Wuerzburg - the Romantic Street's other end or beginnin

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Wuerzburg

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It always depends on the point of view what is the start or the end of a road - if you are looking to the mountains, then the Romantic Street in southern Germany starts in Fuessen, we just have visited some days before ( you didn't ? Try! ). But believe me, all people of that wonderful town we will see today will say, Wuerzburg is the beginning of that marvellous Romantic Street.

Now first the main question - where is Wuerzburg? Take a map from Germany, put your finger in the middle to Frankfurt and slip a little bit to east and then to south. Now you are normally in Lower Franconia (if your fingers are not to big or sliding to fast), just between Nuernberg and Frankfurt. A very important highway cross is also there, the motorways A 7 from northern Germany (Kassel - Ulm - Kempten) and the A 3 (Frankfurt - Nuernberg) meet here together. Distance from Frankfurt about one hour drive, from Munich airport I will need with my airportshuttle a little less than two hours. Wuerzburg is also a railroad cross and a lot of busses are stopping there too.

I bet that travellers whole over the world know the river Main connected with the name of Frankfurt airbase. The town of Wuerzburg has been located for almost 3000 years along the shores of the Main river.

The history of this nice town at the Romantic Street started with the founding of a Celtic castle on the Marienberg (Hill of Maria).Later on earls, dukes and the German Cesar Friedrich Barbarossa (named "Redbeard") took this place for residence. The old stones could tell you names like Tilman Riemenschneider (famous wood arts), Balthasar Neumann (great architecture) or Rudolf Virchow (medicine) and Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen ( who do not know x-ray units, that was the guy who discovered this), they all lived and worked in Wuerzburg once.

The old times are gone but not the the memory and stone documentation. Our picture below shows you the barock military castle long time the residence of the prince-bishops from Wuerzburg. They have a 500 years old stone bridge over the river Main, till today fine. This was handycraft, wasn't it?

Old buildings, history, nice views and stories are one reason to visit a town. That's the vacation part. Wuerzburg today is worth the other and necessary part too, for business or / and education. In 1582 there was founded the Julius-Maximilian-University and in our times over 20 000 students are learning there in different branchs. The town also is like a magnet for congresses and exhibitions, space for guests they have enough or do you think, over 4000 beds in the nice and modern accommodations will be to less? But not all times all visitors the citizens of Wuerzburg liked. In 1631 the Swedish army lead by king Gustav Adolf was laying there three years. In my legend part a little further on I will tell you one story of that dark time.

Quick back to the possibilities for vacation. I guess, one day is really to short for sightseeing. For example, there are some different roundtrips (every one nearly a two hours walk) just for looking on the main important points. If you want have some guide tours in the inside, you will need much more time. And believe me, it will be worth it.

Working or walking, the last one as a visitor, makes always hungry and thirsty. You are a lucky one, if you stay there in Lower Franconia. Although they have an important brewery in Wuerzburg this town has a door to paradise. Vine yards all around in the lovely landscape, a lot of small restaurants with dishes home used (like mother will cook, if she is franconian) and naturally, international ones too. Excellent accommodations small and big, the most family size, lots of sportive possibilities and the special flair of Franconia, you will understand why people love Wuerzburg and the Romantic Street, mainly the whole romantic area there.

Before I finish with my used sentences ( you can just jump down here) one old story from the town. If you sometimes visit Wuerzburg you see the town mayors house with a high tower, named the Duke's Eckhardt-Tower. In older times they had a guard up there and people told the following story:

The tower guard from the Duke's Eckhardts-Tower at Wuerzburg

It was to the times of the thirty-years-during war. 1631 the Swedish army had conquered the town and stayed now the third year there. It was cruel for all citizens. Nearly in every house the enemies were living, the officers near the old fish-market area, soldiers everywhere in all houses. On the third annuary day the old town mayor walked all steps up to the tower top where the guard named Joerg lived and watched. This young guy was brave and got the job in reason of his good eyes to look far over the area.

The guard was very astonished to see the old town mayor at him because normally he has to go down and so he was wondering, what the mayor want from him. The old man thought some minutes silent if he could trust that young man, than he started to talk. "Once in the mountains a grain of sand fell down and ripped more and more with him so at the end it was a big fall. The same I want that you do, small in your hand but getting a huge result" . Here he stopped, asking sudden: "Are you loyal to our cesar?" The tower guard said: " Mayor, I am so loyal like the river to his shores or the swallows to my tower".

"Ok," the mayer continued, "than listen to me. The town will give a big ceremony that evening to all our Swedish enemies in case of the annuary. The generals will be served in the monastery over the river, the officers will have their dishes in the town mayors hall and all soldiers will be served in the houses they stay. The vine will be good and very sweet and before the bell rings 22 hours, they will all sleep very deep. But just than, if you had done your normal work and count the ten bell hits by your own hand like usual, the sound of the clock will be a sign. At the gate to Mainz there will wait the army of the cesar, the last bell sound will open that door and all enemies will be killed in that night. So we must go sure, that the bell rings exactly otherwise we failed our freedom".

Joerg was happy and proud about the honest and confident job the town mayor want him to do. There was no doubt that this young guy will do his duty and the town mayer went back downstairs with the hope for freedom. The tower guard himself was looking over the town beneath his work place thinking about the coming. Perhaps he also thought about the orphan girl named Rieke, living in the same tower. She was the child of the last tower guard and the town has allowed her to live there further on. As a thank she always kept an eye on Joerg's living rooms. But in all time, he wanted to speak to her a little longer she was flying away like a shy bird. In the contrary, if he saw her fetching the water at the fountain near the tower, she was staying even till the Swedish horsemen were coming. It made him sad but soon it will have an end.

Sun was gone, Joerg went down the stairs to close the tower as he suddenly heard something strange. So he looked for this curious noise very careful and silent. Then he heard two voices and coming nearer unvisibly he understood the whispered talk.

The young maiden Rieke just said: " Believe me Axel, you all will be lost after the bell had ring ten o'clock. That's the reason I have called you here in otherwise I never will have done that. Fly away, rescue your life!" Then a man asked in broken German from whom she will know. Rieke told that Swedisch soldier, she had listen to the talk between the town mayor and the tower guard. But the Swedish was not really believing her :" I can not believe that, they will be crazy. If you tell me the truth I must warn all my comrades!". The girl begged him again " Let the others, rescue yourself, please!"

The tower guard did not listen longer to that betrayal, he slipped upstairs as quick as possible. Just as he arrived in the clock room the bell started to hit one quarter to ten. Joerg knew now, every minute will count and he put hand on the clock and let the bell sound ten, 15 minutes earlier than in reality. If the Lord will help freedom will come and no betrayal can avoid this.

Next morning all Swedish soldiers were dead and the tower guard the heroe. The town gave him big honours and in memory of his brave and thinkful decision he got the right every evening 15 minutes to ten ringing earlier. This use should be kept over hundred years, people told. But acting like an heroe he lose his love and lived alone till he died although this girl Rieke later wanted him but he didn't. So far the legend of that today existing tower.

In our new century the citizens of Wuerzburg are nice to everybody, even the Swedish can come again without fear for death. Yeah, in september the town has a Swedish cultury festival week - I guess some inhabitants of that town are great-grandsons of some soldiers in the Middle Ages.

Nevertheless we are all humans that's the main important thing. And a second very true old sentence in Latin said: "in vino veritas". Oh you never learned Latin? No problem, that means drinking wine helps seeing and talking the truth - you can try this in the vine week from 26th may till 4th june. The whole town is decorated with vine cottages, you can test over 100 different ones and the original franconian dishes too.

More informations you can get by the Tourist Information or you visit the own homepage of Wuerzburg. Maybe, we will meet us there or shall your personal airportshuttle pick you up at Munich airport for a trip to that town?

Script by J.W.Lohfink, for any mistakes in spell or grammar I apologize as a precaution, corrections, questions or comments please mail to me.

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