Roadtrip through Germany

Castle Lichtenstein

This year everything is a little bit different. While I normally start my travel with telling you my backpack got lost on the way to wherever I am going, this year I went a little crazy.

Car packed 1-Germany
Car packed 2- Germany
Roadsign-Germany

Yes same amount of time, but huge suitcase and 3 boxes. What having the space of a car can do.

Also I knew we have sometimes funny names in Germany for our villages, but I have not seen “Killer” before. And guess what- you can also find a museum for horsewhips.

My first stop is Castle Lichtenstein. A beautiful castle build on an old castle of knights from the 13th century. The old castle was destroyed in a fire.

Knight-Castle Lichtenstein
Bridge-Castle Lichtenstein

Later King Wilhelm build his hunting house here and when he died his nephew inherited the land and house. He had read the novel “Lichtenstein” of Wilhelm Hauff and decided to build a palace on top of the castles foundation.

You can enter the palace via a small bridge, which in former times was a drawbridge to ensure the safety of the castle.

Since the castle itself is build on top of a rock you have a wonderful view over the surrounding area.

View-Castle Lichtenstein
Blautopf-Blaubeuren-Roadtrip through Germany

Blaubeuren

Today I visited the small town Blaubeuren. It is famous for ist small lake Blautopf. The Blautopf starts out being green at the corners and gets a deep blue in the middle.

There is even a story from Eduard Mörike that a mermaid regained her happiness here.

The lake is the second largest intermitted spring of Germany and therefore responsible for the water supply in the region.

Meermaid-Blaubeuren
Monastery-Blaubeuren
Blautopf-Blaubeuren

This is one of the reasons the monastery was build right next to it.Here, you can see it mirrored in the lake.

The old monastery was build 1085 and rebuild between 1466 ad 1501.

Monastery full-Blaubeuren
Half-timbered house-Blaubeuren

In the old town of Blaubeuren you can find a lot of nice half-timbered houses like the small big house or the town library.

On my way to my next stop Schönau am Königsee, I made a short stop at the famous Chiemsee and had a leisurely walk here.

Chiemsee-Roadtrip through Germany

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Königssee

Today I decided it is time for a hike. I took the cable car up to the middle station of the Jenner. Once there I hiked to Königsbach-Alm, Schneibsteinhouse and Stahlhouse and finally to the top of the Jenner. The route is about 700m in hight but gives you beautiful views all around.

Hike-Königssee
Watzmann-Königssee

Betwenn Königsbach-Alm and Schneibsteinhouse you have a wonderful view of the Watzmann.  It is told that King Watzmann was wild and barbaric. One time when it really got bad he, his wife and children became the mountain. To read the whole story you can read on here.

Going further on, from the Stahlhouse you can view the Austrian Bluntautal.

View to Austria-Königssee
on top of jenner-Königssee

When you finally arrive at the top of the Jenner you can overlook the Berchdesgardener Land as well as the Lake Königssee.

Right by the lake you can also find one of the most difficult bob runs. Sliding down with your bob you have mountains in your back and the Lake Königssee with it’s panorama in front.

I am not sure if the professionals going down have an eye for this.

Bob run-Königssee
view form bob-Königssee
Church-St.-Bartholoma-Königssee

Today I went on a boat and hike trip at the Lake Königsse. From Schönau I took the boat to Salet with a quick stop in St. Bartholomä. St. Bartholomä is known for its church.

From the boat you already get a good view on where you are going.

From Slet it is a short walk to the “Obersee” which is a lot smaler than Lake Köngisee, but has just as amazing views.

Obersee-Königssee
Obersee-towards-Watzmann-Königssee

Looking back you can see Lake Königssee as well as the Watzmann.

In front you can see already Austria.

Once you walked to the other end of the Obersee and a little further, there is the longest waterfall from Germany. Unfortunately there was very little water this time of the year.

One curious mountain you pass while going from Königssee towards St. Bartholomä. It is an echo mountain- our captain showed us the effect by playing the trumpet, very cool sound.

Obersee-towards-Austria-Königssee
Wooden Earth-Wunsiedel

Wunsiedel

Today I had the longest drive of my tour. From Königsee to Wunsiedel.

One of my best friends now are the brown signs we have right next to the highway in Germany. Here you can see what is close by the highway. This is how I found this today:

This is in “Steinberg am See”. You can walk up the wooden earth getting information on the way up. There are also small balance exercises.

All along the way you have a beautiful view over the Lake and the Landscape.

Steinberg am See-Wunsiedel
Sled down-Wunsiedel

The best- you don’t have to go back down, just take the slide!

After that short break and another hour of driving I arrived at Wunsiedel. This city is in the “Fichtelgebierge”. Here the writer Jean Paul was born.

City Wunsiedel
Kopentator-Wunsiedel

Here you can see the “Kopentator” the old city gate tower. It was build 1467 to 1471.

Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg

To get ready for the hike in the Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg you can download an app with an audioguide for the Labyrinth. Oh and the information to take good shoes, I would take it seriously here. Also you might wear cloth in which you can crawl and rub against the rock with.

Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg
Luisensitz-Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg

But let’s start at the beginning. One of the first rock formations you can see is the “Luisensitz”.

The name of this formation as well as the name of the castle is from Queen Luise. She realy liked it here!

One of the next granite formations with a name you can find on the Jean-Paul plaza. The Umbrellarock- can you see it?

Umbrella-Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg
Three-brothers-Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg

On the way back down you can see the formation “The three brothers”. According to a myth a giant rolled the dice here.

Further down you can see Napoleons hat a formation that is 2,5m wide, 6m long and 2,5m high. It weights 43 metric tons. All this is only hold in place at a very small point.

Napolions-hat-Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg
Helgoland-Rock Labyrinth Luisenburg

The last of the formations I would like to share with you is called Island Helgoland. It is 7m high and one of the formations most likely to te story of sugar smuggling in the time it was build. If you want hear the full story- go there and see for yourself!

Quedlinburg

Quedlinburg was founded in 500 from Duke Quitilo, but the first documented reference was 922. In 924 Otto III gave Quedlinburg the market, coin and customs right, which made Quedlinburg into a town.

The town hall has a tower with no windows on the left hand side. This was to collect taxes.

Town hall Quedlinburg
Half-timbered houses-Quedlinburg

Quedlinburg has 2600 half-timbred houses that the polish started to renovate during the DDR times. Most of the renovation of the houses was done after Germany was reunited in 1989. The half- timbred houses are out of five epochs.

There is even a house with has all the zodiac signs below twelve of its windows.

Zodiac signs-Quedlinburg
Kunsthalle-Bremen

Bremen

After the drive to Bremen it was time for a first walk around. Since I will take a city tour tomorrow I skipped the old town today and went straight to the Ostertor.

The damage cube is in front of the “Kunsthalle”- in a park between the Schnoorvirtel and Ostertor.

In the Ostertor part of Bremen there are some small regional shops. This part of the town has a beautiful Jugendstil houses.

Jugendstil houses-Bremen
Weser Boardwalk-Bremen

Once at the Weser boardwalk you have be good view above the Weser.

And you can find the St. Martini Church.

St. Mrtini Church-Bremen
Bremer Stadtmusikanten

The next day I visit all the known sights of Bremen.

Let’s start with the most commonly known the Bremer Stadtmusikanten. The story from Gebrüder Grimm goes as follows. First the donkey is to old to be used and should be butchered. He decides to run away and become a town musician of Bremen. On his way there he meets first a dog then a cat and last but not least a cock. All of them are old and decide to go with the donkey to Bremen.

But you might ask yourself- why Bremen. Well this is because Bremen was a free town, only taking orders from the Emperor. The sight to show this is the “Roland” which still stand in front of the town hall.

Roland-Bremen
Schnoor-key-Bremen

Bremen used to have 4 mayors in the 16th century. Each of them had a different field of expertise.

In the Schnoor Virtel you can find a lot of small houses one of them having the Bremer Key out front. The key stands for taking the worldly key from Petrus and is part of Bremens history.

Schnoor-10-Bremen

Workshop “Time to reflect”

Time to reflect

Do you see the fog or the possibilities?
REFLECT what you want!

Dates

Another famous street of Bremen is the Böttcherstraße. This was close to the port and all the trade was done here. You can also find the famous carillon in this street, that was dedicated to the sailors going over the Atlantic ocean.

Böttcherstr.-Bremen
Kiel Canal-Roadtrip through Germany

Sankt Peter Ording

From Bremen to Sankt Peter Ording my first stop is the Kiel Canal. This Canal connects the North Sea with the Baltic Sea.

Almost in Sankt Peter Ording I pass the Eider Barrage. This was built to safeguard the land behind from spring tides.

Eider Barrage-Roadtrip through Germany
Dunes-St Peter Ording

Finally in Sankt Peter Ording I had to walk over the dunes to first get my feet into sand and than in the water.

Feet in sand-St Peter Ording
Feet in water-St Peter Ording

There really is not much to say about today.  I rented one of the beach chairs and enjoyed the views.

Beach Chairs- St Peter Ording

Kiel

Today I left a rather stormy Sankt Peter Ording and arrived a couple of hours later in the still windy but sunny Kiel.

Kiel is known for the Kieler Woche, a huge sailing event, but is also a very nice city.

City Walk

I started my city walk at the “Hörnerbrücke”. Here you can see the big cruise ships docking.

Harbour-Kiel
Train Station-Kiel

Right across the street is the train station. It was build in 1895 and destroyed during World War 2. In 1999 it was completely rebuild.

In the middle of the shopping mile at the old market you can find St. Nikolai. The church was build in 1242 and is the oldest buildings of Kiel.

St. Nikolai-Kiel
Sealion-Kiel

After visiting the castle of Kiel I went down to the Kielline right at the Kieler Förde. Here I finally met my beloved seals. The Aquarium has free seal feedings everyday at 10 am and 2:30pm. Of course I was in the first row.

After spending some time here I walked along the “Kleiner Kiel”. This used to be connected to the Baltic see, but now it is only below the surface. From here you have a wonderful view of the opera and the city hall tower.

Opra-Kiel
Harbor cruise-Kiel

Harbor Cruise

In the afternoon I went on a harbor cruise for almost 2 hours. The first thig here is the Naval Yard the biggest shipyard in Kiel.

Next we pass the Submarine Memorial honoring the staff from World War 2.

Submarine Memorial-Kiel
Marine Memorial-Kiel

All they way down the Harbor, almost in the Baltic Sea there is Laboe with the Marine Memorial, honoring originally all the marines who lost their lifes in World War 1. In 1954 it was dedicated to all the sailors left in the sea.

On our way back we pass one end of the Kiel Canal. It takes 8 hours to cross it, instead of going around in two days.

Kiel Canal-Kiel
Parliamen-Kiel

The last important sight we pass is the Parliament of Schleswig Holstein.

Travemünde

My last stop up in the north at the Baltic Sea is Travemünde. Travemünde is a cute little town with a nice promenade for shopping and a long boardwalk at the sea.

Travemünde-Roadtrip through Germany
Hotel at the beach-Travemünde

You can even rent a roofed wicker beach chair for one night and sleep at the beach. Unfortunately the weather was getting bad, rainy and cold so this was not an option for me. But I am sure in summer this is fun.

Concerning the weather, have you ever lain in bed at 10:30pm about to go to sleep and than a 1loud voice tells you ” This is the fire department. There is a possibility of flooding because of a storm tide. Make sure you and your belongings are safe. Please tell your neighbors!” This absolutely was a first for me. So I went down to the front desk and asked if everything is ok. It seemed it was nothing new to the person there. I was told to go to sleep, there will not be a problem.

In the morning you could see the water has gone higher than the day before, but it really was not that bad. Still I wondered half the night.

Travemünde also has the oldest Lighthouse. It was build in 1539.

Lighthouse-Travemünde
Sand sculptures-Travemünde

Every year a lot of sand carvers come to Travemünde to build sculptures. This year the overall topic was fairy tails. It is amazing what they do with sand. Can you guess what this is? A small hint, you have seen the real Statue as well as read the story.

Steel Mill Völklingen

My last stop on the tour for this year: Völklingen. But what is so special about this small town close to Saarbrücken? It has the world’s only UNESCO World Heritage which is an industrial site. The region was embossed by coal and steel. So it is no surprise that the steel mill build in 1873 is now open to the public- for everybody to see the history of steel mills.

Volklingen-steel-mill-Roadtrip through Germany
Sintering plant-Völklingen

It was closed in 1986 and declared World Heritage in 1994. Since than a lot of the mill has been maintained for tourism and there is a round parcourse where you can get a lot of information about the mill as well as making steel.

The tour starts at the sintering plant. Here you can also watch a short movie about the steel mill and get some background information.

Next  comes the ore hall- here are now variating shows. After that you get to the huge storage facility for all the raw materials. Here they got loaded into the wagons of the overhead conveyer and transported to the blast furnace.

wagons of overhead conveyer-Völklingen
blower plant-Völklingen

Last you get to the blower plant, with its huge air pumps to create the air for the blast furnaces.

Along the way you always find train tracks, because this was the way to transport materials in, within and out of the steel mill.

If you plan on going here, plan at least 2 to 3 hours. It is really huge!

train-Völklingen

What I took home from my Roadtrip through Germany:

  • Now I finaly know why there are those brown signs on highways
  • There are a lot of really nice places close to home
  • NINA Warn-App is good to have

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