A Wine Tour
A Face-to-Face Encounter with Wine, History, Castles and Monasteries
Heidelberg – Speyer – Neustadt an der Weinstraße – Magonza – Castelli del Reno – Chiostro di Eberbach – Deidesheim – Forst - Friburgo
Heidelberg on the River Neckar, with its impressive castle, is one of the most beautiful German towns and also the symbol of German Romanticism, having been made immortal by numerous artists and poets. Mark Twain describes the town in his book “ A Tramp Abroad” : “The town lay extended along the banks of the river. The labyrinth of streets and alleyways gleamed like jewels in the sparkling light. A hill appears behind the castle reminiscent of a wooded cathedral and is further overlooked by an even more majestic peak” A guided tour of the town and castle follows. Then we travel on to Gimmeldingen, a picturesque wine village on the German Wine Street – visit to a wine-estate with wine tasting
We visit Speyer “The town on the river” and pay homage to the majestic Imperial Cathedral of the Salian Franks, the architectural roots of which date back to Conrad II in the year 1030 and is now under UNESCO sponsorship
In the afternoon we travel on to Neustadt an der Weinstrasse, a historical town surrounded by a veritable sea of vines and at the entrance to the Palatinate Forest. This, the undeclared wine capital of Germany, will captivate you with its historic centre, its half-timbered houses dating back to the Middle Ages, its hidden courtyards, its tiny alleyways and historic market square. A guided tour then takes you to a remarkable inner courtyard dating back to the Renaissance where we indulge in a wine tasting of Riesling wines with a difference led by a wine journalist or expert.
Mainz, the capital of the state of Rhineland-Pfalz, is famous for its carnival, its Cathedral of St. Martin with its two chancels, the Chagall window in the Church of St. Stephan and the Gutenberg Museum, built in honour of the inventor of the printing machine. Here you will be able to see the famous 42-Line Bible as well as other famous books dating back to the Middle Ages.
Early in the afternoon we embark on a boat ride from Bingen to see the castles of the Rhine: where rogue knights once ruled, magnificent ruins, toll castles with the impressive Loreley as our final destination….. later on, we will be visiting a wine-grower and have the opportunity of tasting wines from the Rheingau region
Kloster Eberbach in the Rheingau (UNESCO) is one of the most important Cistercian abbeys (built in 1136) in Europe and was the film location of “The Name of the Rose”, based on the book written by Umberto Eco. Certainly, in no prettier a countryside could any abbey be situated than Kloster Eberbach, situated as it is on the slopes of the Taunus, next to a vineyard. Our visit includes a guided tour. Later on in the afternoon we visit the “slow food” town of Deidesheim, famous for its grand cru wines from top quality vineyards such as Kirchenstück, Pechstein and Jesuitengarten. We will go for a walk through some of these vineyards from Deidesheim to the village of Forst before tasting some of these wines from the VDP wine-estates of von Buhl, von Winning and Bürklin-Wolf.
Not only the Brothers Grimm were inspired by the Black Forest to set the scene of their fairy tales. Freiburg, with its lofty minster and the open stream running the old town – a welcome refreshment for your feet during the summer – has a colourful weekly market which takes place around the minster in this, the door to the Black Forest