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Sunday, April 24, 2011

Burg Eltz

Burg Eltz

Yesterday, we drove about an hour and a half to visit a 12th century castle called Burg Eltz.   Here is a bit of history for you. It is in the hills above the Moselle river( a tributary to the Rhine) near the town of Koblenz, Germany.  It is one of the only castles in Germany which is furnished with many of the furniture pieces you would have seen 500 years ago.  It has 80 rooms, 40 fireplaces and 20 toilets!!! Yes, even that long ago there were toilets in this castle!!!( They would even flush sometimes with rainwater which collected on the roof of the castle)  It is actually owned by the original family line 33 generations later!!!  It was home to three lines of the Eltz family and there were three separate living spaces with the families sharing the courtyard area and the surrounding grounds.  They also could use the fortifications of the castle in case of attack.  But, this castle never really saw any battles.  The Eltz family was able to use their political and social connections to avoid major conflict on the castle.    I have to say, that all that history is wonderful, but actually going inside and seeing the castle furnished and the bed from the 1500's and a fireplace which has been used literally for centuries is amazing!:)  Not to mention the beautiful scenery around the is truly breath taking. (  The picture above shows the castle.  Right now they are doing some repairs to the outside of it.)
Elzbach River  surrunds the castle.  It feeds into the Moselle River.
Jeremy and me waiting for the shuttle to take us back up the hill.:)
I wish I could have taken pictures for you of the inside of the castle.  It was amazing!  But, since it is still owned by the original family, and they have many of their one of a kind pieces inside, we weren't able to take any pictures inside the castle.  But, if you ever get a chance to see definitely should take the chance!:)
Okay, now my pictures got a little messed up and out of order.  So, I'll try to narrate through them for you.:)

picture of another castle on our way back to Bacharach
People were hang gliding along the Rhine River. It was a gorgeous day!
Another castle on our way back to Bacharach
We took a ferry boat back over the Rhine to Bacharach....the kids loved it!!!
Guy took me wine tasting in Bacharach after the kids napped.:)

Guy knows me too well.  he decided to take me wine tasting at a small winery in Bacharach.  it was so much fun to taste all the different wines made right here.:)  What do you do with your kids when you and your husband are wine tasting???
Keep them busy with their drawing, of course!!:)

After wine tasting ( and buying a few bottles) we went to have dinner at one of the German restaurants in town.  The kids got frankfurters, I got cured ham with eggs, and Guy got the award for the most unusual dinner selection...wild boar aspic!!!  My grandma ( who made tomato aspic) would have been very proud of him.:)  He said it wasn't really too bad...but it may have been the wine carousel we shared of 15 different wines that was talking.:)

More pictures from the day:
view of the countryside
picture of forest
more forest:)
beautiful field of yellow flowers
Guy pulled over so I could get a better picture of the fields.  We both agree, these fields of yellow are beautiful.)

Another castle on our way to Burg Eltz
road sign
We hiked a long way from where we could park our car through the forest to get to Burg Eltz.  The kids did really well.  I have to admit, it was a long walk and mostly downhill...but it was long.:) 

Guy and kids in front of Burg Eltz

castle courtyard

We had a great Saturday exploring more of Germany thanks to my wonderful tour guide and trip planner, Guy.:)  Our visit to Germany has been wonderful and the kids have really enjoyed all the parks and playgrounds and food.  It will be hard to say good bye to Germany and head back to Lagos on Monday.  But, we are so thankful we have the opportunity to come and see this great country!:)

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