Cochem & Burg Eltz
Our last trip before the travel restrictions kept us home was to Germany. A country that surprises me every time we have the chance to visit. Germany and Belgium share more than 150 Km of border, and in those regions their cultures amalgamate so well, that you will not catch much of a difference, unless you are closely acquainted with them.
We drove on this trip to Germany, since Cochem is only an hour away from the Belgian border and even shorter is you take advantage of good road conditions and no speed limit in the autobahn (the German highways). The drive through Germany's country side is always a delight, with beautiful landscapes and vineyards along the highway (if you like Riesling this is where it grows).
Cochem is a town in the Lower Moselle region, a town that straddles the Moselle River, and that was founded more than a thousand years ago. Looking at the city , as small as it is, you don't have to wonder why the city has remained for so long. The view of the river creates a beautiful scene and highlights all the flowers and vegetation around its cause.
Tourism is a very important economic stream second only to the making of wine to this area of Germany. The city counts with numerous restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops, and stores, offering its visitors many options to spend some time after taking in the views of the city.
If you are like me, a person who enjoys the architecture and history of the towns you visit, you will see that you can easily spend hours walking through its streets taking in the sights.
The Richsburg Cochem, or the Cochem Imperial Castle, sits at the top of a hill and you can see it from almost every point of the city. The Castle was, unfortunately, closed when we visited Cochem, but that only gives us an excuse to visit again. Day or night, the Cochem Imperial Palace is a sight that is appreciated by all its visitors.
30 Km away, or about a 30 minute drive though the scenic Moselle River, you can visit Eltz Castle, a magnificent medieval castle that must be in your plans if you are visiting this area.
There are two ways to get to the castle once you arrive there, you can park in the lot closest to the castle and a bus will take you to the entrance, or you can take a 15 minute walk through a trail in the woods, which provide you with the best view when you finally reach it.
The view from the trail is by far the best, it lets you approach it at an angle that allows you to take it all in one view. From here you can appreciate how is it that it has survived the many wars in the almost a thousand years of existence. Built on a hill and heavily fortified, it seems impossible to overcome its walls.
The castle was closed for renovation when we visited, but we will visit again since the whole experience is worth repeating.
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