Koblenz, German Corner, Marksburg Castle

August 6th ~ Koblenz, Germany

View of Koblenz and Rhine River taken from Marksburg Castle

View of Koblenz and Rhine River taken from Marksburg Castle

Koblenz, also spelled Coblenz, is located right on the confluence (junction) of the Moselle and Rhine Rivers in the western part of Germany. We had cruised right past this city in the middle of the night several days earlier.

TRIVIA MOMENT: Koblenz is a sister city with Austin, Texas.

Confluence of the Rhine River and the Moselle River

Confluence of the Rhine River and the Moselle River – Deutsches Eck (German Corner). In this picture the Rhine is on the left and the Moselle is on the right.

This time through we had a chance to explore. But first a tiny bit of history.

This is a very old settlement, dating clear back to 1000 BC, when early fortifications were built on the hill above Koblenz. Even Julius Caesar comes into play, building a bridge here around 55 BC.

It would be ludicrous to try to detail all of the back and forth that took place over the past 2000 years, but suffice it to say this territory has been conquered, traded, battled over, given as prize or via treaty agreement, invaded, and bombed out. Most often she traded hands between the Romans, Franks, French, Germans, Swedes and even the Russians and Prussians, with a few others tossed in for good measure.

The city also marks the northern border of the Rhine Gorge, the section of the Rhine River that was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2002.

Walking Tour Through Town

Our walking tour takes us through the Altstadt (old city), starting off where the two rivers come together. There is a huge monument that presides over the triangular park. As you are facing the water from the statue, the Moselle is on the left and the wider Rhine on the right.

Monument at Deutsches Eck ("German Corner")

Monument at Deutsches Eck (“German Corner”)

The story behind the statue and monument is interesting. The original equestrian statue of the German Emperor, William I (William the Great), dates back to 1897. The inscription on the base (English translation) reads “Never will the Empire be destroyed, so long as you are united and loyal”.

Thinking this was a base of operations, the area was heavily bombed in 1945 (World War II). The statue was badly damaged and taken down shortly afterwards. By 1949, Germany was divided into two parts, the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic; the capitalist west and the communist east.

The German Corner was later turned into a monument with visions for German unity by then President Heuss. The coats of arms of all the German states were installed and a large German flag was flown over the plaza.

Finally the Berlin Wall came down in 1989 and three slabs of concrete from the actual wall were placed next to the monument.

A section of the Berlin Wall is also on display

A section of the Berlin Wall is on display

After the reunification and much debate, a replica of the original sculpture and the statue was created and installed in 1993. The three parts of the Berlin Wall are dedicated to the “victims of the division”.

A memorial to honor those we lost on 9/11 sits near the waters edge

A memorial to honor those we lost on 9/11 sits near the water’s edge

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Basilica of St Castor

Basilica of St Castor

Interior of Basilica

Interior of Basilica

Liebfrauenkirche

Liebfrauenkirche

Interior of Liebfrauenkirche

Interior of Liebfrauenkirche

And a few more random shots taken in Old Town

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The little guy on this statue also has a story.

Schangelbrunner

Schangelbrunnen

He looks pretty innocent, but don’t let him fool you. When you least expect it HE SPITS AT YOU!

He has caught many a tourist by surprise

He has caught many a tourist by surprise

He has become the symbol of Koblenz and even shows up on the manhole covers in town.

Manhole cover with Schangelbrunnen

Manhole cover with Schangelbrunnen

Marksburg Castle

Located in Braubach, a short bus drive from Koblenz, presiding above the Rhine River is the Medieval Marksburg Castle.

As part of the Rhine Gorge UNESCO Site, this is the only one of forty castles along this stretch of the river that was never destroyed. It was used as a defensive or protective structure and not a royal palace.

The views from the top of the castle were stunning.

View from the top of the castle

View from the top of the castle

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And the inside of the castle was pretty interesting as well. Gus managed to pop into a couple of photos when no one was looking.

Gus with several of his new best friends

Gus with several of his new best friends

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Ehrenbreitstein Fortress

Returning to Koblenz, the cable car carries us high over the Rhine River to get to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress. It too is part of the Rhine Gorge UNESCO sites, sometimes listed as Upper Middle Rhine Valley.

Koblenz Cable Car ride across the Rhine River

Koblenz Cable Car ride across the Rhine River

The Koblenz Cable Car ride itself takes you right over the Rhine River and provides scenic views of both Koblenz and the German Corner. I thought that the ride was every bit as interesting as our time at the fortress.

Ehrenbreitstein Fortress sits on the hill across the Rhine from Koblenz

Ehrenbreitstein Fortress sits on the hill across the Rhine from Koblenz

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Walking back to the ship, we passed through the park and noticed that a large number of people were playing Pokemon Go. It seems to be EVERYWHERE!

Back on board we are up on deck as we cruise past Deutsches Eck and continue north now back on the Rhine River

Cruising past the German Corner where the Rhine and Moselle meet

Cruising past the German Corner where the Rhine and Moselle meet (Ehrenbreitstein Fortress can be seen on the hill behind the monument)

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Click here for a short clip that shows how a cruise ship has to carefully negotiate the turn from the Rhine to the Moselle.

GRATITUDE MOMENT: Today I am grateful for the reminders that we have come far in our attempts to unite the world. May we never lose sight of the goal – WORLD PEACE.

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About Tim and Joanne Joseph

Hi and welcome! We are Tim and Joanne Joseph and we have just embarked on our "next chapter". At a stage in life where traveling the world, taking pictures, and sharing our adventures with friends and family will be our dream come true.
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16 Responses to Koblenz, German Corner, Marksburg Castle

  1. Loved your post! I had fun at Markburg castle as well. https://marigold262.wordpress.com/2016/08/28/castle-peephole/
    Wasn’t the armor room fascinating?!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Isn’t Koblenz lovely? We were there with our daughter, who was home from college for the summer, last year. We stayed at Hotel Kornpforte for several nights in the old part of town. Koblenz was part of our three-city visit (Hannover and Berlin being the other two cities).

    Liked by 1 person

    • What a lovely trip to share with your daughter. How would you rate Hannover and Berlin vs Koblenz? I really want to get to Berlin one of these days and know very little about Hannover.

      Like

      • Hannover was our accidental choice; my husband had a conference there (he teaches and studies genetics). That was a nice town with interesting history – only two blocks of the old city survived WWII. Berlin was my favorite – big, interesting, so much to see. We spent a lot of time in what was East Berlin, which still feels very different from the West Berlin side. We took a walking tour that was fabulous in spite of the information overload! And it was so easy – mostly – to get around. All that history in Berlin – I would love to return there.

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  3. Thanks for your input. I have made it three times to Germany, but somehow Berlin never fit into the itinerary. I must rectify that. I have wanted to explore both sides ever since the wall came down.

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  4. Koblenz is beautiful. Unfortunately we only had a short time in the port, due to some delays earlier in the day in Heidelberg. Plan on going back some day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is a shame that you did not have more time here. I know that delays, cancellations, itinerary changes, strikes, illness and other inconveniences sometimes put a roadblock in our plans. But I figure we were blessed to have the opportunities that were presented, and sometimes those alternative plans turn out to be jewels. Last year when our cruise through Malaysia had to be cancelled due to an oversold ship, our replacement trip through Cambodia turned out to be an amazing alternate. Now I still have some great replacement cruising to look forward too!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. fotoeins says:

    * The Schängel Fountain has a great story with the “bad or naughty child” as a nickname for Koblenzers.
    * What many consider as the Deutsches Eck or “German corner” is not the original corner. The present location used to be river and was filled in, which means the first or original Deutsches Eck is located further back.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. tigre23 says:

    Again, very informative and great photos! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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