September 10, 2013 – Today started grey and rainy. We’ve really had great weather for most of the trip, though, so we’ve been fortunate in that regard. The plan for the day is to see two towns a train-ride away from Nuremberg – Bamberg and Wurzburg.
Due to train schedules, we started the day in Bamberg. We packed our umbrellas and our trusty Nalgene, and headed to the train station. We had heard that Bamberg was a quaint, historical, beautiful town. Perhaps it was the rain or the crowds – this was the first time we encountered busloads of tourists – but we decided to leave town on the next train to Wurzberg.
First up, though – lunch. We found a nice restaurant, called Würzburger Hofbräukeller, on the way to the fortress. It was before noon and not very crowded, so we were a little unsure if it was any good, but by 12:30 had filled up. We enjoyed their Oktoberfest beer and some sausages and chips. On a side note, when you’re ready to pay just hold up your wallet, and the check will appear.
Festung Marienberg sits on top of a hill overlooking the town. You get there by weaving your way through very narrow side streets and then up a beautiful stone drive and through several gates. We particularly liked the beautiful gardens and the fantastic view from the fortress, overlooking the vineyards on the town’s hillside.
We walked down through past the fortress walls and down through the park leading back to town. Up next was the Residenz, home of the prince-bishops. The formal gardens are beautiful, reminiscent of royal palaces in Britain. Fountains, shaded walkways, and gardens line the lawn before you get to the Residenz. The building itself is opulent, with large frescoes, impressive staircases, soaring ceilings, and glittering chandeliers.
The structure was bombed during the war and, even though it’s structural integrity was maintained by Allied troops, the writers of the informational signs seem much more pained and annoyed by the war damage than other areas we’ve visited. Or perhaps that’s just the formal tone of the translation. Regardless, the building is beautiful and well worth a visit. After a short train ride back to Nuremberg we headed back to our favorite spot for dinner. Tomorrow we head to Berlin.