Boarding the car ferry at Meersburg, very windy and overcast, the lake a bit choppy, cold on the deck outside,still an enjoyable trip on the water only about 30 minutes (I think). Pretty views of the shoreline as we left Meersburg, Dagobert’s Tower distinctive on the receding skyline. Meersburg is the main center for journeys across Lake Constance with access to the International lake, the lower lake, and the Rhine. Konstance shoreline coming into view.
The trip across the water to Konstanz made a nice change from coach travel. Once again we are walking down the streets of a very ancient town, with a history dating back to the late stone age. Originally the town named Constantia after a roman emperor Constantius chlorus, who fought the Alemanni in the region and fortified the town around 300 AD. The Alemanni, an alliance of Germanic tribes located around the upper Main river in Germany.
Konstanz old city wall
The city of Konstanz is a University city, it has a population of 80,000 inhabitants. Parts of the Old city wall still stand, like the Schnetzor tower on the bank of the river Rhine, and the Rheintorturm Gate. Near the Rheintorturm Gate, a number of attractive oriel windows, a sandstone archway with carvings and very pretty oriel window above. Quite beautiful.
I love the curved gables of the facade on so many of these old style houses, like the one above. We passed this interesting model in a shop window as we walked through the streets of Konstanz, just couldn’t resist a photo!
Martyr’s of St Stephen’s Church – Konstanz
Ahead, St Stephen’s Church the oldest founded church in Konstanz. St. Stephen the patron saint of the church; a protomartyr of Christianity. He preached shortly after Jesus’ crucifixion, condemned for blasphemy and stoned to death. His statue with a rock and a palm leaf placed in a niche above a statue of St John of Nepomuk on the outside wall of the church. St John of Nepomuk, c.1345 – Praha 1393, became patron saint of bridges after he was thrown from Charles Bridge in Prague on the orders of King Wenceslaus of Bohemia and drowned. Nepomuk as confessor of the queen of Bohemia, refused to divulge the secrets of the confessional to King Wenceslaus, this cost him his life. The good old middle ages.
Cathedral of Constance
Next, coming into view the spires of the Cathedral of Constance – (Konstanzer Munster). An austere Romanesque basilica constructed around 1052 and consecrated in 1089, although the history of the site goes back to 590. It has had a lot of rebuilds over the centuries after a building collapse, a number of fires, and earthquake damage in 1911 when it lost its finial. This Cathedral has seen a lot, however the last straw came in 1821 when the German Bishopric dissolved and the regional diocese moved to Freiburg; the Roman Catholic Diocese of Konstanz having survived almost 100 bishops over 1200 years.
I’m always fascinated by tombs and crypts in these old churches and this one has a Memorial slab from 1629. Some of the 100 bishops of the diocese’s buried under memorial slabs or in raised tombs in Konstanz Cathedral. Inside, the carved Choir stalls made from walnut are particularly beautiful, as well as the relief carvings on the two main entrance doors depicting the life of Christ. Beautiful stained glass windows.
Harbor Entrance Konstanz
Down to the waterfront, a park nearby, fresh greenery and the most beautiful plum-colored autumn leaves. At the entrance to the harbor of Konstanz is a statue of Imperia commemorating the Council of Konstanz that took place between 1414 and 1418 in the Konzilgebaude (Council Building). The statue 10 metres high made of concrete, weighs 18 tonnes, stands on a pedestal that rotates around its axis every three minutes.The statue erected in 1992 so fairly recent.
The Imperia has a very interesting story attached to it. Imperia, a women holding two men on her hands. The two men represent Pope Martin V and Emperor Sigismund. Both men naked except for the symbols of their power. The statue refers to a short story by Balzac “La belle Imperia”, a harsh satire of the clergy’s morals, where Imperia seduces cardinals and princes at the Council of Constance and has power over them all. I thought the statue and the story quite hilarious.
The Konzilgebaude or Council building is an impressive, large stone building on the waterfront which played a major role in the history of Konstanz. Built in 1388 as a granary and warehouse, it is now remembered historically as the place where Pope Martin V was elected. It is now a Concert Hall.
On the waterfront, a statue dedicated to Count Ferdinand Zeppelin (1838-1917) who was born in Konstanz, the founder of the Zeppelin Airship company; the Zeppelin LZ1 being the first successful airship.
We passed this large well-preserved old building in the town area near St. Stephen’s Church. Built around 1294 as a fish market it has a lovely mural depicting the daily activities of the fish market. There are many interesting buildings in Konstanz, certainly worth a visit.
The coach drove on to Singen, our tour group staying the night at the Holiday Inn. An interesting building across the square from the motel has an excellent Italian restaurant on the ground floor, enjoyed a really nice dinner there.
Tomorrow, heading out towards the Black Forest and Lake Titisee.…..
- Beautiful Lindau the island on lake constance
- sightseeing Munich Bavarian capital romantic road germany
- Romantic Road – Nymphenburg Palace – Munich
- Ettal Abbey and Pilgrimage Church
- Garmisch-partenkirchen ski resort – Oberammergau village
- Extravaganza – Schloss Linderhof | King Ludwig
- Hohenschwangau Neuschwanstein Schwangau
- Beautiful Schloss Neuschwanstein
- Abbey of St Mang’s Fussen Bavarian Alps
- Beautiful rococo Wieskirche beautiful Bavarian alps
- Augsburg Fuggerei village settlement
- Dinkelsbuhl medieval fortifications-medieval city wall
- Rothenburg – a beautiful medieval town
- Romantic Road attractions Germany
- Romantic Road Frankfurt Germany
- Bavaria Germany Wurzburg – along the Romantic Road