The 1620 Rathaus is a German Renaissance gem, and a formidable presence on Augsburg’s main square, Rathausplatz —eight stories high and commanding one end of the vast space, it must have seemed like a skyscraper to earlier sensibilities. This rather astonishing appearance is complimented with a colorful history, including a visit from Napoleon in 1820, near-total destruction in World War II bombings, and a painstakingly accurate postwar reconstruction. Nor does this visual grandeur diminish in the main town meeting hall, the Goldener Saal (Golden Chamber), with gold-leaf coffered ceilings and huge wall frescoes, or with the adjacent Perlachturm, a soaring spire capped by a distinctive dome called an “Augsburg onion.” A climb to the top rewards you with a marvelous view of the old town center.