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The Pied Piper of Hamelin, a character from Brothers Grim tales

We all know The Brothers Grimm since our childhood years. In early 19th century, they transformed folklore stories into a collection of over 200 children tales. “Hänsel and Grethel” was their most famous one that I know about, but have any of you heard about the Pied Piper of Hamelin?

I only recently discovered both the story and the town. Because Hamelin is a beautiful town in Lower Saxony, and the characters of the Pied Piper tale can be seen today, scattered everywhere, in the historic center.

The Tale of Pied Pieper

In summary, the tale is about a man who was promised a fortune if he got rid of the rats that had invaded and plagued the small town. He did it, but the people didn’t want to reward him anymore. He later returned to revenge himself, making all the small children to disappear in the same way he did with the mice: they were hypnotized by the music of his flute and followed him away, never to return home again. Quite a grim story, not my favorite to be honest, and I hope it was just that, a fantasy, or that it got badly twisted over the centuries.

The Town

But let’s get back to nowadays Hamelin, and I’ll share with you more about this lovely, colorful, laid-back town.

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If you’re based in Hanover, the closest big city, you get here in less than an hour by driving or by train. There are also other nice towns, close to Hanover, that you might want to check and that I really recommend visiting:

Weringerode

Marienburg

Four days in Lower Saxony

In the historic city center, the streets are paved by the everlasting big blocks of stone, and on the sides, the beautiful buildings, some transformed in museums, some in hotels or restaurants, will make you stop and stare and visit and take many photos:).

The recommended route is this red line, if you don’t have too much time, and want to experience the best in a couple of hours.

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The museum of Hamelin is this beautiful building in Weser Renaissance style, a cultural-architectural style found only to the Weser area in Central Germany.  But the museum itself is a great place, showcasing the history of the town, the story of the Pied Piper of course, and a modern puppet show. To its left, part of the museum and connected by a passage-way with it, there’s another beautiful building with a bakery at the first floor.

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This beautiful museum and a Pied Piper statue. Pied is actually the colored costume he is wearing and Piper comes from his Pipe or flute, used for attracting the mice and later on the children.
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Another beautiful looking building, connected to the museum, with the bakery at the ground floor.

But the story of Pied Piper does not remain closed only for the Museum, it’s everywhere you turn your head: statues of the characters, on the paved roads and on the buildings’ facades.

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The City Hall Building is another landmark that I liked a lot. In the square in front of it, from May to September, on Sundays, at 12:00 pm, there’s a 30 minutes show, free to watch, where people play the story that made this town famous. Or at 4pm, all these bells from the front wall of the City Hall start to sing, the two small doors on second floor open wide, and the story of the Pied Piper is played by the dolls.

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Visited April 2017

 

 

 

 

 

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Marienburg – A castle for a birthday

Marienburg, this beautiful Gothic Castle, located 30km away from Hanover, was erected in the 19th century by King George V of Hanover as a present to his wife Marie, hence the name Marienburg or “The castle of Mary”.  It clearly had no military or defense purpose, and was used as the Summer residence of the ruling family.

Continue reading “Marienburg – A castle for a birthday”

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Follow the Red Thread in Hanover – a self guided tour

Whenever we combine travel and holidays with visiting good old friends I’m the happiest! Needless to say that we had the best of time in Lower Saxony, at the invite of our dearest friends who live here for many years already.

We discovered another beautiful part of Germany, that we had never explored before. Here is the preview of the entire trip: Four days in Lower Saxony.

Continue reading “Follow the Red Thread in Hanover – a self guided tour”

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Four days in Lower Saxony – visiting the timber houses

So what is there to see in Lower Saxony, the second largest land of Germany?

A great deal of beautiful towns first of all! And what’s the special thing about many of these towns? The half-timber houses!

The method of timber-framing in house building, has been used for thousands of years around the world, but Germany and France’s Alsace region gather the biggest number of these beautiful and colorful, traditional houses. Continue reading “Four days in Lower Saxony – visiting the timber houses”

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The UNESCO Mountain Park from Kassel

Only in Kassel, there’s a whole park, Wilhelmshöhe Bergpark (or Mountain Park) that’s enlisted today as a UNESCO World heritage: Lowenburg or The Lion’s Castle, The Oldest Public Museum in the world and Hercule’s Monument are all here, and all worth visiting. Continue reading “The UNESCO Mountain Park from Kassel”

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Burg Altena – the first youth hostel

Not once, while travelling in North Rhine Westphalia, had we heard talking about Sauerland… If you’re a lover of recreation activities: trekking on scenic mountain trails or mountain biking or even water sports, this land of fields and forests is a great place to do all that and more. And of course, scattered here and there are also a few pretty nice towns.

One of them is Altena, a small town that stretches on the river banks of Lenne.

Continue reading “Burg Altena – the first youth hostel”

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Lüdinghausen and three moated castles

Some weeks back I was writing about Munster, this town in Germany that we know so well because we have visited it 9 times already. But we have also explored the nearby area and in this article I will tell you the story of another German town, where you find not one, not two, but three moated castles.

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Munster in a nutshell: Bicycle Capital of Germany and Green City

Munster is the town we have traveled the most outside Romania. Once a year in the past nine years, and the more I get to know it, the more I love it.

This town can be described in many ways, but to sum it up it’s the bicycle capital of Germany, it has one of the highest standards of living in Europe and has some of the best universities in Germany.  Continue reading “Munster in a nutshell: Bicycle Capital of Germany and Green City”