Nuremburg Kultur

Trip Start Dec 16, 2007
Trip End Feb 24, 2008

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Friday, December 21, 2007

Another morning in Nuremburg, another breakfast. In contrast to yesterday's chain hotel standard breakfast we went down to the local German chain bakery nearby where we were able to indulge in some of the local pastry specialties. Dad and I particularly enjoyed the "Frankonian" (local region) stollen, which was surprisingly moist, even with the absence of marzipan.

The first activity we had lined up for the day was a visit to the former Nazi Rally Grounds, where there is a museum focusing on Nuremburg's place in the story of the Nazi Party and the Third Reich. Our journey there was made on S Bahn line 2, which was quick and efficient. A nice surprise was the passing of an ICE 3 set and a waiting Austrian Railways electric loco at the head of a freight train at the station where we disembarked. The museum itself was fairly fresh and engaging, with complimentary audio guides providing an English translation of the German text and multimedia throughout the extensive exhibition. As always this chapter of German history is a sad story and I ended up feeling very sorry for the Germans, especially the current generations who have to deal with this emotional legacy. Our visit here lasted for several hours but was curtailed by our growing weariness and desire for a lunch break. Indeed the exhibition's biggest weakness was its length.

After a simple lunch at the museum, which itself is located within the never-fully-completed Congresshalle of the Rally Grounds, we traveled on Tram 9 back toward the Altsadt. Most of the route was within a dedicated, grassed or paved alignment in the middle of the road, allowing the nice 4-car ADtranz tram to travel at a high speed and make good time. Once at the Hauptbahnhof we stayed onboard the tram so that it took us past the walled Altstadt, up the hill to the northern end of the city. From the tram stop we walked into the Koenigburg - the city's original fortress and castle at its highest point. From here we looked out south over the Altstadt, toward our hotel and the station.

From the Koenigburg we descended to the Christmas Market in the Hauptmarkt and onto afternoon tea at another bakery, where we delighted in lebkuchen torte. The rest of the afternoon was spent in and out of shops on the way back to the hotel, with Mum and Dad separating from Charles and I as Mum wanted to buy another scarf (go figure!) while Charles and I were more interested in food and drink specialties. In a strange turn of events both parties returned to the hotel at virtually the same time, although Mum and Dad left to post the first box of goodies back home which turned out to be a long and convoluted adventure for them.

Dinner was had at a pokey little restaurant that was in the Altstadt wall overlooking the train station. The food was interesting but our waiter was rude and weird. Some weird cultural exchange that was...

Tomorrow morning we're hopping over to Mariánské Lázne on some regional trains, transiting through Cheb. I'll hopefully get an update out from there so I'll seeya there!
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