Here are a few photos taken during the first part of our travels in Germany. So many sites to see, and so many beers to sample!!
This photo is of a canal in the Hamburg Warehouse District. In the distance is the Elphie which is a fantastic venue for a a wide variety of musical performances.
Elphie Concert Hall in Hamburg, Germany. We attended a solo guitar performance, which was one of the best musical performance I have every experienced.
Near the Warehouse District is this shell of a bombed out church, which was the first significant memorial to the war years we visited. Hamburg was one of several German cities that were largely destroyed by fire or bombing.
View from the church tower of Hamburg today.
Beautiful fountain in the City Hall plaza.
From Hamburg we took the train to Berlin. Shortly after our arrival, we headed to a nearby memorial to the Berlin Wall. Throughout the city there are memorials where the wall once stood. At this one they kept a section exactly the way it was back in the 60’s. The wall was ten feet high with guard towers located periodically along its route. On the East German side of the wall all buildings within a couple hundred feet of the wall were taken down to prevent escape attempts.
A mural on the side of a building showing the construction of the wall back in 1961.
In another part of Berlin the wall has been turned into a half mile long street art project.
Many of the murals painted on the wall had a theme promoting peace and justice.
I think his mural depicts the mayors of East and West Berlin after the wall was torn down.
Museum Island is a major Berlin attraction. On this small tract of land are several significant museums that house artifacts of human history from around the world. The outside of the museums was almost as impressive as their contents.
Inside the Pergamon Museum is one of the most fantastic things I have ever seen. It is the Ishtar Gate which served as one of the entrances to the inner city of Babylon. When archaeologists discovered the bricks that mad up the gate, they were just a pile of rubble broken into fragments. These fragments were subsequently pieced back together to recreate many of the bricks that formed the original structure. If you look closely at this photo, you can see that many of the bricks were pieced together this way. The other unbroken brisks were recreated based upon the designs.
Another museum on the island housed a collection of magnificent statues.
This is one of the few synagogues that survived the war. Our understanding is that the Mayor liked the building and ordered it not be left alone, unlike most other synagogues which were destroyed.
Another church that was mostly destroyed during the war years.
Throughout Germany there are numerous sidewalk cafes that serve a variety of beers from the surrounding area. This cafe was a bit unique in that all of the chairs were lined up so that every chair pointed toward the street allowing their patrons to drink beer while people watching. We stopped for a beer and some people watching too.
For those old enough to remember this is a photo of Checkpoint Charlie (or a recreation of it). Somewhat ironic that a McDonald’s has strategically located a restaurant nearby.
This Wall Memorial was especially impressive. At one end were displays describing the rise of the Nazi Party, and at the other end were photos showing building and destruction of the wall. This timeline give a very clear description of how hatred and racism leads to awful outcomes. The museum next to this memorial was also excellent.
This is a the front of the Russian Embassy, which was by far the most grandiose of the embassies we saw in Berlin.
Across the street from the Russian Embassy was this protest sign.
True to the hype, the beers of Germany are some of the best I have every had. Here, Alena couldn’t get enough of this local brew.
A boy and his beer.
One of the best i have ever tasted. I rated it A++.
The Brandenburg Gate photographed from the former East German side.
A memorial built by the USSR to recognize the soldiers who died during the WWII battle for Berlin.
Photo take from the Victory Monument looking down the avenue toward the Brandenburg Gate and the Berlin radio/TV tower.
Sanssouci Palace in Potsdam was the summer home of Frederick the great. Potsdam is also known for the agreement which defined the military occupation of Germany after the war. A bridge just outside of town was the place where the East and West exchanged spies during the Cold War.
Just a modest garden home in Potsdam.
One of the things I most wanted to do while we were in Germany was to attend the MotoGP races held each year at the Sachsenring course near Chemnitz, Germany. This was my first MotoGP, and it even exciting than I thought it would be.
Nurnberg was an especially nice city with lots of things to see and do. Here Alena is in the main plaza of the old city in front of an Catholic Church that is hundreds of years old.
Memorial to Human Rights, each of which was etched on the pillars in a unique language. Hopi was used create the inscription on pillar 25.
The history of the harpsichord to the modern piano in the German National Museum.
Years ago local brewers used the caverns under the Old City in Nuremberg to brew their beers. One of these breweries is still using them for beer brandy production.
Beer brandy aging in the caverns.
Residence Museum in Munich has a extraordinary collection of treasures.
One of the many halls which were originally the home to the royal family.
Germans love play a game called petanque, In this area of a city park in Munich there were at least 100 people playing petanque.