For this post I’ve decided to just add some pictures I really like so far. They’re not the best quality, but that isn’t something I’m too worried about personally. Photography isn’t my forte. I hope you enjoy, DB.
This is one of my personal favorites, because I it shows such a beautiful urban space, but it is also in a very normal, non-tourist neighborhood. The tram runs along a stretch of track that is tree-lined, like a boulevard, with grass and soil mound raising it slightly above the walking and bike path to the left.
If this image of isn’t typical of Freiburg, then I don’t know what is. The Altstadt is criss-crossed with a system of miniature canals called Bächle. Originally meant to bring fresh water into the city and provide of source of water to put out fire, they now are used mostly as a means to cool your feet in the summer. Local lore says if you fall in one, you’ll marry a Freiburger. If that is true, I have to start getting used to this city.
This is a picture of Freiburg from slightly up from the base of the Schlossberg. There a city park and restaurant there and it includes fantastic views of the city. The city’s weather always seems to add to these views. Although it is die sonnigste Stadt in Deutschland (the sunniest city in Germany), rainstorms, and fast moving cloud formations seem to be a daily occurrence. Looking to the west in this picture you can see the cloud banks beginning to collect as they stall at the mountains in the Schwarzwald (Black Forest). Set against them are the Steeple of the Freiburg Münster and the tower of the Swabentor.
This is a photo from the hiking path leading to the top of Schauinsland, one of the mountains in the Schwarzwald, which goes from the back (away from the Rhine Valley).
This is a view from the top of the Schauinsland looking west. From here you can see France, Switzerland, and Germany. On clear days you can see Alpine peeks deep into Switzerland. Freiburg is below to the right.
These two images are both taken in the Seepark, which is adjacent to the Studentensiedlung, where my flat is. The park is absolutely beautiful and I love spending even five minutes there, the views are always worth a short or long walk there.
Spending time in Seepark makes it very apparent that in Germany, city planners and officials know how to do public spaces. It is beautiful, functional, well thought out, and diverse enough that multiple visits reveal new details.
Basel was beautiful, of course. It’s been hard to find a place here that isn’t (southern Germany and the Rhine Valley may be some of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen). This was just a street that wound up the hill the city is built on. Nothing particularly special about it as a place, but the view is aesthetically pleasing. Basel is certainly different from Freiburg though. It is rich—Switzerland is rich—and that is apparent everywhere you go.
This is a picture looking into the dome of the cathedral in Passau, a small city I visited to see my German exchange-brother. The cathedral is a baroque wonderland it is ornate from top to bottom. It was a breath-taking experience being inside, and if it wasn’t for my friends waiting outside, I could’ve spent all day inside. That interior was lit entirely by natural light, and the effect is outstanding.
The city is located where three rivers converge: the Danube, the Inn, and the Ilz. This is looking east towards the Danube along the Inn. The main part of Passau is situated on a peninsula between the larger Inn and Danube rivers. To the south (the right) about 1 or 2 km is Austria.
I honestly think this may be a favorite of mine so far. This quay follows the entire Inn from the edge of Passau towards the center at the head of the peninsula. The Cathedral steeples are visible in the middle ground. The curve of the Danube (which begins about where that small steep-roofed tower is) means the mountains behind the city’s skyline are in Austria.