary Court Architect Balthazar Neumann and his workshop.
  • The walled towns of the Main and Saale Rivers




Justin Bunch | CityscapeTravel My suggested travel destinations with the top three destinations highlighted.

What is Main-Franconia?

Here the region of Main-Franconia refers to the parts of the Main valley once controlled by the Prince-Bishops of Würzburg. The Bishops ruled over a dominion in the fertile highlands of the Main Valley. In the north, the forests and hills of the Rhön hide numerous hot springs and great mineral wealth. In the south, the Main Gorge was, as is today, covered in great vineyards, even as far back as the 17th century. In between, stretched endless rollings plains of vibrant farmland, dotted with ancient towns, monasteries, and castles.

The spectacular wealth of the Prince-Bishops came from the strategic bounty of the River Main. Along it flowed trade from all corners of Europe, from the East in the Bohemian Kingdom, from the South on the Danube portage, and from the West via the Rhine. The splendor of Würzburg itself fell victim to the cataclysm of the Second World War, and most of its baroque cityscape was destroyed. However, the legacy of the Bishops remains evident in the great works of art and architecture that survive, a timeless testament to their untrampled wealth and power.

Hiking in the Region

Hiking: Rhön Panorama

Hiking: Rhön Panorama

Bischofsheim is considered the gateway to the Rhön mountains and has a charming old town surrounded by pastoral woodlands. This hike takes you around the…

Hiking: Bad Kissingen and the Saale Valley

Hiking: Bad Kissingen and the Saale Valley

Bad Kissingen is one of the great spa towns in Europe, and this hike is all about exploring the town’s history and its spas. The…

My Subjective Travel Rankings

To understand where the categories come from, see this article here.

9.2 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Accommodation: 8
  • Transportation: 9
  • Volume/Capacity: 10
  • Infrastructure: 9
  • Interactivity: 10

7 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Context: 5
  • Monuments: 8
  • Quality: 8

8.5 / 10

The score is based on the following:

  • Abstraction: 7
  • Tradition: 10



The spectacular achievements of the Franks can be seen in the great monuments of Würzburg, Nürnberg and Bamberg.

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