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Nuremburg and Beyond

We spend the last few days in Nuremburg with a history that is documented back to 1050!  Small but mighty, the center of town is surrounded by castle walls built over centuries to protect the residents from enemies.  The backdrop of the city you see is the ancient walls against the modern buildings, an amazing fact as it is said that 90% of the city was damaged or destroyed in WWII.  Those who have heard of Nuremburg may not know of its 1000 year history but know of the trials here, the most famous being in 1945-1946 of Nazi war criminals.  The beauty of the old building is overshadowed somewhat by the ugliness of the town’s history from 1929 until after WWII.  

Our stay in Nuremburg , while not as busy as in Munich, included a ’train’ tour of the older part of the city, a museum to see the crown jewels of a former ruler, a visit to the Palace of Justice, and a visit to the local zoo and, as everywhere,  a LOT of walking!  I found it wonderful to see pictures of the buildings that were mostly destroyed in WWII and how they have been rebuilt; it is amazing how much of history has been recreated.  So on to the highlights! The picture of the spire to the right is a 14th century fountain simply called in English ‘Beautiful Fountain.’ To the left is the outside of Albrecht Dürer 's House. He (1471–1528) is renowned  as Germany's most famous painter. Of course, no real tour of a European city is complete without viewing some of the most beautiful  churches in the world. To the right you see Frauenkirche (Church of Our Lady); an example of brick Gothic architecture, built on the initiative of Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor between 1352 and 1362. I suggest you look it up on the internet as my pictures doesn’t do it justice. 

As we walk around the city, we cross many of the bridge between the two sides including one of the more famous, the museum bridge. This bridge is a central connection between the two sides of Nuremberg (Lorenz and St. Sebald). First built in 1484 as a wooden bridge on two stone arches. 

One of the many sites we rode past on the train tour was the Nuremberg Castle; it  surrounds a large portion of the city with its high walls and numerous towers is actually comprised of three sections: the Imperial castle (Kaiserburg), the former Burgraves' castle (Burggrafenburg), and the buildings erected by the Imperial City at the eastern site (Reichsstädtische Bauten) and dates back to the 11th century. Here I show only two of the many towers.  What I learned on our train tour that I found interesting about the castle is that today and for many years, the castle contains a hostel welcoming guests daily.

Off the train we go and find off at the edge of Hauptmarkt, where the Beautiful Fountain and Frauenkirche are located, Stadmuseum Fembo-Haus.  The museum holds many beautiful items, but I would venture to say that many go to see the Crown Jewels.  However, while originally kept in Nuremburg, only replicas are there today with the originals kept in Vienna.

Our final full day in Nuremburg took us to two sights of extreme difference: the Nuremburg Palace of Justice and Courtroom 600, the sights of the trials for war crimes against the Nazis and the Nuremburg Zoo.

Fortunately, the museum provides audio tour guides as all exhibits are in German and there is SO MUCH to read and learn.  I think I  took more time per exhibit in this museum than I ever have in any museum.  The exhibits were informative if not disturbing in their content.  After about 1 1/2 hours Lucas was getting tired so we finished the tour with highlights, which was okay because the beginning is where you need to focus should you visit.

After leaving the Palace of Justice it is on to happier things...what you ask….lunch and the Zoo!  After a quick lunch at a small café near the courthouse, it is back to public transit to the other side of Nuremburg and the zoo.  Unfortunately, due to construction on the tram line, our mode was by bus; it was okay but clearly not a tram!  While a lot of animals at the zoo seem to elude us, all the big cats as a matter of fact, it was still an enjoyable stop in our journey. With another 6000 steps logged for the zoo, our day ended with a ride back to our apartment (via a bus AND the subway) to rest for our journey the next day to Frankfurt.  While we enjoyed our stay in Nuremburg, Munich still won our hearts!   

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