Würzburg

At Würzburg we reached  about half of the Main Biking Track. With a visit to Würzburg we will end our trip.

Old Main Bridge Würzburg

Old Main Bridge Würzburg

Old Main Bridge Würzburg

Old Main Bridge Würzburg

Back and forth with our bikes we discover several nice sights:

Adam and Eve Fountain Würzburg

Adam and Eve Fountain Würzburg

Adam and Eve Fountain Würzburg

Adam and Eve Fountain Würzburg

"Zum Stachel" Würzburg

“Zum Stachel” Würzburg

"Zum Stachel" Würzburg

“Zum Stachel” Würzburg

Atrium "zum Stachel" Würzburg

Atrium “zum Stachel” Würzburg

Falkenhaus Würzburg

Falkenhaus Würzburg

Falkenhaus Würzburg

Falkenhaus Würzburg

Marienkapelle Würzburg

Marienkapelle Würzburg

Alter Kran Würzburg

Alter Kran Würzburg

The Residence we keep for a later visit.

Residence Würzburg

Residence Würzburg

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You are very welcome to join again when we do the other half!

 

The triangle of the river Main

June 14th We trundle along the river looking for a new campsite. We like it in Marktbreit, a new side near the water with all facilities even free WLAN! Marktbreit is nice city located at the southern tip of the Main triangle. _DSC8097_new The emblem of the city is a knight who defeats a lindworm. _DSC8098_new _DSC8099_new Either he wasn’t successful or the creature has descendants – there still is another one! _DSC8096_new The triangle of the Main is the warmest area in Franconia and also very dry. This climate is very good for growing wine. _DSC8106_new We bike to the next village called Ochsenfurt where we have lunch and try some wine. But because it is so hot and humid we prefer a spritzer – and even that is enough! _DSC8107_new _DSC8108_new The town hall of Ochsenfurt has a very special clock. It is known even since 1496 that this clock shows more than just the time. Next to the hours this clock shows the moon phases and moon days. During the centuries the clock and as well the figure of the death has been repaired several times. I couldn’t find out the meaning of the figure. _DSC8117_new _DSC8114_new On our way back we meet a family of swans, a pair of rusty horses and a lonely heron. _DSC8121_new _DSC8126_new _DSC8130_new

From Beer to Wine Country

June 13th

The next village we choose is Dettelbach am Main. The small village also has an impressive town hall.

Town Hall of Dettelbach

Town Hall of Dettelbach

Sun Dial at the Town Hall of Dettelbach

Sun Dial at the Town Hall of Dettelbach

The campsite is right at the bank of the river.

Campsite at the River Main

Campsite at the River Main

On the map, the station is outside but not very far. What you can’t see on our map the road goes permanently uphill. It is quite stressy and it takes longer than we thought. From our preferred train to Schweinfurt we can only see the backlights. But we are flexible and change our destination downstream to Kitzingen. But the bike track and signs are very bad. Once we almost ended up at the autobahn!

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We are very exhausted when we eventually reach again the river. We bike back to Dettelbach.

Even we are in wine country now the restaurants outside are still called „Biergarten“. The preferred drink changes from „Kellerbier“ to „Weinschorle“ (spritzer).

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After a rest, I bike upstream to Münsterschwarzach where a gigantic abbey sits above the tiny village.

Abbey Münsterschwarzach

Abbey Münsterschwarzach

Since I am on the other side of the river now I decide to bike to the tiny ferry right across our campsite. Unfortunately, it is Saturday and the service stops earlier. This means I have to bike all the way back – altogether this means 52km.

Main Ferry

Main Ferry

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From Bamberg to Schweinfurt

June 12th

Schweinfurt has three stations. One we visited yesterday, the ticket automat at the next one is useless and not only because the sun is reflecting the display. The main station is far outside the city, ok, we have our bikes. Here we finally get our ticket to Bamberg. Unfortunately, we have to carry our bikes downstairs and upstairs to the departure platform. In Bamberg we have a nice capuccino that compensates a lot.

The cathedral of Bamberg greets from above.

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Bamberg’s  town hall sits in the middle of the river Regnitz. The story goes the bishop of Bamberg wouldn’t allow the citizens to build their town hall. That’s why they drove piles in the river and created an artificial island where they could erect the building.

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The citizens of Bamberg call the former fishermen settlement „Klein Venedig“ (Little Venice).

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Bamberg is not situated at the river Main but on the river Regnitz. Some kilometers after Bamberg the Regnitz flows into the Main.

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Here also starts the Main-Donau-Kanal which connect the river Main with the river Donau. It was planned as a busy waterway, but we don’t see many ships.

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The Main has dug its bed between the Hassberge and the Steigerwald and our bike track follows the water.

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We have lunch in the nicest beer garden of Hassfurt.

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We are happy when we reached Schweinfurt after 72 km, our estimation for today was a bit wrong.

Schweinfurt

June 11th

Since we don’t get a parking near the station in Bamberg we keep going to Schweinfurt. This idea wasn’t bad because it starts to rain and doesn’t seem to stop. Between two passing showers, we try to find the station. Not easy and not easy to buy tickets. Perhaps it is easier on the other stations – Schweinfurt has three! We will see tomorrow. The large market place is dominated by the town hall and its shot tower. A shot tower is a tower designed for the production of shot balls by the freefall of molten lead, which is then caught in a water basin. The shot is used for projectiles in firearms. Today it is a nice eye catcher for Schweinfurt._DSC8017_new

On the other side of the market square, there is a Brauhaus usually known for good food. Even no one is in the restaurant all the good places are reserved. No thank you, not with us. Next to our campsite is the Turkish Sports Club, here we enjoy a delicious Turkish dinner.

Through Frankonia

June 10th

By train we go from Bad Staffelstein back to Burgkunstadt and by bike back through the Main valley.

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On the right or left side of the river, passing blooming fields and going through Franconian villages.

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The baroque church of pilgrimage „Vierzehnheiligen“ greets us from above for the last of 30 kilometers.

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South of Bamberg is the country of the beer cellars. Before the modern technical cooling systems, most of the breweries had large beer cellars which were filled in winter with ice blocks cut out of the frozen nearby lakes. Therefore, the temperature in the cellars was changeless up to late summer and the storage life of the beer could be extended.

„To go on the cellar“ is a popular activity during the summer month in Frankonia. Between and below trees delicious fresh beer and Franconian specialities are served.

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A very special cellar is here on the Kreuzberg. The brewer and host brews his beer right here.

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How do you like this beer menu? Greg, this is specially for you!

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Our kids married here a few years ago in the small chapel. Tonight we meet them here.

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The red beverage in front is also a beer only available during cherry harvest. I like it!

Half timbered houses and spa town

June 9th

The rain has stopped. Today we will bike. We park the camper in Weismain and bike to Burgkunstadt.

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Everywhere you can see storage and industrial buildings  of a mail order company known throughout Germany. The small city itself has a formidable town hall and a few nice  half-timbered houses, but that’s all – ok, a sculpture of a billy goat and a maypole.

It is quite chilly – 13°! We head back to Weismain. This village is known for its „Weismainer Püls“, yes, that’s correct, the name of the brewery is „Püls“ and they produce a „Pils“!

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We don’t like the campsite and drive on to Bad Staffelstein, famous for its thermal spa Ober Main Therme. Here is the strongest and warmest (52°) thermic spring of Bavaria. In the spa garden are two graduation towers. The down trickling sole enriches the air in the vicinity of the graduation tower having a similar effect than sea water.

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1492 the famous mathematician Adam Riese was born in Bad Staffelstein.

Several beautiful half-timbered houses dominate the city, the most beautiful one is the gorgeous town hall.

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The Secret Capital of Beer

June 8th

The ugly black clouds above us keep us from biking. The bike track peeps out in the forest along the river next to the road. Shame, shame! A short stop in Bad Berneck, the next village is Neuenmarkt. Here is the German Steam Engine Museum. Of course, it is Monday and all museums are closed. But we can catch a glimpse through the fence.

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Welcome in the secret capital of beer! A giant picture greets the visitors of Kulmbach.

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The sky is totally black by now and we do not envy the bikers. It is not far to the city from our campsite and we have umbrellas. Here the River Main is already a bit wider, hopefully, it doesn’t rain as much as 1673!

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The beer gardens are deserted and even the pigeons stay in their house.

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We manage to find a restaurant with Franconian beer and Franconian food like „Blaue Zipfel“, these are cooked sausages in a vinegar brew. I know it sounds disgusting… but it is delicious.

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Kulmbach has a beautiful town hall and I am sure many other nice places but the continuous rain makes us go back to our camper as fast as possible.

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For the evening, Rainer finds a brewery not far from the campsite just on the other side of the river – actually here it is still a creek. The road and the beer garden look deserted.

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But inside it is boiling! We just manage to get a seat. More and more people are coming, the blank scrubbed tables are occupied. The serving girls are very busy, but no one has to wait long for beer and food.

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The beer of the month is „kalt gehopftes Pils“. That goes perfect with the roast with wild mushrooms for Rainer and I go for a filled onion with beer sauce. All is very tasty!

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The Source of the River Main

June 7th

Rainer’s bike is working again, it wasn’t an easy project!

We want to bike along the River Main, starting at the source – that’s our plan.

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The source of the White Main is at the Ochsenkopf (1024m) in the Fichtelgebirge at an altitude of 887m. We drive to Bischofsgrün because here is a cable car to the Ochsenkopf. It is possible to take your bikes up – but only from the south side, we are on the north side of course. We go up anyway without our bikes, I will walk back to Bischofsgrün passing the source. It was a good thing not to take the bikes the track down is more for mountain bikes.

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To find the track is not easy. There are plenty of signs – even the one to the source – but they get less and less and weathered and eventually disappear. Luckily there are hardly any cross-ways and I find my way down.

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The Main starts as a tiny trickle from the source packed in granite by a margrave in 1717 who also let cut the emblem of the Hohenzollern family into the granite.

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Alkmaar – without cheese

May 16th

The temperature has dropped, it is quite cool! But we don’t care too much!

Alkmaar is known for its cheese market, but this event happens only on Fridays and today is Saturday. But there is still a lot to see. The tourist office offers a brochure with a round walk and many infos. For sure I would not walk this but with the bike it is ok.

A weigh house is a public building at or within where goods, and the like, are weighed. This particular one used to be a hospital before the city got the right to weigh the goods in 1582. In 200 years the place in front has been extended 8 times (!!!) to  create more space for the successful cheese market._DSC7593_new

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During the Spanish occupation in 1573 the city was under heavy canon bombardment. One canon ball flew directly in this house but nobody was hurt. As reminder of this wonder the canon ball has been attached to the house.

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This was the louse of a pastry chef. The windows in the middle of the stories have been the doors for to deliver grain.

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The house builder of the “Leeuwenburg” had to wait very long for his permit to built his house and also his original plan had been changed a lot. He was so annoyed about this that he put up the lions with their bottom to the city hall.

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Formerly on the fishmarket in Alkmaar a stork was living being in the service of the city. His task was to eat the fish waste. To prevent his flying away his wings were clipped. If this was necessary? He had all he wanted so he would have stayed anyway. I don’t  if this is true – but the story is nice!

The synagogue of Alkmaar

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The “hofjes” of Alkmaar are almshouses around a courtyard. They were privately founded and served as a form of social security for elderly women who lived in poverty and without any men. These courtyard are still inhabited but the ladies are neither poor nor old and also the last rule is not followed anymore.

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The mill of Piet:

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One of the oldest houses of Alkmaar is from 1540. The folding shutters have been used to display goods and to sell “from the living room”.

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The town hall of Alkmaar:

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On the roofs of the town hall and the weigh house sit two golden pigeons.

 

Unfortunately Domy and Yves have to return home for family reasons. As farewell we treat ourselves with a gorgeous meal in an Indonesian restaurant. It is a pity the four of us enjoyed our biking trip very much. We will continue next year.

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We decide to return home as well, it is better to repair Rainer’s  bike.

Thanks a lot for all of you who travelled with us,