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At the Northern Shore: Germany and the North Sea

In relation to other European nations Germany is a big country with some interesting features. While the south of Germany is bordering with the Alps and is in parts quite mountainous, the north is a very different place. Not many know that the country lays ashore not to one large body of water but two. There is the more quiet and enclosed Baltic Sea in the east and the more wide and open Northern Sea in the west. At the shore there are endless sand beaches and many quiet islands to relax with these unique colourful beach chairs. The most interesting feature though is most probably the wadden sea (last three pictures). It is a kind of a muddy place which is flooded twice a day and reaches at some points deep into the sea. The wadden is one of the most diverse bio habitats on earth and home to many micro organisms because it is biologically very rich in nutrients. Also it is home to the sandworm and to many kind of birds.

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Discovering Lübeck

Lübeck is a town in Northern Germany, once the great capital of the Hanse, a union of merchants in the middle ages which dominated trade in the Baltic seas for many centuries. So the city was also called the Queen of the Hanse and it’s inhabitants used to be wealthy and influential. Many beautiful buildings, especially churches, were built in these blooming years. Lübeck has a beautiful and well preserved historic inner town with a lot of water surrounding it, which makes for nice perspectives. The photographies were shot in September 2019.

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Hallig Hooge

Hallig Hooge is also called the Queen of the Halligen. The Halligen are very special islands in the wadden region of northern Germany. They are not protected by dykes and are very low, the inhabitants are used to the islands being flooded 40-50 times per year. So to be safe and dry the houses are built on so called warften, little villages built on earth mounds. Hallig Hooge and it’s nature is truly something extraordinary, a calm spot in midst of a rough sea.

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Perspectives on a Parliament and a Television Tower

Central Europe is particulary rich of famous landmarks. Two of my favourite structures in this region are the Parliamentary building in Budapest, capital of Hungary and the TV Tower at Alexanderplatz in Berlin. From an architectural perspective these two buildings don’t have much in common. While the Hungarian Parliament is a neo-gothic administrative building, grandeur in size and very unusual for a gothic building equipped with a beautiful red coppola, the TV Tower in Berlin was meant to be a show case for socialist architecture and technology and was easily seen from Western Berlin. As different as these buildings are they both were planned as and turned in fact out to be landmarks of their respective home towns – though in a different way than the architects envisioned. Germany today is reunited again, many structures from socialist times were torn down, the TV tower though became a signature building of the reunited city and a piece of historic futurism. The parliamentary building in Budapest on the other hand is the legislative building of the independent republic of Hungary today, which emerged from the Austro-Hungarian empire after World War I.

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Along the Elbe River

A couple of months ago I had the chance to travel to a part of Central Europe I haven’t been to before. The initial plan was to travel around Northern Bohemia in the Czech Republic. At last we ventured into the neighbouring region of Southern Saxonia too, as the borderlands are historically and geologically intertwined. The region is shaped by the Elbe river, one of the longest in Europe. Along the river you’ll find many towns, some are charming and touristy, while others are more industrial in nature (pictures 2, 3, 6). The highlight though is the magnificent landscape shaped by sandstone (picture 5). Climb one of the many mountaintops around sunset and enjoy the great view (last picture).

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