Rostock has been referred to as the "Pearl of Northern Germany". When the cruise ships disembark from their Baltic Sea Tour at Warnemunde, the passengers are encouraged to come to Rostock and see the various sites: St. Marienkirche (kirche means church in German) with the 13th century clock and the apostles that go around Jesus at the count of 12 as well as Petrikirche which is even older and you can go up in the tower and see the whole town.
The clock at St. Marienkirche
See the apostles going around at the top? They all get Christ's blessing except for Judas:)
It is interesting as one goes through all of these old churches that many of the nobility
I just cannot get enough of these beautiful stained glass windows!!
Not only is there a lot here in Rostock, but just within an hour or two there are many wonderful sites to see. From Mid August to the end and then the first week of October we had visitors from America and it was fun to show them all the enchanting places, so I thought it was time to share some of them with you.
Wismar is a nearby coastal village that is a World Heritage site that means it has been declared to be a culturally important site and should be preserved for the world to see.
Just one of the three beautiful churches here
Gentz found this poignant picture of a German soldier he was particularly moved by. He looked into his eyes and felt sorrow as he realized that this young man was probably going to his death. On his belt buckle it says: "Gott mit uns". That means God with us. He very well may have thought that God was with him and perhaps he was. Not all German soldiers were true Nazis. They were simply soldiers, doing their duty to their country, and we hope that indeed God was with them in their dying hour. Isn't that what we would wish for everyone?
My friend Becky and I in front of another old church that isn't open for touring now.
There was a downtown street Swedish Festival the day we were there.Sweden ruled Northern Germany for several hundred years it seems. It was great fun with people strolling, bands playing and vendors selling their wares.
From Wismar, you can go just 30 minutes to Schwerin, the Capital of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, the state in which we are located. There is the wonderful castle which is the second most visited castle next to Neuschwanstein in Southern Germany. I'm sure you have heard of it and seen pictures as Walt Disney designed the Disney Castle after it, but this one, you have probably never heard of. It was built in the 15th Century and has been rebuilt and added on to so it is much older than the one in Southern Germany. My sister Julie who has been to Neuschwanstein loved Schwerin and felt it was somehow more impressive. That's what we like to hear:))
The king's room in the castle. Above are all of the town coats of arms from the surrounding areas that make up the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.
On the Castle grounds, an artist well known in Europe places these frames in front of natural settings and then you can stand in them and the natural scene behind you looks just like a real painting. True natural art! We were amazed at how much it looked like a painted landscape!
Let's go to Lübeck next about 11/2 hours from Rostock. It has a wonderful medieval downtown section with of course, more amazing churches and also twin gates that once stood at the very outskirts of this city to protect it against marauders.
Gentz has this terrible (sweet) habit of kissing me in front of many of the sites we visit, so I thought I would just share one with you:))
Lubeck is the Marzipan Capital of the world for those of you who like that almond favored candy. We found a great store where Julie bought some souvenirs. They even had a Twin gate made out of Marzipan!
Lübeck platz (center) and Rathaus (City Hall)
This was a cool old street we happened upon as we were traveling to the churches. Such old buildings and streets. Even a Puppet Museum! Germans love museums!! I wish it had been opened but the day we were there happened to be Tag Der Einigkeit (Day of Unity). It is the day that Germany was officially reunified with East and West together once again. No stores or museums were open.
That is about it for Lubeck as we ended up in quite the little, no big rainstorm and had to run for our lives to the car!! It was a terrific time however and we enjoyed touring this wonderful old city. I still want to share Warnemunde and especially Bad Doberan (my favorite) with you but will do so in another blog. Thanks so much for coming along with us on this little trip and we hope that you will be as astonished as we all have been with the beauty and the history here. Rostock area is a well kept secret, but if you ever get to Germany, make sure you travel North to the "Pearl of Northern Germany"! We are so grateful to be here for a time! Tchüss!