This is what I see on my way, some of it in my way (by the way).
Luxemburgplatz: There is a distinct neighbourhood surrounding this little downtown square, and since I do not know it well, I enjoyed walking around there, making pictures. While this post shows what can happen when I take a camera, I am not quite sure if pictures like these are what Jo has in mind for her Monday Walks. But I think that although they show nothing but details, they convey that particular neighbourhood’s atmosphere.
All the stone and glass and brass come to my inner eye when I think of Kurhaus, where last Monday’s walk ended. So I see this as a sort of sequel to last week’s contribution to Jo’s Monday Walks: I never quite succeeded in picturing this feeling of transition into a space that feels old and otherworldly in a way (where you would not be surprised to encounter Mr. Dostoevsky). These pictures are getting very close now.
Upon taking a walk, visitors and Wiesbadeners alike will not really get around Kurhaus, the grand building that houses concert halls, a restaurant, and a casino famous for players like Fyodor Dostoevsky – his novel The Gambler is said to be based on the author’s own experience in Wiesbaden. The building seems to be the city’s (romantic?) heart.
If so, the nearby market place may the be the lungs… Which is where we departed for today’s walk, visually sniffing like a happy dog at some of the things along the way. We have had a look at the former palace, walked along the steps of the ‘new’ city hall, and seen a bit of its ornaments (above).
Turning around, we cannot miss Marktirche (‘Market Church’), a spectacular orange brick building that has already been photographed a million times. I think it is considered Wiesbaden’s capital church, and as history has it, it is protestant. We rush along its walls towards the doors one of the city’s finest cinemas, Caligari (bottom) where a beautiful Art Deco interior is still intact. However, we will stay outside today – or we’ll never arrive at Kurhaus!
Turning left and then right again, one of the city’s nicer arcades takes us to Wilhelmstraße, dominated here by the Theatre of the State (Hessisches Staatstheater). We sneak past the back side, taking in the closed faded curtains, and finally find ourselves in front of the Kurhaus’ revolving doors which I reserve for next Monday’s post: It will not be a long walk, but I consider it worth while, so that will be part of Jo’s Monday Walks (hoping that’s fine by our hostess).
The river Rhine: Wine, castles, romanticism. And aren’t those castles intriguing? Well they are as long as they are medieval… On the Ehrenbreitstein rock, just above the city of Koblenz and Deutsches Eck, where the Moselle meets the Rhine, somebody called Ehrenbrecht or Ehrenbert built a castle near the end of the 10th century. For strategic reasons they kept adding to it, fortifying it until the 19th century, when the buildings were given today’s classicist look. Thus we are now facing a Prussian fortress quite lacking in romanticism despite its location.
The battlements were really not that exciting when I visited with Grandfather as a child, nothing much there but a youth hostel, it seemed.
In 2011 the premises opened for Bundesgartenschau though (a garden exhibition that moves from town to town and gives our cities an incentive to become greener), and it now sports a couple of gardens and museums well worth a visit. However, in some places you can still breathe its drab history as a military installment.
A visit can take a couple of hours – and we still missed on of the outer forts and an art installation – so I consider this a walk: not a Monday Walk but this year’s Good Friday walk.
Restless Jo takes us to Nottingham Castle on her Monday walk today – enjoy the views! – and I take you to my favourite haunt again. Still misty…