Friday, January 28, 2011

Ruine Wachtenburg; Wachenheim, Germany



*Typed Wedesnday, January 26th.  Posted today due to really shabby internet.*
 
Today we explored our third German castle.  I'm starting to think you can't throw a rock without hitting one.  This one, Ruine Wachtenburg, is the most stereotypically "castle-ish" out of the three we have seen so far.  It sits high above a hill top in Wachenheim (about forty minutes from Mannheim), and is quite a torturous steep climb.  There is a wonderful view on the way up, which somewhat makes up for the long walk.  The castle is surrounded by vineyards, and the path to the top zig-zags through the stairstep shelves of vines.  The higher you climb, the better the view of the town and countryside becomes.  About half way up we met some very friendly ponies who appeared to be camera-trained.


  



Fact:  While I was busy trying to keep from falling over from exhaustion
my super-in-shape husband was RUNNING up the last stretch of the path.
Note that he's still wearing shorts in the freezing weather.  Sigh.
It was freezing today!  By the time we got to the top, a light snow was falling.  On a clear day, the view from Wachtenburg stretches all the way to the Black Forest, but what with the snow and overcast sky we couldn't see much past the village of Wachenheim.  We're planning to revisit in the summer when the weather is a bit more friendly. 





The stairs on the other side weren't enough fun.


He stopped there only because I was screeching about how he would fall to his doom.
It's a long drop on the other side.

The plaque on the wall reads:  "Die Liebe ist die stärkste Kraft im die Kosmos."
Roughly translated, it means:  "Love is the strongest force in the cosmos."







This cool little map showed where popular landmarks could be found in the view
 from the castle.  The bottom hand points to where we are, the top to home. 




Scaffolding makes it possible to climb to the top of the hightest tower.  Kyle went up, but I preferred to keep my feet planted firmly on the ground.  I'm not so much a lover of heights...







Part of the castle grounds now hosts a restaurant: Burgshenke.  As best we could tell, the seating is all outdoors.  It must be lovely in the summer, and it certainly has a great view!



At night, lights illuminate the castle.  It can be seen from long distances, which is actually how we found it.  We spotted it while driving aimlessly Monday, and came back today for a better (daylit) look.

6 comments:

  1. These are fantastic pictures!

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  2. My favorite pic? The pony with the white mane. What a different and lovely combination for a horse.

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  3. Thanks, Holli! :)

    Hookin It: I loved that one too! I've seen pictures of horses with that coloring before, but it was my first time seeing one in person.

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  4. It looks like a great time! That castle is awesome!

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  5. I'm so glad you're getting out and exploring the sights of Germany! My husband and I are planning a trip to Germany next year and I'm already super excited - I've been more times than I can count but this will be my first time as an "adult" and I can't wait.

    Also, how do you get your photos to look like that on your blog? I love the box around them.

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  6. Kattrina: I'm so glad we've been able to explore a little! I hope you and your husband have a good trip! What part of Germany are you planning to visit?

    The photos do that one their own if you update your blog to the new template designer. I had my doubts about using it at first, but it's much simpler and kept my blog looking about the same.

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