We did stop along the way which helped to break up the drive. There was tons of road construction which slowed us down. We arrived early evening to our hotel, Renaissance Hamburg, which was dog friendly. We would be staying for two nights. We stayed in the superior king room which was very roomy. Right in front the hotel was a little square with trees which was great for the dogs.
The Christmas markets were opened so we decided to do dinner there. We sure missed the Christmas markets during Covid. There were a few scattered around the city. At the market we had a bratwurst, cheesy pasta, mini calzones rolls and of course a Nutella crepe for Mario, which he loves.
The next day we walked about 10 minutes to St Nikolai church ruins. During WW2 this church was air raided and partial destroyed. It wasn’t rebuilt, so the ruins remain today. There is a museum and one can climb to the top of the bell tower. We arrived before it opened so we weren’t able to do either. From reviews it says the view from the bell tower is obstructed by window guards.
We had tickets to visit the Minature Wonderland, which is a model railway exhibits at 11am. As we walked, we took in the sights of the city. By this point it had started to rain, which was the forecast for the whole trip but we lucked out and it only rained off and on this day.
We have been trying to visit Hamburg and see the Minature Wonderland for the past year but things kept us from visiting. I had purchased the train tickets over a year ago, but they have the option to postpone the tickets to a future date which was great so we didn’t lose money. I picked Friday at 11am. Since it was raining, we decided to coat check our coats. It was 50 cent a piece and well worth it since I didn't want to wear my wet coat. As soon as we enter the exhibits, I regretted the time I picked. It was super busy and really took the excitement out of our tour. If I ever did it again I would go super early or super late to miss the crowds and field trips.
The exhibits are divided by locations around the world. Each section highlighted different countries and cities. The details on the exhibit were really amazing and we enjoyed watching the trains traveling around. The lights dimmed to give you the idea of night. From there we headed back to the hotel
The next day we left mid morning and headed towards Bremen. Bremen was 1.5 hours west of Hamburg. I have wanted to travel there the see the Bremen Town Musicians staue. Another great thing was the Christmas market was going on! We found a parking lot on the outskirts of town and walked the few minutes into city center. With it being Saturday, the markets was super busy. So I put Sissy in my coat and Trooper follow behind me and Mario behind him. I do hate bringing the dogs to crowded places but we had no choice. Trooper did amazing around the people. After finding the statue and getting yummy churros. We had a quick lunch at McDonalds where we were able to sit outside to eat.
From there we went to the car and headed towards our next destination. By visiting Bremen we headed in the opposite direction of our next adventure but I figured we were so close why not visit. From Bremen we drove about 2.5 hours southwest towards the Border memorial. I can’t remember how I learned about this memorial but probably from my favorite show, Mysteries of the Abandoned. I love watching that show and adding places to my maps that I can visit one day. I have been to a few places they have highlighted.
The memorial displays and explains the border wall which were set up and used during WW2. When this border was active the surrounding town was divided by the wall. As you walked the area there are informational signs. It was very well done and I really enjoyed my visited.
From there we drove about an hour to Wolfsburg where we would spending the night. With it getting dark so early in the winter, we didn’t explore Wolfsburg. I won’t mind revisiting the area. As we drove into town they have a huge Volkswagen plant, arenas and an outlet mall. We stayed at Courtyard Wolfsburg, which was recently built and located on a lake. It would have been nice to walk around the lake but the weather was super chilly so I only stayed outside long enough to walk the dogs.
We left early morning the next day. By staying in Wolfsburg, our commute was shorten, which is always great. Our drive home was about 5.5 hours. Since it was Sunday and trucks can’t drive on Sunday, the drive home wasn’t bad. There was tons of road construction but most of the drive there wasn't traffic. Traffic got worse the closer we got closer to home. Another great time in the books!
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A teacher who loves traveling the world.