Visit a burg and break the ice

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - Escape - - FRONT PAGE -

sur­viv­ing bridges. I took a stroll across the 16 stone arch­ways and ad­mired the view back to­wards the Old City, dom­i­nated by the soar­ing spires of the me­dieval cathe­dral.

Reach­ing heights of more than 100m, the spires of the Re­gens­burg Cathe­dral tower over this quaint vil­lage with cob­ble­stoned roads. One of the finest ex­am­ples of true Gothic ar­chi­tec­ture, the cathe­dral show­cases in­tri­cate sculp­ture and stunning stained­glass win­dows.

Later that day I set off on a bike ride along the pic­turesque pathways by the river. Af­ter an hour me­an­der­ing along the tree-lined trail, pass­ing through tiny vil­lages, a vast struc­ture ap­peared. Stand­ing high on a hill was the Parthenon – a replica of the Greek one con­structed in 1830 as a Ger­man Hall of Fame.

I thought it looked out of place in the lush green Ger­manic coun­try­side where it houses plaques, deities and busts. It was only af­ter climb­ing the 358 steps to the top that I truly ap­pre­ci­ated its in­ten­tion, the panoramic view of the sur­round­ing land­scape was noth­ing short of spec­tac­u­lar. Em­peror Henry III first built a fortress here in 1056, en­cour­ag­ing the growth of the town­ship be­low the im­pos­ing cas­tle walls. Hitler was also at­tracted to the area. He held his in­fa­mous rally here, which even­tu­ally led to the heavy bomb­ing of the town by the Al­lies.

There is, how­ever, more than 4km of orig­i­nal city wall still stand­ing and a re­mark­able job has been done of restor­ing the town to its for­mer glory.

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