Whatever this potentially ominous sign means, water is everywhere in Augsburg and it has been systematically managed since the 14th century. In fact, you'd be hard pressed to go anywhere in Augsburg and not encounter the city's ingenious water operating system. There are medieval water towers, fountains, millwheels, hydroelectric power stations...
The powerful Hanseatic League has been mentioned frequently on this blog, and we've covered several Hansa cities: Hamburg, Bremen and Lübeck in Germany; Torun, Gdansk and Krakow in Poland; Tallinn and Riga in the Baltic countries. In neighbouring Sweden, there's Stockholm and enchanting Visby. In Belgium, there's Bruges and Antwerp. Finally, there's lively London and beguiling Bergen. And there are [...]
A donkey, a dog, a cat, a rooster - you're looking at the famous Bremen Town Musicians. This 200-year-old Grimms brothers' fairytale is about four friends, all a bit worse for wear and mistreatment at the hands of abusive owners. Well, nothing for it, only [...]
Christmas marzipan has appeared in the shops up here in the northern European world; a sure sign of the approaching Yule (which is what we call Christmas, heathens that we are). A bit early, in my opinion, it's just October. But what can you do - [...]
See the bridge here? It is one of several bridges in Park Musakowski/Muskauer Park, crossing the River Neisse. Perhaps that name sounds familiar? You may remember the Oder/Neisse line from history lessons in school: at the Potsdam Conference after World War II, on Stalin's insistence, [...]
It's a warm afternoon in June. I'm walking along a narrow path in a park in the town of Dessau. In the state of Saxony-Anhalt, once part of the now defunct country DDR, the German Democratic Republic, better known as East Germany. This is not [...]
Trees! In my search for world heritage, the important places on the planet, those worthy of special protection for the future, I sometimes find myself in somewhat curious situations. This time, I am looking for trees. Beech trees, to be specific. Fagus sylvatica. Of course, [...]