In September 2008 we did a circular road trip around Europe starting in Frankfurt, Germany and travelling through Germany, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic and finally back to Frankfurt Germany.
After a day in Frankfurt we started our road trip driving from Frankfurt in Germany to Basel in Switzerland. Heading south from Frankfurt our first stop was the small town of Heidelberg where we took a walk around the small town.
Heidelberg is a town on the Neckar River in southwestern Germany. It’s known for venerable Heidelberg University, founded in the 14th century. Gothic Heiliggeistkirche church towers over the cafe-lined Marktplatz, a town square in the Altstadt (Old Town). The red-sandstone ruins of Heidelberg Castle, a noted example of Renaissance architecture, stand on Königstuhl hill.
It was beautiful down by the River Neckar where we saw a number of cruise ships and people out boating.
Frieburg im Breisgau, Germany
Next stop was Freiburg im Breisgau, a vibrant university city in southwest Germany’s Black Forest, and is known for its temperate climate and reconstructed medieval old town, crisscrossed by picturesque brooks (bächle). In the surrounding highlands, hiking destination Schlossberg hill is linked to Freiburg by a funicular. With a dramatic 116m spire, the Gothic cathedral Freiburg Minster towers over the central square Münsterplatz.
The grand cathedral in the middle of town, the Freiburger Münster, was beautiful and well worth the visit.
We drove further east from Freiburg into the Black Forest and visited the small town of Furtwangen where there was an interesting clock museum.
Furtwangen im Schwarzwald is a small city located in the Black Forest region of south western Germany. It belongs to the district of Schwarzwald-Baar along with the two more important cities of Villingen and Schwenningen.
At one time Furtwangen was a major producer of clocks that were made and sold all over the world. While many different kinds of clocks were produced in Furtwangen, Furtwangen was unique for the production of musical clocks from the factory of Emilian Wehrle.
Emilian Wehrle (1832–1896) made musical clocks in the Furtwangen-Schönenbach area from about 1857 until his death in 1896. These musical clocks included the Trumpeter clock, Flute clock, Singing Bird Clock, and Rooster Clock. These clocks call the hour with the sound of the trumpet, flute, song bird and rooster respectively.
These clocks were the highest quality and were very expensive at the time. Because of this few were produced, and even fewer survived. Today collectors are after these musical pieces, and they continue to be sold at record prices.
This industry was very important in previous centuries, but with the appearance of the quartz watch this branch of the economy is now almost gone.
From Furtwangen we then returned to the main highway south and drove to Basel in Switzerland where we would spend the night.
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