2/8/16 – Tuesday
After all the wine tasting we were taken by mini coaches up to Reichsburg Castle. It was still pouring with rain and our guide and Tour Director advised us to be very careful. Cobblestones when wet are very slippery and dangerous. To make it worse the entrance to the Castle is a very steep incline with nothing to hang onto.
The castle sits on a hill roughly 300 feet above the Mosel River, towering over the town of Cochem. The castle was built around the 12th Century, however the castle that is there today is not the original castle. In 1689 French King Louie XIV ordered his troops to destroy it. For 180 years the castle sat on the hill in ruins. Then a wealthy businessman from Berlin, Louis Ravené decided to buy the ruins and rebuild the castle in 1868.
The original Castle was Romanesque style, Louis Ravené created a neo-Gothic castle that would be a summer residence for his family.
There are a couple of original Towers in Romanesque style one being the Witches Tower,said to be where they tried woman for witchcraft and threw them out of one of the upper windows. I was probably thrown out one of those windows in a past life!
Once we got inside the castle, climbing many tight stairs, there were so many rooms. Some large and some so small with the crowd of sightseers it became very claustrophobic.
One of the rooms went out on to a balcony with an amazing view over the Mosel River and valley and the town of Cochem. You wanted to stay and admire the view, until you hear your guide say – please only 12 people on the balcony at a time, it isn’t safe for anymore people. You don’t even count your out of there.
I could have sworn the floor was shaking at times. Once outside I asked my sisters if they felt the floor shaking , they said yes. So it wasn’t my Meniers deciding to have an attack!
Amazing furniture, artwork, lead-light windows, knights it has it all.
A Fairy Tale Castle.
To get back to the mini coaches we then had to walk down those slippery cobblestones. Going up was hard, going down was even harder! Slippery moss cobblestones, the rain pelting down. With my heart in my mouth I began my descent, one foot in front of the other. To make it worse as your going down there are people coming up the steep incline with umbrellas , and you’re trying to stay upright and avoiding those sharp points on the brolly. I looked ahead, and Paula was nearly running down to the coach. She said she went fast to get it over and done with. We all made it….no one fell over, or slipped considering a lot of the people had walking sticks etc. Perhaps the witches of old were looking out for us!
We climbed into the coaches and were taken a just a short way as a few of us were going to walk down through the town of Cochem. More wet slippery cobblestones to traverse over. You find you walk a certain way on the cobblestones to stay upright. (my osteopath says it’s actually very good for posture and leg work)
Another picturesque town, the Europeans love their flowers, they are everywhere! The romance, the history, I loved it and I know my sisters did too. One day we will be back.