Friday, May 10, 2013

Viking's Grand European River Cruise: Bamberg, Germany

Viking River Cruise, Day 7:  Bamberg, Germany (Facebook collage)
(click any collage to enlarge)

After such a HUGE day before, visiting both Würzburg and Rothenburg, we were so happy to have a morning on the boat, sailing through the 106-mile Main-Danube Canal.  Nice and easy.

This man-made canal comprises 16 locks, completed and opened in 1992,
creating a continuous waterway from the North Sea to the Black Sea.
Think of it as building a staircase up and over the mountain, which you can see here.
At it's highest point, 175 m/574 ft, we were on top of the world.
One lock alone lifted us 25 m/82 ft. in one swell foop!

After lunch our ship docked in Hassfurt long enough for us to disembark,
and then continued on its way to Bamberg....

...while we walked through Hassfurt to catch our buses to Bamberg, 30 km away.

 We had the chance to pass the Ritterkapelle (Knight's Chapel or Mary's Chapel), from 1390.
(The 2 images with the 'A' are from Astrid.)

We even had the time to briefly pop inside...while the others were moseying along.
You know us...grab the opportunity as it comes!
All of that before arriving 30 km. later in Bamberg, our excursion for the day!

See Neptune and the street market?  That was our starting and finishing point.
It always helps to have a landmark to help you sort things out...with impressions along the way.

Our tour of the afternoon, before free time, was the Bamberg Cathedral, from 1237.

See the horse and rider (the Bamberger Reiter)?  No one knows who he is!

But they do know that's the tomb of Emperor Henry II and Empress Cunigunde (bottom left).

A short walk from the cathedral took us to this overlook of the city below.
That's the Michaelsberg Abbey (top right) from 1015.  I want to go see it!
And we wondered if that's a water tower (middle left)???

At this point, we were free to roam,
so we headed back down to the river Regnitz, close to its confluence with the river Main.

And there in the middle of the river is the Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall), from 1387,
accessible by 2 bridges, both of which we walked.

 How can you not get excited about that!
(Oh, and that's Astrid's pic of the bottom-left crucifix on one of the bridges!)

Have you noticed how many cities are now picking up on the love padlocks?
Nothing quite like what we saw in Cologne, but they all have to start somewhere, right!

Now, how about this?  Do you think IT might take off?  Hmmmm.

Did I mention it was freezing cold outside, even with the sun shining!
Of course, you can never go wrong warming up with a cold beer, especially in Germany.
(Maybe that's why the bike was wrapped in wool?)

You just have to bundle up, of course.
There's no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothes!

 Did I find any niches, you ask?

Oh, yes, of course!

And gable stones, even if but a handful.

By the time we got back to the main square and Neptune (remember?),
and while waiting for our boat to arrive from Hassfurt,
we had the chance to visit the St. Martin church across from the Green Market, from 1693.

We didn't spend long inside but even a peek is sometimes enough.
These places really are like museums to me.  They rarely stir my spiritual soul, sad to say.
But I always want to check them out.

My soul was stirred by the plaques midst the cobblestones of deported Jews during the Great War.
Impressions.  Impressions.  Impressions.

Another great city.  Another great day!


  1. I believe you must be getting super quick and good at spotting details on these excursions. You know what you like, and you add to your collections. It's incredible to see so much in each of these places. We only have to look!

    I love the space in that cathedral sanctuary.

    1. You have said it perfectly, Ruth! We DO know what we're looking for and once we see it, BINGO. Everything else is pure gravy. :) Thank you.

  2. there was a lot of sightseeing opportunities on this cruise. wow!

    the rathaus mural is incredible. the architecture so beautiful. i am so jealous. :)

    1. It really was a trip of a lifetime, Maria, in more ways than you can see! And yes, that rathaus was bigger than life in all its incredible glory. Unbelievable!

  3. Lovely adventures as always. My favs were the bikes! :)

    1. Thanks, Jen. Of course you'd like the bikes. :)

  4. All completely overwhelming!
    And BTW, that process of wrapping things in wool is called yarnbombing.

    1. Yarnbombing? So, I've just learned a new word! HA! Thanks, Sham. Leave it to you to know that. :) It all IS a bit overwhelming, isn't it!

  5. Steps up a mountain, made of water. Truly a marvel! The details of Mary's Chapel (?) amaze me. I imagine you in a guided tour the LAST one and always "catching" up with the group because of the photo ops you see. (that is usually me too :) 1237!! To think a building has survived that long and still looks good. We Americans are so silly - we think a house is old if it is over what? 50 years old? ha.

    It amazes me how so many cities have huge grand cathedrals ... and the buildings are right on the water! I would love to see what the person was wearing that owned the "crocheted" bike!

    I agree - Awe inspiring those grand places are. But too much so for me to settle in, I guess.

    1. What breaks my heart right now, Margaret, is knowing that many of these places along the river right now are being flooded. But I'm sure they've had to deal with it before and will deal with it again. Still, I don't want to think about all the damage. (sigh)