Above: Cologne at dusk, 26 May 2016 (HL).
Every year UNESCO-Welterbetag (UNESCO World Heritage Day) in Germany is celebrated on the first Sunday in June. I highlight a number of places designated World Heritage Sites in Germany.
- Aachen Cathedral (Aachener Dom)
- Bamberg Old Town (Bamberger Altstadt)
- Berlin Museum Island (Museumsinsel)
- Bremen Roland (Bremer Roland)
- Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom)
- Dessau Bauhaus
- Eisenach Wartburg
- Eisleben Luther sites (Luthers Geburtshaus, Sterbehaus)
- Essen Zollverein
- Hamburg Commerical and Warehouse Districts (Kontorhausviertel, Speicherstadt)
- Lübeck Old Town (Lübecker Altstadt)
- Potsdam Palaces and Parks
- Regensburg Old Town (Regensburger Altstadt)
- Speyer Imperial Cathedral (Kaiserdom)
- Upper Middle Rhine Valley (Oberes Mittelrheintal)
- Wadden Sea (Wattenmeer)
- Weimar Bauhaus
- Weimar Classicism
- Wittenberg Luther sites (Lutherhaus, Stadtkirche)
Aachen Cathedral (Aachener Dom)
From 786 AD/CE, Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne built his imperial palace in what is now Aachen. Built between 793 and 813 AD/CE, the Palatine chapel includes the original octagon, an example of Carolingian Renaissance construction. The church would eventually become the core for the much larger “surrounding” cathedral. Aachen's Cathedral is Germany’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site (1978). The first Sunday in June is UNESCO World Heritage Day in Germany; this year it’s June 4. Aachen, NW, 🇩🇪 – 14 Jan 2013 (© HL).
Bamberg Old Town (Bamberger Altstadt)
In the Neue Residenz (New Residence built for the bishopric in the early 17th-century), the bright colours in the Rosengarten (rose garden) balance the greys and browns of the stonework from the former St. Michael’s monastery hovering on Michaelsberg hill in the background. This entire area is in Bamberg’s Old Town which has been inscribed as UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1993. The first Sunday in June is UNESCO World Heritage Day in Germany – in 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-WelterbeTag am 4. Juni statt. Bamberg, BY, 🇩🇪 – 23 Jun 2010 (© HL).
Berlin Museum Island (Museumsinsel)
The Berlin Museumsinsel is an island consisting of five museums built between 1824 and 1930: Alte Nationalgalerie (left-centre), Altes Museum, Bode-Museum, Neues Museum, and Pergamonmuseum. These museums represent individual artistic and historical significance, the continuing development of what museums should mean to society, and the achievement of a grand central civic project. I made this picture of Museum Island near the Buchhandlung Walther König bookstore that I visit whenever I can for the location (duh) and their arts- and photography-books. Berlin's Museuminsel is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999. (In 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Berlin, BE, 🇩🇪 – 3 Dec 2015 (© HL).
Bremen Roland (Bremer Roland)
Built in 1404 AD/CE, the Roland statue in Bremen’s market square is associated with the 8th-century AD/CE Frankish leader and Margrave of Brittany, a paladin of Charlemagne’s imperial court. The statue was built to represent rights and privileges associated with the free imperial city of Bremen. The Old City Hall (out of frame to the right) saw its start as Gothic in the early 15th-century with Renaissance style renovations in the early 17th-century. Bremen’s City Hall and Roland statue have been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2004. The first Sunday in June is UNESCO World Heritage Day in Germany. (In 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Bremen, HB, 🇩🇪 – 4 Jan 2013 (© HL).
Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom)
In silhouette after sunset, the twin-spired Cathedral and the adjacent Hohenzollern Bridge are Cologne’s well-known landmarks. The Kölner Dom (Cologne Cathedral) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. The first Sunday in June is World Heritage Day in Germany (Welterbetag, 4. Juni 2017). Köln, NW, 🇩🇪 – 26 May 2016 (© HL).
"Clear economical lines, transparent glass corners." We take for granted how we see much of the basics of 21st-century design and architecture derived from the Bauhaus movement in early 20th-century Germany. Simpler and less-ornate meant cleaner lines, and the idea an entire building wall could consist of (supported and reinforced) glass, let alone having a building's corner be glass instead of solid wood, brick, or plaster were ideas big, revolutionary, and perhaps a little heretical against accepted architecture. Design and form, form and function, and functionally designed architecture were all to be created and stand independently of class or economic status. Bauhaus main building, Dessau, Germany – 28 Oct 2016 (SP, SaxonyAnhalt)
Eisleben Luther sites: Luther birth house
Martin Luther was born in Eisleben in this house (“Geburtshaus”) on 10 November 1483. After five centuries and multiple phases of renovation and expansion, the house is now a museum dedicated to his early childhood in Eisleben and nearby Mansfeld. The houses where Luther was born and where he died are a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. (In 2017 feiert Deutschland das 500-Jahr-Jubiläum der Reformation und findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Eisleben, ST, 🇩🇪 – 27 Oct 2016 (© HL).
Eisleben Luther sites: Luther death house
At this location in Eisleben, the town where he was born, the museum here is dedicated to Martin Luther's final days and to the place where Luther died in 1546. But due to clerical/paperwork errors and misunderstandings, this house is *not* the actual place where Luther died; he died down the street in a building that's now a hotel. The houses where Luther was born and where he died form the inscription for UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. (In 2017 feiert Deutschland das 500-Jahr-Jubiläum der Reformation und findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Eisleben, ST, 🇩🇪 – 26 Oct 2016 (© HL).
The massive winding tower for Shaft 12 at the former coal mine Zeche Zollverein dominates the local landscape in Essen. Like the Zollverein, former coal mines throughout the Ruhr river region have been or are undergoing transformation from abandoned industrial sites to urban green- and cultural-spaces. Essen's Zollverein colliery is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. The first Sunday in June is UNESCO World Heritage Day in Germany. (In 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Essen, NW, 🇩🇪 – 29 Dec 2010 (© HL).
Hamburg Commercial District (Kontorhausviertel)
In Hamburg’s Kontorhausviertel, important brick buildings like the Chilehaus and Sprinkenhof are representative of brick construction in the late 19th- and early 20th-century. The Kontorhausviertel was the first district dedicated solely to office- and commercial/trading-houses on the European continent, and designed entirely to serve and complement the storage of goods and materials in neighbouring Speicherstadt warehouse district. Hamburg’s Speicherstadt and Kontorhausviertel districts are a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2015. (In 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Hamburg, HH, 🇩🇪 – 3 Dec 2015 (© HL).
Hamburg Warehouse District (Speicherstadt)
In Hamburg’s Speicherstadt, this view east from the Kehrwiedersteg pedestrian bridge is towards the Brooksfleet canal and beyond. The Speicherstadt is the port’s former warehouse district where goods and raw materials from around the world were stored. Hamburg’s Speicherstadt and Kontorhausviertel districts are a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2015. (In 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Hamburg, HH, 🇩🇪 – 5 Dec 2015 (© HL).
Lübeck Old Town (Lübecker Altstadt)
Lübeck remains as one of the finest examples of a medieval Hanseatic city with plenty of brick Gothic architecture. Founded in the 12th-century AD/CE, Lübeck was the former capital of the Hanseatic League, thriving as a major trading centre in northern Europe until the 16th-century. The city's Old Town is UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987. The first Sunday in June is UNESCO World Heritage Day in Germany. (In 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Lübeck, SH, 🇩🇪 – 29 Sep 2009 (© HL).
Potsdam Palaces and Parks (Schlösser und Parks)
"Calm & non-threatening." Glienicker Bridge, known as the former "Bridge of Spies", connects Berlin (left) with Potsdam and Brandenburg state (right). In decades past with the world divided along the lines of east (i.e., USSR) and west (i.e., US), this bridge was a visual reminder of the internal divisions between West Berlin (left) and East Germany (right), until the Wall fell in 1989 and the two Germanies reunited in 1990. The bridge is part of the overall Palaces and Parks inscription for Potsdam and Berlin as UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990. From Berlin’s Volkspark Glienicke to Brandenburg’s Potsdam, Germany – 8 Dec 2015.
Regensburg Old Town (Regensburger Altstadt)
Speyer Imperial Cathedral (Kaiserdom)
The Kaiserdom cathedral in Speyer, Germany, is one of the finest examples of Romanesque architecture in the country. Emperor Konrad the 2nd (Salian dynasty) had construction begin around 1030 A.D. The cathedral may not be the tallest in town, but it certainly is one of the most distinctive. In 1981, UNESCO awarded the location with the status of World Heritage Site (Weltkulturerbe). A one-way journey to Speyer from nearby Heidelberg is under 50 minutes with the S3 or S4 S-Bahn train, and the distance from Speyer train station to the cathedral is 1.5 km (less than 1 mi).
Upper Middle Rhine Valley (Oberes Mittelrheintal)
"Drive-by Loreley." There's no worry of hearing the sirens' call and running aground, because this is from on-board Deutsche Bahn's InterCity IC2218 train on the way north to the city of Cologne. With this view of the famous Loreley rock-cliff formation, winding back and forth against the twisting Rhine river shoreline slows the total journey some. This area is a part of the stretch between Mainz and Koblenz, known as the Oberes Mittelrheintal (Upper Middle Rhine Valley region) which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2002. Near St. Goar on the west flank of the river Rhein, Germany – 24 May 2016.
Wadden Sea (Wattenmeer)
Located in an intertidal zone in the southeastern reaches of the North Sea, the tidal mudflats near Cuxhaven (and near the mouth of the Elbe river) are a part of an extensive Wadden Sea nature-reserve and -park. It is the world's largest unbroken system of intertidal sand- and mudflats, stretching across 3 nations including Denmark, Germany, and the Netherlands. The Wadden Sea park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2009. The first Sunday in June is UNESCO World Heritage Day in Germany. (In 2017 findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Cuxhaven, NI, 🇩🇪 – 3 Jan 2013 (© HL).
This is the central staircase to the main building (van de Velde building) of Bauhaus University in Weimar, Germany. Completed in 1911, the building was designed by Henry van de Velde as the sculptors' studio for what was then the Saxon Grand Ducal Art School. The set of Bauhaus buildings was designated as UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. Weimar, Germany – 30 Apr 2015.
The Town Church of St. Peter and Paul dates back to 1500, although an original church on this site goes back to about 1245. With its alternative name as the Herder Church after the Johann Herder, the church is home to the triptych painting begun in 1552 by Cranach the Elder and completed by his son (Cranach the Junior). This church is a part of the "Classic Weimar" inscription as UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1998. Weimar, Germany – 30 Apr 2015.
Wittenberg Luther sites: Luther House
After successful completion of his doctorate in 1512, Martin Luther moved to Wittenberg University to become Professor of Theology. He would move into a former monastery (structure shown above). In time, he and his wife, Katharina von Bora, made this place their home for their children, his students and visitors, and their staff. The Luther House is 1 of 4 key Reformation sites in Wittenberg which make up the listing for UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. (In 2017 feiert Deutschland das 500-Jahr-Jubiläum der Reformation und findet der deutsche UNESCO-Welterbetag am 4. Juni statt.) Wittenberg, ST, 🇩🇪 – 30 Oct 2016 (© HL).
Wittenberg Luther sites: Town Church
Morning sun casts a warm glow on the City and Parish Church of St. Mary (Stadtkirche) in the east German city of Wittenberg. This was the church where Martin Luther preached and it's where Holy Mass was celebrated in the German language for the first time. This church is also considered the “Mother Church of the Reformation" and is 1 of 4 sites in the city as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996. Wittenberg is an easy trip on the train from either Leipzig or Berlin, and throughout this 2017 year, federal states, regions, and cities in Germany will mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Lutherstadt Wittenberg, Germany – 30 Oct 2016 (SP, Saxony-Anhalt).
I made the photos on visits between 2009 and 2016. Images for the German UNESCO Commission and the map of World Heritage Sites in Germany are from Wikimedia. This post appears on Fotoeins Fotografie at fotoeins.com as http://wp.me/p1BIdT-9TO.