Berlin to Münster (June 4th - 7th)

Berlin to Münster (June 4th - 7th)

Written By: Art&Heidi

We had hot weather and wonderful roads to ride through the Saxony countryside. As has become the norm, we choose our route based on milestones along the way, in this case anywhere to cool off from the unseasonably hot temperatures.  We found lakes to stop at, but when we couldn't we improvised by finding the church (we drive by one in almost every town), which will have a graveyeard, which will have a hose to water the flowers on the gravestones. Heidi will wet her t-shirt and scarf while Art will just pour running water over himself to soak himself completely, ah the relief. We agree now on how to classify the tempurature as a 2-3 or 4 Burg day, (the number of towns we will pass through before Art is completely dry).

Magdeburg

Magdeburg is a beautiful little university town on the banks of the Elbe river. We had fun exploring the old town and joined the locals eating dinner on the river steps. While exploring we turned a corner to find a most interesting building, called Grüne Zitadelle (Green Citadel). The complex is a whimsical, fanciful complex of apartments, shops, cafés, a hotel, and even a kindergarten. It was the last design of the late Austrian “alternative architect” Friedensreich Hundertwasser, who called his big pink project an “oasis for humanity and nature in a sea of rational houses.” Quite a striking contrast to the 13-century cathedral just 2 blocks away.

We stayed in a great travellers’ hotel, but had a hard time finding the place because of my reliance on GPS and the enormous amount of road construction going on in the summer. Some things don’t change between Canada and Germany, apparently road construction CANNOT take place except between May-September ☹.

Hamelin

Hameln is best known for the tale of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. The Alt Stadt (Old Town) is truly like a German fairy tale: cobblestone streets, ornately carved and painted buildings 100’s of years old. Hameln sits on the banks of the river Weser surrounded by 13th century walls that serves as the functioning core of this bustling little city. We took the ‘rat tour’ which guides tourists along the cobblestoned streets with little rat signs directing to all the main attractions: a fascinating way to learn about the legend as well as the cool old city.

Incidentally, Heidi played the title role of the Pied Piper in 4th grade so was very familiar with the story and even remembered some words of the play (she shared the part with her friend Gail Downey).  We needed a picture with the piper himself to commemorate the visit.

Münster

Heidi and I called Münster the burg of many Kirche, (churches). No less than 12 churches adorned the Alt Stadt with the most famous dating back to the 13th century. The old Schloss (castle) is now part of the university and we did a full walking tour of the town as well as the university area. We crashed the university beer garden for cheap beer and bratwurst (and really loud music!): by far the eldest participants but welcome!

Fun Facts

We are finding church graveyards to be quite useful. If you are looking for a (dead) quiet hotel find one across the street from the graveyard. While some little towns don’t have a park, the graveyard is always a shady, green spot for a picnic.  And a guaranteed source of water to soak down on hot days.

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Countries: Germany
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