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The Jugenstil head of Hygea
Leaving Jesuitenplatz in the direction of the next square called Gorresplatz, you will find a shoe store on the right hand side called "Leonardo". Stop and look straight up and you will find this incredible Jugenstil gable--the face of Hygea, the Greek Goddess of health and beauty. Funny enough, she is looking down onto the street and onto a well known sex shop called Beate Uhse--do you think they planned it that way when they built the store? Always look UP when walking in Koblenz, as otherwise you will miss the many beautiful gables such as this.
The "Schaengel" Statue
When standing on Jesuit Square and looking at the city hall, walk through the archway that leads under city hall (Rathaus). Immediately to the right tucked away in the corner you see the statue of this little boy called the "Schaengel". You will also see this same boy on every manhole cover in the city--he is one of the symbols of the city. "Schaengel" is the way of saying "little John" in the local Koblenz dialect. When the french occupied the city on 2 occasions, under Louis XIV and Napolean, many of the soldiers had kids with local women. As many of these soldiers were named John (Jean in French), their sons became known as "little Johns". Eventually all the kids of Koblenz became known an "little John's", or "Schaengel", as they are still called today. To top it off, this little boy is a fountain--but he SPITS the water at yu--symbolizing that the youth--and the people--of koblenz, do not like authority. they have been dominated so many times--by the Archbishop of Trier, by the French, etc, that they have grown to dislike authority. that is why this Schaengel spits in the very center of city hall's entrance.
Jesuit Square, called Jesuitenplatz in German, is 1 of the most beautiful squares of Koblenz. The jesuits came to koblenz in 1580 and built the Jesuit Church and a Jesuit College. the Jesuit college is now the city hall. In the middle of the square is a statue of a man named Johannes Mueller--a famous doctor and psychologist who came from Koblenz. Locals say he used to face the other way looking at the office of the mayor, didn't like what he saw, and so turned around. There is a beautiful cafe on this square called Cafe Lorenz. It is especially beautiful to see this square on a nice summer night!
The "Four Towers"
When you leave the Munzplatz and head down the pedestrian shopping zone, you get to a corner where you see the Pizza Hut. look up and you will see the famous four towers. These beautiful little towers, found on each corner, were all built after the reconstruction around 1689-1690.
The tower above Pizza Hut, and the one adjacent with the shield that says Hauptwache, date back to the 1690's, and were not destroyed by bombs in WWII. The tower above the "Apoteke" (pharmacy) was partially destroyed when the upper floor burned, and the tower above the tobacco store was completely destroyed in WWII. This very spot is marks the boundary of much of the bombing. Going back towards Munzplatz, most everything was spared in WWII, where as in the other direction, everything else was bombed.
The square called Munzplatz
Just up the street from the Church of Our Lady, you come to the next square, called the Munzplatz. Munz in German means "coin"--this is where they used to mint their own currency. It is a beautiful square, surrounded a couple nice cafes, and there is a beautiful and very modern fountain in on the side of the square.
On one edge of the square you see a little sculpture of a little drummer--you will find little sculptures like this all over the inner city. They represent people who, at one time or another, used to live in the city of koblenz, and each sculpture has its own curious history.
On the same side of the square, you see the beginning of the pedestrian shopping zone, which leads you to the famous "Four towers".
Leaving Florinsmarket Square, you see just down the street this very popular local drinking establishment called the Weinhaus Hubertus. It is the oldest wine drinking establishment in Koblenz, dating to the year 1689. It is done in the beautiful half-timbered style, so I would recommend going in for a glass of wine, and also to admire the beautiful architecture. This is 1 of the two most popular place for locals to go drink a wone. The other place is called the Weindorf, just near the bridge going over the Rhine River.
Koblenz is a very important center for the wine trade. Both the rhine and Mosel River Valleys are noted for their white wine, made from the small Riesling grape. this grape thrives in the soil of the region, which consists mainly of slate.
The Old Synagogue
You'll find this building right next to the Middle Rhine Museum, located on Florinsmarkt Square. This building, originally dating back to the Middle Ages, was used as the local Synagogue until the famous night known as Krystallennacht (Crystal Night), on November 9, 1938. On this date may synagogues were destroyed and the contents inside burned. Nowadays, there is a small Jewish Museum located inside in honor of the Jewish people that once lived in the city, and there is a small library used by the youth of the city. They also hold chamber plays inside the building on certain occasions.
Especially beautiful is its beautiful baroque roof with the many small windows once used for ventilation.
The face of johan lutter
If you look carefully on the facade of the Middle rhine Museum, you will see the face of a man whose name was johan lutter. Look carefully and you will see his eyes moving back and forth. It is said the Johan lutter was a thief, and he was brought to Koblenz for trial around the year 1536. The trial lasted for 6 months, and all the while he never spoke a word, not to proclaim his innocence nor his guilt. Finally he was brought to another square in Koblenz called "Am Plan", where he was put to the guillotine. Just before they chopped, he spoke his first words. He said "Ha! you've had enough fun with me now! But once i'm gone, put my face on the facade of the old dance hall and Koblenz will experience a huge economic boom for all years to come." Then they chopped off his head. About 200 years later, when someone was looking through old historical documents, they found his statement and decided to put his face on the buildng's facade. Immediately there was a huge economic boom! Now he watches over the square, his eyes moving back and forth for all eternity. He used to stick out his tongue!
Middle Rhine Museum
The Middle Rhine Museum is located next to the Florins Church on Florinsmarket Square. The building originally was built in 1419 but was reconstructed after the destruction by Louis XIV's troops. The lower floor used to be a market hall where fruits and vegetables were sold, and the upper floor used to be a dance hall in the Middle Ages. Today, the buildng is known as the Middle Rhine Museum, and has various exhibits on all kinds of things related to the Middle Rhine.
The "Florins Church" on Florinsmarkt Square
Just around the corner from the Deutsche Kaiser, you will find the Florinsmarkt Square, 1 of the many many beautiful squares in Koblenz. This square was not damaged by the bombing of World War II, but was rebuilt after 1689 when Louis XIV of France invaded and destroyed the city.
The Florins Church was originally built in the 12th century. It was rebuilt after being partially desroyed by the French under Louis XIV, the "Sun King", and when napolean took over the Rhineland, he turned the church into a stable for his horses. After being a stable for several years, he decided to give it back to the city as a present. being a bit smelly and dirty, the Catholics (Koblenz and the Rhineland are predominantly Catholic) decided they did not want the church back and they gave it to the Protestants. it has been a Protestant church ever since! It is 1 of the 3 main churches in the Old town, but is the only Protestant church of the three..
The Old Town
Wonderful groups of houses, artistic oriel windows and richly ornamented house fronts are the typical characteristics of the Old Town. You should certainly spare some time to stroll through the town, dropping in at some of the cosy pubs, romantic wine bars and open air cafés.
This very lovely old building dates back to 1905. It was built to serve the government as parliament building.
the jesuitenplaz is one of a number of small squares in koblenz's altstadt. these charming squares have restaurants, cafes, and shops. at the jesuitplaz is the koblenz rathaus (town hall).
- Castles and Palaces
- Historical Travel
The Ludwig Museum is located in the Deutschherrenhaus.
It's in the middle of a very romatic garden with lots of flowers.
The museum houses mostly French art.
- Road Trip
- Wine Tasting
Architecture in Koblenz
Koblenz buildings seem newer than most in Europe and are quite colourful. This church doesn't even make on the map as a tourist site, but it is pretty impressive just the same.
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Koblenz Travel Guide
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