Thursday, January 7, 2010

Dachau & Nürnberg

It is important for me to first begin this post showing complete respect for our German friends. While we have visited areas that are still recent enough in history to feel the wounds, we are respectful. Just the same as we would visit the south of the United States to observe slavery museums and such, we also visit concentration camps and areas of history in Germany and the surrounding countries for the simple reason of knowledge. It's important to learn from our pasts, both good and bad.

With that said and full respect given, I can move on. We visited the Dachau concentration camp and finished the day in Nürnberg. I take few photos of camps because I simply don't need them. There are few, but the ones that are here remain a powerful reminder of those who struggled.

In German, this sign translates to: work makes free. Obviously, direct translation is not always the case... so it's meant to mean "work will set you free" as is the powerful saying from these "work" camps.


fences surrounding the camp (danger zone)

old railroad tracks

never used gas chamber disguised as a "bath" room

area (and outlines) of where living quarter buildings once stood

It rained the entire time we were at Dachau. Perhaps it was meant to be that way. It's always a somber experience as you pay tribute... but the rain just seemed fitting.

We headed toward Nürnberg after and arrived at dark. No more rain. These photos are a mix between the evening and the next day.

This is the (old) city wall. Being the second largest city in Bavaria (1st=Munich), it's obviously grown out of its shell. We actually stayed directly across the street from the city wall.

One of our excursions by train was to see the courthouse the Nürnberg trials were held at, post war. Rumor has it, you can ask the guards to show you the room and they will. Obviously, with the construction you see (and Germany being on holiday this week), the courthouse itself was closed. We were only able to see the outside. The room is also still a working courthouse room. It was expanded during the trials and a wall was taken out to enlarge the room.


Prison behind the Nürnberg courthouse-- also used during the trial to house the "criminals"

Here is Nürnberg's Frauenkirche (Church of our Lady). Dresden also had one. It's a popular name for a Catholic church and in Germany it's used often, too.

Ray & Steve in front of the Frauenkirche

This is a fountain in the Hauptmarkt (main marketplace). It is lovely... and surrounded by a large fence which has a gold ring. It is said to be good luck (a Blarney Stone of sorts) if you rub it. We didn't... I only read this information later.

These photos are of the St. Lawrence Church

The next day we made our way back into the Hauptmarkt and were able to snap a few photos before heading underground to the U-bahn (metro).

(same square... somehow a few pictures from the previous evening slipped in here...)

One lonely Christmas market stand still left...

I don't know what this building is. It's not the Rathaus as I suspected it may be...

Europe is way more bicycle friendly than America!

Another excursion... Nazi party rally grounds -- again, not the most popular of places. There was only one other tourist there apart from us. Plenty of parking... to put it mildly (we took the metro).




steps up leading to the platform


overview of the stands

1/2 of the stadium has since been turned into a sports arena, it seems. I guess since the bleachers were already in place?!


and far away...

Kay & Steve on the platform

Kay being artsy with her photography!

Next stop, Salzburg!