Koblenz

Koblenz

Koblenz
The  Rhine River from Cologne to Passau
Our cruise took us up the Rhine River and its towns, castles, churches and vineyards. At Koblenz where the Moselle River empties into it, stands Koblenz and the restored Marksburg Castle.  Presented first are the photos taken on the Rhine and then in a separate section our visit to Marksburg Castle.  Every turn in the river presented a new town, castle or vineyard.  Needless to say, a lot of photos were taken. 
In some cases you will see a photo taken at a wide angle and then subsequent photos taken with a higher zoom. This provides a sense of the overall scene as well s details of the subject.  I hope you enjoy the presentation. Where possible I have identified the castle or town.
If I have miss-identified a town or castle, please let me know.

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I believe this is Bremm.  Home of Europe’s steepest vineyards.

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 Sooneck castle

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This fortress was used to give early warning of an enemy approaching on the river. Note the steep vineyards in the slopes below. Tending the vines and picking the grapes was no easy chore.

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Catholic and protestant churches share the same valley.

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Stahleck Castle. Many of the castle along the Rhine are occupied.
Note the brightly colored patio umbrellas. Can you buy one?  Of course.  How Much?
If you have to ask, you probably cannot afford it. A web search runs in the 10-20 million dollar range.

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Pfalz Castle at Kaub  This castle is unusual as it is at river level rather than on a hill overlooking the river

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A castle? probably not but still a beautiful home overlooking the Rhine.

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Shönburg castle – Oberwesel

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 A couple of the  many watch towers along the river.

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Views of the vineyards along the Rhine

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More steep vineyards. Note that most rows of vines are oriented vertical but some horizontal.  Possibly for different sun exposure?

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Even the railroad tunnel entrances are castle façade motif.   The watch tower was most likely used during the war to prevent sabotage of the tunnel.

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RV’ing and camping are extremely popular in Europe; however you do not see the giant motorhomes we have in the US.  Fuel is way too expensive.

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The Lorelei cliff. Here the river narrows to 350 feet. Not a lot when you are trying to pilot a longboat around it. To make matters worse it has treacherous currents and underground rocks. The Lorelei is a beautiful maiden  who allegedly sat on the rocks, combing her long hair and singing.; luring unsuspecting sailors onto the rocks. The bronze was installed in 1983.  Note the difference in the German spelling.

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For a short video of the Rhine at Lorelei Cliff click here. The boat is moving very slowly through this torturous section.

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The well known Katz (Cat) Castle.

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St Goarshausen – On the river below the Cat astle

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Some examples of Bavarian exposed beam homes. 

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Stolenfels Castle at Koblenz

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  Rheinfels Castle at St. Goar

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If you have a Katz (Cat) Castle, obviously you have to have a Maus (Mouse) Castle.  This is it!  The Maus Castle. Hay, I didn’t name them!

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I was unable to find the name of this castle.   It may be different views of the Maus Castle. Help anyone?

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More churches along the way.

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 We saw many swans along the river.

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Kaiser Wilhelm I  statue at the juncture of the Moselle and the Rhine.

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This gondola cable car provided transportation across the Rhine in Koblenz.  It appeared to be used for regular transportation rather than a tourist attraction.  Look at the right side of the photo and you can see an old road going up the side of the hill.  The architecture seems to date back to Roman times.

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Former prussian gouvernment building of the Rhine Province in Koblenz.  Prussia has a special meaning for the Skunk as his Grandmother and Grandfather immigrated (legally)in the 1800’s to the US from here

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Okay, revolving restaurant? Space Needle? No, this is what TV transmission towers look like in Europe.

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So what are these giant smoke stacks doing sitting on top of this hill with nothing around them?

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They are vents for the industrial complex located to the right of this photo.  If the pollutants were vented into the valley, it would choke every living thing  there so they are piped up to the top of the hill and out vented there.  Europe is pretty tough on environmental pollutants so I doubt if the outflow is very toxic, but if it were vented into the valley it would stay there.  This way it can disperse over a large area, hopefully without causing any harm.

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