Tim Burton's "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory"
Did you know that Gengenbach was chosen as the GERMAN town for Tim Burton's movie "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory"?
It says Düsseldorf in the movie but it's actually Gengenbach, where the German boy wins one of the golden tickets.
I don't know if the chocolate store from the movie is a real setting, but maybe you can look for it. If you have found it, please post it as a comment to this Off The Beaten Path Tip.
A Wombat in Gengenbach
It was the morning of a hot summer day, Mommy was out of bed amazingly early for her habits, so we decided to buy a Baden-Württemberg ticket, go on tour and visit a couple of places along the Schwarzwaldbahn route. I had long wanted to see Gengenbach, and Mommy had long wanted to take some photos of Gengenbach, so our first stop was settled.
We walked through the old town and then climbed up the hill through the vineyards to the St Jakobus chapel. All of a sudden I found myself on the Camino di Santiago again!
From the hilltop we had a lovely view over the town and the Kinzig valley with the surrounding hills. We found a shady bench, sat down and admired.
Gengenbach - Small town with much History
"Historic Landmarks of Gengenbach"
This picture was taken standing in front of one of the most beautiful town halls from the 18th Century. Viktor Kretz, a member of the town council and master builder, built it in 1784. The Gengenbach sculptor Peter Schwab created the beautiful figures: Justitia and Prudentia crowned by a powerful eagle carrying the town’s coat of arms. Four consoles with heads line the bottom of the decorative balcony. These heads represent the four great areas of the earth: Europe, Asia, Africa, and America. They are meant to demonstrate openness among the peoples of the world.
The fountain in front of the town hall is watched over by the knight and emblem of the city. Created in 1582.to be a visual representation of Gengenbach’s direct connection with the kingdom. In his right hand, he holds a scroll as a symbol of the town’s privileges, and on his shield there is a relief of Gengenbach’s coat of arms. A stonemason from the building crew of the Strasbourg cathedral created the knight during Renaissance times.
"The Tower of the Upper Gate"
This tower is also called the Haigeracher Torturm. This tower, the most important gate in the town, crowns the unusual townscape. The tower is a worthy conclusion to the funnel-shaped line of the fronts of the houses leading up to it. This is one of the town’s two watchtowers which still sports a paled gate weighing two tons. After 1689, the four-sided tower received its eight-sided top. We see a solar clock and the Gengenbach’s coat of arms from the year 1618 on the side facing toward the town.
"The Kinzig Gate Tower"
If you follow the line of the city walls from the Kinzig side, you can see that they lead directly to the Kinzig Gate Tower. This was the largest and strongest of all the towers and had the most important role in the town’s self-defence. The guard’s walkways from both sides led to this tower, from which the city was guarded day and night by the tower watchman. It was his job to collect the town’s customs duty on approaching rafts on the Kinzig and on merchants coming to the city over the bridge. Gengenbach had the right to levy customs charges based on its status as a free city. An even more important job the watchman had was to watch out for fires and to call out the hours of the day. All incidents were announced with the use of a brass horn that the town still has in its possession. The Kinzig Gate Tower was the main entrance to the town. The gate was remounted and the tower turned into a museum during a renovation which was started in 1991.
King Kong Explores Gengenbach
In the monastery garden thee was this newlywed couple who had their photo taken with the church in the background. The photographer laid down on the ground for a better perspective.
Those people laughed about Mommy taking photos of me... If they knew that King Kong was watching them!!!
Then King Kong decided to climb the steeple and onto the roof of the church.
Balancing on the roof, King Kong enjoyed the view of the old town.
Oe of the three old gate towers in the old town, and another viewpoint on another roof.
I climbed the town wall for a glimpse into the garden beyond the white wall.
Pilgrim on the Camino again
The view from the hilltop involves the entire old town of Gengenbach and a large part of the lower Kinzig valley. Gorgeous in the sunshine.
It was somehow disturbed by that cloud of smoke rising from a garden or orchard the left. We really appreciate people who clean up their stuff and get rid of their garbage but those guys ruined our photos!!!
The pilgrims trail reaches the hilltop with the last station of the Way of the Cross, the chapel of the Holy Sepulchre (the tiny building right of the church) and the church of St Jakobus.
Made it to the top!
Look - the golden shell on blue ground, the sign of the Camino di Santiago. We are on the Kinzig Valley pilgrimage route, the very same we had already touched in Wolfach a while ago.
After a while the smoke ceased and we enjoyed the view even more.