Thursday, August 20, 2009

Koblenz, Braubach and Rudesheim, Germany

This morning we arrived at Koblenz at about 7:30 AM. After breakfast,
we took a bus to Marksburg Castle situated above the city. The
Marksburg Castle has been many owners over the years since the 13th
century. Today it is owned by a German government castle authority.
Individual tours of the castle are not allowed but only group tours
coordinated by a tour guide. To ensure that unauthorized tours get in,
the tour guide gets a key to the one gate to get into the castle and
then the guide locks the gate from the inside. The key is huge, about
12 inches in length, and the guide keeps it until the tour ends and she
(or he) unlocks the gate.

The castle has been renovated in stages but most is from the 15th
century. The paths are cobblestone but very rough cobblestone and with
old people (like us) it is sometimes hazardous. None today though.

(I've always wondered who in the castle staff was in charge of replacing
in batteries in the smoke detectors. I didn't relalize that they had
smoke detectors in the middle ages but I see them all the old castles!)

To get to the Marksburg Castle to ship stopped in Koblenz and we took a
bus to the castle. After touring the castle the buses took us to
Braubach where the ship was waiting for us. Then we cruised for most of
the afternoon down the Rhine. It seemed that almost every 10 km or so
the was a camp site for hunbdreds of tents and campers.

We saw plenty of castles along the river. There seemed to be a couple
every town we passed. All high up the towns in the hills.

At about 4:00 PM we arrived at Rudesheim where we visited a museum for
mechanical music instruments. Not just player pianos but those with
violins, drums, horns. Pretty much any musical instrument you can think
of. I did videos of a number of the instruments and will put them on
YouTube when we get home.

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