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Strasbourg, France

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While we were visiting Linda's sisters in July 1993, I felt compelled to take a train over to Strasbourg, since we were relatively close. I had been there once before in 1987, on a quick coach tour, and we didn't even stop, so I have wanted to go back ever since. I made the most of this opportunity, and spent the day walking around the cathedral, climbing the bell tower, riding the canal boats, and admiring the half-timber houses in "Petite France." Strasbourg Cathedral from a distance

The view of 
Strasbourg's roof-tops from the cathedral tower.This is the impressive view of Strasbourg from the roof of the cathedral. Click on the picture for a larger view.

Strasbourg is such an attractive city, that you could easily think that you are harmlessly lost in a fantasyland of appealing Old World sights. The river canals, the Alsatian-styled buildings, the cobbled streets, the well-maintained craftsmanship that is evident everywhere you look--Oh, the atmosphere! Strasbourg is a great city of culture, architecture, and European relations. Throughout history, it has been fought over between France and Germany many times. It is where Johan Gutenberg and Albert Schweitzer once lived, and I was easily susceptible to its charms. Taking an early Sunday morning train over from Karlsruhe, Germany, I was not even approached by a customs officer. Once I was off the train, I walked all over the center of town, and went for a canal boat ride, through the locks and the densely crowded quarter called, Petite France, a fairy tale-like section full of attractive half-timber houses, with lots of whimsical features and accents. Strasbourg's canals stem from the Ill River, which is an offshoot of the Rhine River, just two miles away, which is the border between France and Germany.

As I mentioned in the Paris section, I love to climb towers. I took the time to climb to the roof of Strasbourg Cathedral, with its high, single bell tower, and was rewarded by the famous view of the buildings below. I have also climbed Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, St. Paul's Cathedral in London, Durham Cathedral in England, two medieval towers in Prague, Czech., a medieval tower in Rothenburg, Germany, (and several castles and smaller churches) and have rode the elevator to the top of Eiffel Tower, Westminster Cathedral, and the bell tower in St. Mark's Square, Venice. Just for the fun of it, and to take pictures.

This daytrip to Strasbourg was about as satisfying as it could possibly be! I can't say enough about its appealing atmosphere, except that I wish I could spend more time there and see everything--including more of the surrounding region.

Click here for a map of France