Holy & Hospitable Route – Germany’s UNESCO Routes

November 6, 2015

You might have read my earlier blog on Germany’s Roman Remains & Bavarian Cheer Route, but if not, then don’t worry because we’ve got another new route for you!

The Holy & Hospitable Route takes you on a journey through Germany’s west and south-west, with regions such as the Moselle, Hessische Bergstrasse, Palatinate, Baden and Württemberg all included, as well as important religious sites, and some of Germany’s most famous tourist destinations.

Cologne is one of western Germany’s most popular destinations, and it’s no surprise as it’s a city that is constantly full of life. Every year at 11.11am on 11 November the Cologne Carnival kicks off, lasting until Ash Wednesday, with parties, events and other activities throughout the city’s streets. Cologne’s exuberance isn’t limited to Carnival, however, and the city has countless bars and venues to enjoy its signature Kolsch beer.

Nearby Trier is an ancient Roman city, over 2,000 years old, full of history and fascinating architecture. Throughout its history, there have been Roman Emperors among its residents, and the influence of this on the city is very visible, with Roman baths and more among Trier’s attractions. The city’s cathedral is also approximately 1,700 years old, the oldest Episcopal Church in the whole of Germany.

On your way to the Maulbronn Monastery complex, visit the Volklingen Ironworks, which has now become a popular museum and tourist attraction as well as the first industrial monument to be included in the UNESCO World Heritage list. Afterwards, contrast this with the remarkable Cistercian abbey at Maulbronn, which has been maintained to an incredible standard since being consecrated in 1178.

Lorsch Abbey is another holy site on the route, and one which was a famous centre of healing thanks to its herb garden. Founded in 764 AD during the reign of King Pippin, the Abbey was a famous landmark of spirituality and religion in the Holy Roman Empire until well into the Middle Ages. Nearby in Speyer lies another impressive cathedral, the Cathedral of Mary and Stephen, laid out in the form of a latin cross, the building is the city’s most prominent landmark as well as the world’s largest surviving Romanesque church.

To see Germany at its most romantic, head to Heidelberg, world-famous for its beauty and its charm. The castle overlooks the city from its raised platform among crags of Mount Königstuhl, and is one of the most impressive buildings in Germany. Finally, head to Stuttgart, which is one of Germany’s most cultural cities, as well as home to the Mercedes Benz legacy, including a fascinating and futuristic museum about the entire history of the automotive industry.

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