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Issue #138 March 1, 2019


The G-ZINE — the Germany Magazine — provides you with news, updates and happenings in and around Germany. While saving you valuable time, this e-zine prepares you and sets you up for an unforgettable Germany experience.

March 2019 Topics

In this issue . . .

  1. Must-See And -Do Events
  2. German Phrase
  3. German Quote
  4. Trip Tip
  5. Good To Know
  6. Next G-ZINE's Preview


From Marcus' Travel Desk...

Good day, my faithful Readers. How excited I am to write the March issue of the G-ZINE, as it's the month of Spring—and I know there are quite an extraordinary number of upcoming events to celebrate.

One such event to spend some time in the great outdoors is the obligatory DOM in Hamburg. Here's your chance to enjoy the amusement rides and eat some great street food for the first of the three-times-a-year event.

I understand, the beginning of March isn't without some chillier weather, so thankfully there are a number of indoor events that deserve mention in the Must See & Do Events section. Those colder (sometimes snowier) days are perfect for sitting around reading a book (grab one at the Leipzig Book Fair), or visiting museums to see the works of famous German painters—one of whom gives us this issue's German Quote of the Month.

Anselm Feuerbach was born in Speyer almost two centuries ago in 1829; going on to become a leader in the Classicist-style in Germany throughout his short life. Sadly, Herr Feuerbach died at the age of just 50, but many of his works can be found in places like the Germanisches Nationalmuseum in Nuremberg and the Hessisches Landesmuseum in Darmstadt.

As for the Trip Tip, it's off to the Hanseatic City of Lüneburg in Lower Saxony. Now, before you ask what makes Lüneburg so Trip Tip worthy, I'll tell you. The fact that it's easy enough to get to from places like Hamburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, and Schleswig-Holstein have nothing to do with it. Nope, turns out Lüneburg is chocked full of history, stunning old buildings, and great regional cuisine to make it worthy of mention in the G-ZINE.

All that's left for me to mention is the Good to Know. This is usually the hard part—coming up with ideas that might be good to know—but a friend casually mentioned "cat people shouldn't marry dog people"... and the wheels started turning. Animals!

Yes, animals would be the focus of the Good To Know. Like what kind of animals are native to Germany, and where you might find them. I'm thinking it might not be too difficult considering how much of Germany is forested, the number of cave systems, and other nature areas found throughout the country.

Fascinating stuff, I tell you, so I'll let you get on to reading all about it.


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Must-See And -Do Events


Whoo-hoo! It's still time to party Rhineland style before the days of Lent kick in on Ash Wednesday. You've got a few days of parades, costumed partygoers, lots of food and drinking, and all around revelry. You'll never experience Carnival like this anywhere (sorry, Rio!), so if you're in Germany right now, come to Cologne for a wallop of a good time. Wait, did I read somewhere almost a million bars of chocolate are up for grabs? And that's not even the half of it—so keep a lookout for special treats.

Kurt Weill Festival

For those who don't know, Kurt Weill was an early 20th century composer who married the same woman twice. No matter, his music lives on in Germany (and beyond) as an annual event in his hometown of Dessau. It's not just concerts, but also fireworks and receptions, an artist-in-residence, dinner, and film. Buy tickets for three or more events & you'll get a nice discount.

Von Burgen, Rittern und Gespenstern

Many of the Must See & Do Events here in the G-ZINE lean towards more mature tastes, but this one is just for the kids and teenagers. Let them enjoy an opportunity to learn more about the medieval period in a fun setting—even better when they can hear a ghost story or two. Get the kids really involved by letting them dress in period garb as they also learn a medieval dance and see how today's table manners differ from those back in a medieval castle. celle/veranstaltungskalender/veranstaltung/show/von-burgen-rittern-und-gespenstern-44.html

Absolute Stravinsky!

I love how a country that celebrates the works of Mozart and Beethoven find a way to welcome and celebrate the works of composer like Igor Stravinsky from Russia. Considered to be quite the influential composer of the last century, his works aren't without scandal and controversy after the opening of his ballet, Le Sacre du printemps (The Rite of Spring) back in Paris in 1913. No matter, here's a chance to listen and learn more.

Starkbierfest (Strong Beer Festival)

No one does beer like Bavaria, and even Lent can't stop the federal state from celebrating the delicious libations known as Starkbier (Strong Beer). So if you're into yummy Bavarian cuisine all the while sipping on strong beer as you listen to music—here's your chance to do it all in one place. This is beer garden culture at its finest—and it's quite popular, so best get your tickets as soon as possible.

Leipziger Buchmesse (Leipzig Book Fair)

Sure I make jokes about beer, but nothing makes me happier than sitting with a book and coffee. And it's here at the Leipzig Book Fair that you'll find a story that sparks your imagination, give you a good cry, or open whole new worlds. While reading is kind of an individual activity—instilling a love of reading is often a family affair. So Sundays are Family Day, offering up a chance for the entire family to enjoy the event.

Hamburger DOM

Said to be the largest festival of its kind in all of Northern Germany, the DOM in Hamburg is a delight for all ages. It's a family friendly affair (Wednesdays are Family Days) for discounts on the amusement rides—and you'll certainly get the chance to eat around the entire event filling yourself on currywurst, steak, doughnuts, and just about anything else you can think of. This year you'll get a chance for a medieval meal and drinks at the "Witches Village."


German Phrase of the Month

  • English: I need these pills.
  • German: Ich benötige diese Tabletten.
  • Pronounce: Ihk beh-noey-teegeh deezeh tahb-leh-ten.


German Quote of the Month

"If someone gives you so-called good advice, do the opposite; you can be sure it will be the right thing nine out of 10 times."

—Anselm Feuerbach


Trip Tip

It's days like today that fill me with joy because I'm writing the G-ZINE—particularly the Trip Tip. You see, usually when people think of Germany, it's prominent cities like Munich, Berlin, and Hamburg that get all the glory—and special places like Lüneburg often get passed over for their larger neighbors.

Lukily, since you're subscribed to the G-ZINE, you receive my insider tips. :-)

Lüneburg is easy enough to fall in love with—dotted with graceful gabled architecture (like its Rathaus (Town Hall)), and each of its villages unique onto themselves. Much of the "action," however, falls into the Old Town, although I highly suggest venturing out further.

Explore villages like Wilschenbruch, where you'll find hectare after hectare of meadows and forested areas—making it one of the best places for a quiet jogs, hikes, and bicycle rides.

Or jaunt through the Lüneburg Heath, the popular hike & bike region that spans south of town around the northeastern region of the state.

Then again, if shopping is more what you're looking for then keep a keen eye—you'll find a variety of shops along pedestrian-only lanes. And if you get tired, then slip right into a pub or restaurant for local specialties.

As with many places around Germany, it's often at one of the town's cultural events that you'll find the best street food; and Lüneburg is no different. So bring your appetite, along with your sense of adventure, for its Christmas Market during the Advent Season, or the Town Festival in June, which is also the same month as the Lunatic Festival. The latter isn't a festival highlighting anything crazier than just a Charity Music Festival, by the way.

If you're crazy about flowers then I'll mention the Lüneburg blüht auf (Lüneburg Blossoms) and Frühjahrsmarkt auf den Sülzwiesen (Spring Market) in April, and the Heideblütenfest (Heath Flower Fest) in August.

For me, I'll take a tour around an old church any day. So it's off to see the medieval Kloster Lüne, whose origins date back to the late 12th century. And who wouldn't love to visit the 14th century church of St. Michaelis—where I heard Johann Sebastian Bach went to school, not to mention it's on the scenic European Route of Brick Gothic.

Now that I think about it, the Johanniskirche is also on that scenic route. The corkscrew tower has a local legend associated with it, but I don't know how true it is. What I do know to be true is the 15th century St. Nicolai Church is yet another brick church on the scenic route—and its original steeple took over a century to be completed.

Anyone in search of a museum will have a few to visit, like the Deutsches Salzmuseum (German Salt Museum). Perfectly fitting considering salt was a large contributor to the local economy for ages. And you'll find the Ostpreußisches Landesmuseum (East Prussian Regional Museum), where you're educated on not just the history and culture of East Prussia, but its flora and fauna found throughout the region.

What have I missed? Anything? Possibly. A guided city tour will no doubt help in that situation.

So, do you now see why places like Lüneburg (or Lümborg in Low German, Lunaburgum in Latin) deserve to be highlighted and celebrated? Alright, let me ponder which other extraordinary German town I'll write about in April's G-ZINE...


Good To Know

I got issues. Serious, serious issues. Here I thought, "yeah, sure I'll write about some animals found in Germany", only to realize there are more than a handful of types of animals. Mammals, reptiles, fish, insects, and birds. Big animals. Small animals. Furry animals. Creepy animals. The madness doesn't end—and heaven please help me with this daunting task.

So, to keep things (relatively) simple, I've decided to just keep this issue's Good To Know limited to mammals. There are almost a hundred different types of mammals indigenous to Germany, but I'm not gonna list them all here (not today anyway).

Hey, did you know bats were mammals? Maybe I should lay off reading murder mysteries and start reading nature books—'cause I never realized they were.

Anyway, bats are amazing creatures found throughout Germany, but sadly much of the roughly two dozen species of bats found in the country are vulnerable, endangered, or threatened. You might not think this way if you've managed to catch bats out & about in the night in Berlin, because if you keep a keen eye—you'll see thousands upon thousands of them.

Yup, that's right, the Capital City is a haven for bat colonies. As is the Eifel Region, where you're able to join nature tours highlighting the bat's habitat in the moors and lakes. And did you know their guano (that's bat poop) is used as an organic fertilizer?

While a night out on the town looking for bats is one thing, I'd probably leave the wild boar to its own devices. And guess where you might run into one? If you said Berlin, you'd be right. Believe it or not, over the last decade (give or take) a handful of people have been injured by wild boar—and let's not even mention the one from just a few years ago who terrorized a local cemetery in Cologne.

These are not your pet pig kinda animals, are they? Just as the Eurasian Lynx isn't your typical house kitty either. This feline, while exceptionally gorgeous, is quite the predator. It's known to hunt those wild boar, as well as rabbits, mice, squirrels, and other small prey.

You'll find this beautifully coated animal in places like the Harz National Park, the Bavarian Forest, and even Saxon Switzerland. What's amazing is almost two hundred years ago the Eurasian Lynx's population was decimated in Germany—and thanks to conservation efforts it's started to make a comeback.

Although, if Germany's grey wolves have anything to say about—it might not. Let me explain further... The Eurasian Lynx makes a mighty fine meal for those grey wolves—and they'll eat them at any opportunity.

Gruesome, no doubt. But, the grey wolf (in all its glory) is a protected species here—and its residency isn't limited to just the Lusatia region any longer. Nope, the grey wolf has been seen in places like Lower Saxony—showing the stunning canine is increasing its territory. Perhaps they're just following the growing Eurasian Lynx population?

Of course there are dozens more mammal species—and this small list doesn't even scratch the surface of other wonderful creatures found within Germany's borders. So stick around for more in the future. I might find a way to mention them all.


Next G-ZINE's Preview

Short 'n sweet, here's what's coming up next in Germany — a preview of the next G-ZINE:

  • Spring Festivals Abound
  • Helmholtz Moving Forever
  • Rumbach Might Be Your Next Stop


Published by Marcus Hochstadt

Ortsstr. 52
76891 Rumbach, Germany

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