Bamberg: A Northern European Venice

 Our second weekend in Germany found us about two and a half hours away from Munich to the north, in the city of Bamberg (just north of Nuremberg). A college friend who lived in Bamberg until a couple of years ago highly recommended it, and after looking at one or two pictures on Google images I was sold. Having access to a company car that weekend meant we had an extra element of excitement thrown into a weekend away, and we merged onto the Autobahn with a mixture of nerves and total joy. Driving is a luxury that we sometimes find ourselves missing!

We made it into Bamberg easily, but navigating a very old city in the smallest of cars can prove to be difficult. Inevitably, we were backing up one-way streets with no outlet in the dark ("Oh THAT'S what that sign meant!"), dodging pedestrians, and cursing Google for failing us (come on, Google, figure out the construction areas!). We finally made it, though, and John got to figure out how to park our car in the teeny-tiny garage at the hotel using a metal turn-table and parking on a metal shelf of sorts that can be raised or lowered into the ground to park other cars (see below). Let's just say that Europeans know how to maximize their space.

Bamberg is known as the Venice of the North, as it is located on the Regnitz River, and many beautiful buildings sit directly on the water. Saturday was a perfectly crisp fall day, perfect for market-strolling, beer-sipping and people-watching (and trying to stomach the liver noodles that I accidentally ordered...now I know what Leber means!) at an outdoor restaurant, and wandering the quaint streets in search of ivy-covered buildings. I loved looking at the fresh, local produce at the outdoor markets, and especially at the huge selection of flowers they always sell. German towns boast beautiful architecture in big and small spaces, and there is such a uniquely lovely and clean sense of style that is so different from the southern Europe I am more acquainted with (and which I totally love as well). We stayed in a 500-year old converted mill right next to the river and very close to the heart of the old town. It was a fun weekend discovering our first German town outside of Munich, and we're already making some plans for more smaller-town trips in the coming months, especially as the Christmas markets begin to pop up!

I love these fresh wreaths that are sold just about everywhere. The Christmas markets open next week, and I can't wait to buy my Christmas wreath!

I love these fresh wreaths that are sold just about everywhere. The Christmas markets open next week, and I can't wait to buy my Christmas wreath!

So many buildings in Germany seem massive to me. To give you some perspective, John is 6 feet tall.

So many buildings in Germany seem massive to me. To give you some perspective, John is 6 feet tall.

Ivy-covered homes and public spaces always beckon me to pull out my camera. Fall was so vibrant this weekend!

The particularly "Venice" area of Bamberg. I'll gladly live in any one of these houses, thank you.

A 3D map of the city ("Stadt") of Bamberg. This kind of reminds me of the 3D map of Paris in All the Light We Cannot See...

A 3D map of the city ("Stadt") of Bamberg. This kind of reminds me of the 3D map of Paris in All the Light We Cannot See...