Old Town Weiden, Germany

September 18th, 2011 | Posted by Steve in Germany

Hi all,

These are a compilation of photos shot on 3 days over a 4 day period, Sep. 8, 10 & 11.  The weather was overcast on the 8th & sunny with various amounts of clouds the other days.  The photos are interspersed to show old town from one part to another rather than to follow my exact time & route.  I consider most of these to be snapshots & “I was here” types of pics so I won’t go into very much technical detail.

The old town part of Weiden is not very far from my hotel.  The hardest part getting there is watching the traffic where there are no controls crossing the streets.  Weekends are not very bad, but weekdays lookout.  Even before braking for a stop traffic seems to accelerate to a fearsome speed.

Approaching Old Town the first interesting building is marked the Café Buttner, except the ‘u’ has the two dots over it.  It is interesting for sure, but not historic.  This is apparently an old building, but not a really old building.  Shops, up scale shops, and banks are to the right, left, or down the alley shown at the right.  The banks are quite modern.

 

At this corner you wait for the green person in the stoplight to appear before you venture across the street.  Traffic, although 2 lane almost everywhere in downtown, is heavy.  Crossing against the red happens, but it is very rare.  The real no-no is making a right turn on a red light.  If it is allowed there will be a small green arrow sign right next to the red signal.  I have seen very few of these.

This area which covers quite a few square, oblong & odd shaped blocks has lots of shopping, clothing stores, 1 market, many apothecaries (not called pharmacies here), banks, jewelry stores, restaurants, antique stores, ice cream shops, drinking establishments, at least 2 fountains, a notary, a Burger King, phone stores, small hotels, a church, and a sushi house to name a few.  The McDonalds is a few blocks away still on the shopping street, but in the newer part of town.

The church is surrounded by buildings, the backsides of stores, and apartments.  The entrance is down a slightly sinister looking alley.  More on that later.

Before entering Old Town we passed a very tony clothing store.  This mannequin, at a heavily trafficked corner, was impossible to ignore.

 

I will not speculate if this was a comment on German mores, or just represented someone called away from finishing a display.  Two days later it had disappeared, or had become fully dressed.  As I said, it was in a very expensive clothing store.

Nearest our hotel this is this entrance to Old Town.

It is named Oberes Tor which means upper gate.  The building dates from 1543.  Keep in mind that what is left of the buildings is old, but the shops and interiors [that I have seen] are modern.  The interiors & the facades are kept up and often rebuilt.  Walking there today (9-14) the arch was partially blocked by a road crew who was busily putting in new pipes and trying to make the cobblestones appear untouched after they left.

 

Farther into Old Town and right in the center of everything is Altes Rathaus, the old City Hall.  It has a clocktower on the northerly facing side, a sit down restaurant shown here in front, and an ice cream parlor in the middle.  I have no idea what the upper floors are used for.  This shot is probably good enough to stand on its own rather than being just another “I was here” photo.

This is the northern side of Altes Rathaus with the clock tower.  Unfortunately this was shot a bit into the sun so the colors don’t show so well.

 

From the southern side of Altes Rathaus (2nd photo above) looking south you will see St. Michael Church towering above the rest of old town.

 

This is a view of the tower.  I am pretty sure some of the church bells I hear from my window come from here.  The red tiled roof in the foreground is from an unconnected building with shops on the ground level.  It is one of the buildings surrounding the church.

 

This next one is a view of St. Michael from the street/alley entrance.  I think a 20mm lens would have been more useful here in this cramped spot instead of the 24mm I carried with me.  The difference would have been only a few degrees, but it may have given a better sense of how closely this church is surrounded by other buildings.

 

Here is a (typical?) street scene from Old Town.  The facades are very interesting, and note the TV antenna.  A lot of apartments and homes in the city and in the country have satellite dishes, but a lot of TV antennas are still to be seen if you look about.

 

Near the Altes Rathaus to the north is a very large pole.  It is decorated in layers with coats of arms, brightly decorated figures, and topped off by an evergreen tree.  One of the coats of arms plaques is of a nearby U.S. Army base.  I have seen only two other town poles so far.  One in one of the country villages on the way to work, and one from a train somewhere else in Bavaria.

 

In the distance above is another old building, Unteres Tor or lower gate which also dates from the mid 1500s.  It dominates the top end of the Old Town.  Inside it is a hotel and the sushi bar I mentioned.

 

Like the Oberes Tor it has an arched walkway out to the rest of the city.  This next one is a shot looking back.

 

A few very short blocks away from Old Town is St. Josef.  It looks too big to be a church, and too small to be a cathedral.  Most of the church bells I hear from my room come from St. Josef.  The bells will carol for 10-15 minutes sometimes.  The bell tower is too tall to tell if there are real bells in there or just a PA system.  It doesn’t really matter.  As I shot this picture the bells were blasting away, it was very loud.

 

Right across from St. Josef is a small park.  I was quite surprised to find this monument in the park.  It is in German, but as near as I can tell it is a stone remembering the Jews from this area lost in the Holocaust.  Perhaps one of you can translate it.  The stone is no more than 6 feet tall.  It is a small memorial perhaps, but a memorial nonetheless.

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