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Maurice Greer’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 09 Jul 2009

Location: Cologne/Rhine cruise, Germany

MapToday we went on a Rhine cruise, starting from Boppard, a small medieval town on the Rhine. This town also has some remains of 4th century Roman walls and after a short walk through the town we boarded a K&D cruise ship. We first passed Sterrenberg & Liebenstein castles, known as the “Hostile Brothers” castles, built a short distance from each other. A few kilometres on we saw Maus Castle (Burg Maus) which got its name (mouse) as the next castle was owned by the Katzenelnbogen family. This castle was built in the 1300s, blown up by Napoleon in 1806 and rebuilt, true to its original plans, in 1900. Next we passed the town of St Goar & Rheinfels castle and then a statue of “The Loreley”, where legend tells she is a nymph who combs her long hair at the end of a long spit and is blamed for sailors drowning here. Actually “The Loreley” is the name of a cliff face which is over 450 feet above the narrowest and deepest point of the Rhine with swirling currents. A little further on are reefs called the Seven Maidens. The next town was Oberwesel, a Celtic town from 400 B.C. and next to Schonburg castle. Then on a little island we saw Pfalz castle which was able to block passage along the river until tolls were paid. We ended our cruise at Bacharach, a lovely old town with many half timbered homes and businesses, once prosperous from the wine and wood trade. We stopped at a weinstube to sample some of the local white wine and then headed back to Boppard on “The Goethe”, a paddle steamer. We had dinner in a restaurant in a very quaint building in Boppart and drove back to Cologne.