Köln Waterfront Church

Köln (Cologne) is located in the largest city in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. Köln survived the largest bombardment of any city in Europe by the Royal Air Force In World War Two. It was nearly destroyed in the process but has been thoughtfully reconstructed. This waterfront church is a example of the reconstructed city.

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Köln Waterfront Church

Rathaus-Glockenspiel Detail

Last year i published a post on the famous Glockenspiel in München Bavaria. Although it was a nice scenic picture of Town Hall where the Rathaus-Glockenspiel is located it occurred to me that you really couldn’t see the detail of this famous landmark. I recently found this closeup which provides a much better view of what the Rathaus-Glockenspiel is all about and why each day hundreds gather to see and hear the performance.

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Rathaus-Glockenspiel Detail

Magnificent Ceiling

We wandered in to a small dark Church in Munich. It was very dark, small and not real impressive. We went through the small Church museum and the place was also small and relatively unimpressive. Then we went upstairs and discovered another another hall of worship and wow, it was flooded with light, stain glass windows and one of the most beautiful ceilings I have ever seen.

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Magnificent Ceiling

Heidelberg Sculpture

I wish we had more time when we were in Heidelberg. I feel we only scratched the depth of the city and want to go back there in the Summer since it was cold,rainy and grey the whole time we were there. I did have time to stop to take this picture of the this unusual sculpture with the Heidelberg castle in the background.

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Heidelberg Sculpture

Heidelberg Sculpture

Cathedral Garden Köln

We toured Köln with Claudia, a truly awful guide. Most of the guides we had on our Viking River Tour were exceptional but not Claudia. She was so awful we eventually turned off our headsets and strolled behind her. We got tired of hearing her psycho babble about World War 2 and how awful the Americans were. Köln was the most bombed city in Germany and the destruction was truly awful but we wanted to learn about the culture of the city, not a faux history lesson on the war. Once she pointed to a picture of Eisenhower and refereed to him as General MacArthur, her knowledge was not only prejudicial but inaccurate.

However she did point out one thing we might not have noticed on our own. This is the beautiful terrace garden and sculpture along the back of the Cologne Cathedral. Pretty on a gray rainy day but probably wonderful in the Spring and Summer.

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Cathedral Garden Köln

Cathedral Garden Köln

The Barrel Room at Marksburg Castle

Wine was really important in the 15th Century. Fresh water supply was not always available and this was especially true if a castle was under siege. Each castle we visited had a large wine cellar. At Marksburg Castle it was on the ground floor near the stable. While these barrels are huge they aret not as large as the one in Heidelberg Castle which is thought to be the largest wine barrel in the world and almost impossible to photograph.

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The Barrel Room at Marksburg Castle

The Barrel Room at Marksburg Castle

Marksburg Castle

Last month I published a post about Marksburg Castle. This post contains some more detailed information and additional images of this UNESCO World Heritage Site

Along the Rhine River is a stretch known as the Rhine Gorge which is a UNESCO world heritage site. Forty castles line both sides of this section of the river. Marksburg is the only castle that was never destroyed and sits above the town of Braubach. The fortress was used for protection rather than a residence for royal families.

Originally it was stone keep was built at the current location in 1100 by the Eppstein family and expanded into a castle around 1117 to protect the town of Braubach. When French emperor Napoleon seized the Holy Roman Empire in 1803 he gave the Marksburg to his ally the Duke of Nassau for his service. He used the castle as a prison and as a home for disabled soldiers. The castle has one of the first known indoor privies.

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Marksburg Southern View

Marksburg Southern View

Marksburg Dinning Room

Marksburg Dinning Room

Marksburg Privy

Marksburg Privy

Braubach View

Braubach View