Monday, 2 August 2010

Beautiful Bayreuth - Part One of Two

We had a blast over the weekend, courtesy of a visit by our friends Nikolai and Carla, currently based in the UK.  Blessed be their BMW 318d, which gave us an opportunity to get places we'd otherwise not got to.....like the Eremitage (which is actually eminently get-to-able).








People dining around the central fountain
The Saturday's main event was a festival at the Eremitage, one of the baroque palaces of Wilhelmine, sister of Frederick the Great, who was responsible for  quite a few of the architectural and cultural highlights Bayreuth has to offer.  The palace is about 4 km east of the city centre, and Saturday evening's festival attracted about 7000 people, with a mix of contemporary bands, a wide range of food stalls, performing artists, an art exhibition, not to mention people in period costume on offer.  We arrived about 7 pm and stayed until the fireworks went off at 11, which were quite spectacular (forgot to take photos though I'm afraid).


The highlight of the event was the Eremitage itself, with its immaculately kept grounds, amazing pools and fountains, elegant buildings and a garden of flowers in bloom that smelt as good as anything I've ever experienced.  The original Schloss (palace) was destroyed in World War II, but the restoration has obviously been a meticulous labour of love, because the place is simply beautiful.   The Eremitage is the kind of place that feels magical in the long summer evenings, and has the promise of being just as wonderful in Autumn when the leaves change colour, in Winter in the cold and the snow, and in Spring when the trees are in blossom.  Magnificent, and none of our photos really do it justice.  Overall, the kind of place that makes one realise just how wonderful this Alexander von Humboldt jaunt really is.

Heading along the entrance-way

An awful lot of work went into the Palace's restoration
Just one of the folk on stilts wandering about

Large sections of the palace were shut off during the festival, further increasing our desire to return sometime soon
Next up (hopefully)?  Sunday's trip to Sanspereil.

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