Friday, June 1, 2012

Along the Main

In Wurzburg, we viewed the most amazing example of conspicuous consumption ever, namely the Wurzburg Residence.

Completed in 1744, this home of the prince-bishops has to be seen to be believed.  Cameras are not allowed, so I bought a few postcards to share.  The entrance hall was designed to allow carriages to circle and discharge their passengers indoors.  The grand staircase is said to be the most beautiful in the world.

The Venetian painter Giovanni Battista Tiepolo and his son Domenico were brought in to paint the frescoes.  The ceiling over the grand staircase is particularly awesome (and I don't use that word lightly.)  The artists painted scenes from the four (then known) continents with marvelous 3D effects.  Of course the American section depicts Native Americans, not the New York City skyline.

The ballroom is full of gilt and glitter and more of Tiepolo's artwork.
Another room is remarkable for its 3D plaster work.

There is also a Mirror Room so blinding that it defies photography.

Sadly, Wurzburg was mostly destroyed in WWII, so I’m not sure how much of the Palace is original, how much is restored, or even unrestored since we only saw a small percentage of the complex.

After the palace tour, our guide pointed out the Falkenhaus, rebuilt in every detail after WWII.
We were astounded by this performer.  I even gave him a donation, so you KNOW I was impressed.

And this couple kept watch over all the goings-on.

Next we visited Bamberg, which is one of the few larger towns in Germany that escaped bombing in WWII.  Bamberg is very connected with the river.  In fact, the town hall was built on an island.

Similar to some of the paintings in the Wurzburg Residence (which I couldn’t photograph,) this cherub’s leg has escaped the mural.

This is the Rosengarten (yes, that means rose garden) of the Bamberg Neue Residenz with Abbey Church of St. Michael in the background.

Views from the Town Hall bridge.

These houses are known as 'Little Venice'.

They even have gondolas, but I have to wonder if they’re just a tourist attraction.

After Bamberg, our cruise continued on the Main-Danube Canal.  Contrary to my expectations, the canal looked very much like the Main River.


  1. amazing art! I love the Rozengarten...I often think I would enjoy a fomal garden..but not all the work associated with it. What an amazing trip you guys had!!!!!!

  2. Fascinating photos and narration. I am impressed and amazed. The man levitating is unbelievable but since you gave him a tip, it must be so.

    Thanks very much.

  3. I think they must have styled the Wurzburg Residence after your house in Arizona. ;c)

  4. All those buildings and paintings are impressive. I'd still rather live in my small house.

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  6. Wow, what a great trip! I was never in Wurzburg, but saw lots of legs sticking out of ceilings. Seems to be a popular thing...

  7. Wow, I want to see these castles. Did you do more than just the cruise?