Monday Travel Update – Half Way Through Germany Edition

Panoramic image of the Upper Middle Rhine River Valley

Panoramic image of the Upper Middle Rhine River Valley

I am now half way through my German World Heritage tour where I visit the remaining 27 UNESCO World Heritage Sites which I have yet to visit in the country.

Today I find myself south of Frankfurt where I visited the Frontiers of the Roman Empire in Saalburg late yesterday afternoon in a snowstorm. So far I’ve visited 14 of the 28 sites on my list. Today was my busiest day of the trip as I visit 3 sites in a single day. I was able to do this because they were reasonably close together with less than an hour drive between them.

The operative word for the trip so far has been “cold”. Just before I left Berlin last week a cold front came through and dumped snow over most of the country. Temperatures have been unusually cold for most of the country and I’ve had to wear multiple layers of clothes in order to keep warm, as I don’t have a winter coat with me. Thankfully temperatures are starting to go back up again and hopefully the snows will be gone soon.

Revisiting the Wadden Sea was on my agenda

So far I’ve really been enjoying this trip. Having a car makes all the difference in the world. The stress I normally have to deal with when taking trains or planes is gone. There is no way I could have done a schedule this ambitious any other way.

I’m also learning a lot. It is like I’m going on 2 class field trips every single day. The subjects I’m learning about vary greatly, from 20th century industrial systems to Roman architecture to the politics of the Hanseatic League.

Here is a summary of the world heritage sites I’ve visited so far:

  • Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and the Ancient Beech Forests of Germany (Germany/Slovakia/Ukraine)
  • Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar (Germany)
  • Hanseatic City of Lübeck (Germany)
  • Town Hall and Roland on the Marketplace of Bremen (Germany)
  • The Wadden Sea (Netherlands/Germany)
  • Zollverein Coal Mine Industrial Complex in Essen (Germany)
  • Aachen Cathedral (Germany)
  • Upper Middle Rhine Valley (Germany)
  • Roman Monuments, Cathedral of St Peter and Church of Our Lady in Trier (Germany)
  • Völklingen Ironworks (Germany)
  • Frontiers of the Roman Empire (Germany/United Kingdom)
  • Messel Pit Fossil Site (Germany)
  • Abbey and Altenmünster of Lorsch (Germany)
  • Speyer Cathedral (Germany)

I still have 14 more sites to visit and I am looking forward to seeing the remainder. They include gardens, a factory, an opera house, more churches, palaces and medieval towns. I’ll also be visiting Neuschwanstein Castle, which is not a world heritage site, but still pretty cool.

One downside of trips like these is that my days are almost completely full either taking photos or driving. By the time I get to my hotel in the evening I only have limited time to work and edit photos.

I also don’t really have any time to do my laundry. I’m not going to say how long it has been since I last washed my clothes, but you would be shocked. Even worse, I probably wont be able to get around to it until I am back in Berlin.

If you ever get a chance to go on a world heritage road trip like this, I highly recommend it. It is more educational than school and a whole lot of fun.

Monday Travel Update – Half Way Through Germany Edition

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