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In the mid-19th century, the industrial revolution was clearly showing its effects on trade and traffic. By that time, the only point to cross the Main river at Frankfurt was the Alte Brücke (Old Bridge). As the city refused to invest into a new bridge, it was the local business who joined forces and built the second bridge over the main. The fashion of time were metal structures and already in the construction phase, the steel bridge became known as “Eiserner Steg” (Iron Footbridge). It was finished in 1869 and a toll was levied to cover the construction costs in the first years. The Eiserner Steg is only used by pedestrians and bikes.
The last major refurbishment took place in 1993. Later, it became a popular place for couples to place “love locks” on – a tradition which has swept like an epidemic through Europe.
One of the loveliest parts of Frankfurt is the Main River. We walked across the pedestrianized Eisenbrucke - Iron Bridge which affords great views over the old town, the cathedral, the church in Sachsenhausen and from the other side some of Frankfurt's tall buildings. People had attached padlocks with their names and the names of their partners as a form of love token onto the sides of the bridge. We walked along the green banks of the Main on the Sachsenhausen side. Up on the road were the many museums Sachsenhausen is famous for.
Despite the fact it had been pouring down earlier, the sun suddenly came out. We passed a little Turkish boat called Meral's Imbiss and bought some ayran for me, beer for my husband and some sheep cheese filled sigara borek. We sat on a park bench, enjoyed the sun and watched the world pass by. Bliss!
On the other side of the Main, not far from Willy Brandt Square and the new opera are the Niazza Gardens which stretch along the banks of the Main. These are flower filled and lovely for a stroll.
Main River: A Beautiful Walk
Walking along the riverside paths is wonderful; you can watch the boats, bikes and people and when you cross the bridges to explore each side of the bank you can enjoy the view of the river and the scene of the office towers and other sights reflecting in it.
The paths are lined with pollarded trees.
Most museums are lined along the green banks of the Main on the Sachsenhausen side.
- National/State Park
- Budget Travel
Lazy River Cruise to Wiesbaden or Eltville
Frankfurt can seem a busy and noisy city if like us you're staying in the heart of town. If like me you crave a bit of wildness and open skies, then take the boat down river to Eltville. It takes four hours ( the train takes just under one!) and at a leisurely pace you get to watch the world go by. We sat in the early morning sun at the back of the boat and drank coffee while watching people riding bikes along the river, walking their dogs and generally going about their days
in quieter and greener towns and villages. We also got to see a great deal of industry and commerce; the river is a serious conduit down through Germany of all manner of goods and seeing the mighty barges and the people who make this river their floating home is fascinating to me. There is a little local history piped through in English and German, otherwise you can drift with your own thoughts as the houses and trees pass you by. Soon we reached wine-growing country and then we headed out into the Rhine and the towns of Mainz and Wiesbaden, both of which look so different from the water: there's much more pomp and ceremony about arriving by boat!
We then arrived at Eltville and the beautiful little quayside and all its roses, framed by the Burg and the church tower.
We strolled around the bijou centre just blown away by the sight of timber-framed houses and roses at every door. I am a garden designer by trade and if my clients could see these fabulous fat and healthy plants bursting with blooms I'd be in trouble because I couldn't tell you how the folk of Eltville do it! The burg looked just splendid surrounded by climbing and tumbling blooms and the scent on the air was to die for.
After a short viewing of the loveliness, we found tourist information ( note: many services are closed between 12 and 2 or even 3 on a Monday here) just before it closed for lunch and set out with a little map and a guide to the prominent old buildings. We aimed for one in particular as it was a restaurant. It was one of the oldest buildings in eltville and without realising it, we also stumbled upon the best view for dining. Stepping through the cool dark interior, we joined other diners on a terrace overlooking a vineyard and a castle, the vines sloping gently down to the Rhine glittering between the trees. We proceeded to spend a leisurely few hours eating and sampling the local Riesling. It is very good!
A further stroll through the old town and along the river and we happened upon a little wine 'tasting' booth just as it opened up for evening business. Well of course we sampled some! Only 1.5 Euros for another local white, this time a Hocheim or Hock as we call it at home. Again pretty quaffable and so reasonable. A good number of local folk appeared too, for a little glass of white or a spritzer of Apfelwein which so far, I have not dared tinker with!
Our ticket for the boat included a train home and all was perfect until we got to the station. First the train was delayed, the sign saying by 5 minutes, then an announcement mentioned 25 minutes. Half an hour later, nothing had arrived and there was no sign of anyone working for the RMV. Fourty-five minutes later a train rolled in and we were on our way home very tired and hot and doing our best to not let this experience taint the whole day.
- Wine Tasting
- Family Travel
On the rare days the sun comes out in Frankfurt, you can be sure that the city's population will pour down to the riverside to enjoy a pleasant stroll along the Main. If there's some special event, like the museumsufer, it is often so crowded you won't be able to move. Here you can take in the river and the spectacle of the office towers reflecting onto it, or walk down the city side and enjoy the views of leafy Sachsenhausen and the Dreikonigs church.
The river Main
The largest city on the river is Frankfurt, that is how they called in Frankfurt am Main. There are several bridges over the river and I’m sure it would be great having a walk along it. It was so windy when we went there but although I climb on a bridge and I forgot about the cold weather, I felt free…
A relaxing way to kill time in Frankfurt is to make your way to the Main River and stroll along the riverside paths. It's a great way to get your blood pressure down in this all-business city. It was rather cloudy when I took my walk, but you can still get the idea of how calming the views are.
- Business Travel
- Work Abroad
A Watery Artery
The river Main is hardly a romantic sight, which is perhaps one of the reasons why Frankfurt’s main water artery has never garnered the popularity of the Seine or the Thames. Nevertheless, the river is probably quite pretty during the spring and summer, when the various river cruise boats anchored along the quays offer tourists and residents the opportunity to spend a few hours drinking and dining aboard.
Brickegickel means “bridge tap“ and it refers to the deepest point of the river under the Old Bridge. Since 1401 this point has been marked by a crucifix placed on the bridge, to help the boats that had to pass under the bridge.
This very place was used also for the execution of criminals in those times when executions were performed by drowning.
The crucifix we see now is the sixth, it was placed here in 1994 because its predecessor had been stolen in 1992.
The name Old Bridge derives from the fact that this is the location of the very first (and for several centuries the only) bridge in Frankfurt, connecting the Old Town to Sachsenhausen. The history of the various bridges that existed here is well documented since 1222, but it is almost sure that a bridge here existed long before that date.
For several centuries the bridge had towers at each end, but sadly they were demolished, one in the last years of the 18th century, the other at the beginning of the 19th.
The various bridges that existed here suffered floods, were often damaged by ice and were badly damaged or destroyed during wars.
The Old Bridge we see now was built in red sandstone in 1926. During the WW2 two of its arches were destroyed by bombs, so the bridge required partial reconstruction after the end of the war.
It is a good place for taking pictures of the city and of the river, in fact the main picture in my intro page was taken from this bridge.
Walk Along the River
We spent only a day in Frankfurt. I was glad that we went for a nice walk along the river. Walking along the river was wonderful; all the activity of the boats, bikes and people. We crossed the bridges several times and explored each side of the bank. There were some incredible trees in the park that we photographed which looked like large candlabras.
We were on the bridge as the sun began to set. It was very beautiful watching the sky turn such beautiful colors and the reflections on the water.
bridge over the river Main - the "Deutschherrenbruecke".
Visiting this bridge you can walk at the south bank of the river Main in direction of the city - and you'll have several possibilities taking amazing pictures of the city.
there are a number of cruise operators that offer main river cruises. the primus line can be boarded on the river near the romer. they offer a one hour frankfurt city cruise which runs frequently every day. on weekends you can take day cruises to aschaffenburg, mainz, rudeshein and other locations along the river main. even though i did not have time to take it i have been told that the aschaffenburg cruise is a very nice trip.
- Historical Travel
- Museum Visits
Picknick at the riverside
I love to make picknick. At the river my prefered place is near the Maincafe as you can get there fresh and cold drinks.
The pictures were taken last September, it was on a Saturday when there was also a apple wine fest on the Roemer, there we got our wonderful hats.
This pedestrian bridge you will see if you walk down from "Römer" and if you would like to go to the museums at the south bank of the river or the quarter of "Sachsenhausen" you can use it. Or you can cross it and have a stroll at the south side of the river with spectacular views to the skyline.
At this bridge on the city side you could also start a short or long river boat tour. Information desks are close by.
- Family Travel
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Frankfurt am Main Travel Guide
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