Germany’s enchanting Black Forest is at once formidable yet inviting; the enigmatic muse behind the world-famous fairytales of the Brothers Grimm. Its towering mountains and surrounding foliage are dangerously seductive in winter, and wonderfully radiant in summer. I’d decided to visit an old friend in Freiburg just a week ago because of its excellent location in Germany, just an hour away by train from France and Switzerland.
Freiburg is a university city known for its vibrant arts and culture, charming medieval architecture and for churning out great thinkers like Max Weber and Friedrich Hayek.
Let’s take a tour, shall we? I’ll take you through some of the more interesting parts of the city before ending off with the places you have to try for some authentic German food with wonderful hospitality.
The Münster or Freiburg Cathedral is regarded as one of the finest examples of gothic architecture in Germany. It was started in 1200 in the romanesque style before continuing in the gothic style about 30 years later. You’ll find many cathedrals in Europe host an eclectic blend of influences as a signature of the times, where building extensions and reparations lend a truly unique character to each church.
This is the only Gothic church tower completed in the Middle Ages that is still left standing in Germany today. Truly spectacular.
Gothic architecture tends to feature incredibly high ceilings, to invoke a grandeur that renders worshippers infinitesimal. It also inspires introspection and silent prayer with small windows and a closed structure. These statues of the ten virgins are also incredibly well-preserved, with the once vibrant paint now muted, dainty pastel.
Just outside the Münster is a farmers’ market that opens everyday from 7am to around noon. There is a wonderful array of local produce like native peppers, fruit and vegetables.
We couldn’t resist tucking into a second breakfast of Currywurst which is a local fast food favourite! It’s basically curry powder mixed with ketchup poured generously over a deep fried juicy pork sausage and topped with sauteéd onions. This was absolutely perfect for a rainy day! Mm..