Gräfenhainichen — Too Bad The Elephants Are Gone

I don’t think it’ll ever be possible for Germany to cease to amaze me. Nor you, for that matter. I mean, where else can you find a town like Gräfenhainichen that’s on the European Route of Industrial Heritage (a real scenic route, I swear) alongside a 25 million year old elephant fossil?

Seems odd, right? Yet it isn’t.

What makes Gräfenhainichen worthy of its stop of Industrial Heritage is the Ferropolis Museum, a huge outdoor museum with these huge machines that are reminiscent of Transformers, like Optimus Prime.

What’s really remarkable is Gräfenhainichen appears to go flow seamlessly between the old and the new; finding a way to blend them both as the town did at the Outdoor Theater at the ruins of the 12th century Gräfenhainicher Schloß.

Waste not, want not I guess. ;-)

Other historical sites around Gräfenhainichen include the 15th century Unterer Stadtturm (a tower), its Rathaus that’s built in 1637, and its splendid Stadtkirche Sankt Marien that was also built in 1637.

I’m starting to understand how Paul Gerhardt could’ve been so inspired.

Who’s Paul Gerhardt? He was a 17th century hymn writer and theologian (Lutheran) born here in 1607. There’s a memorial chapel (and museum) dedicated to the man that’s been called the best hymn writer ever.

Another museum in town is the Old Letterpress Museum (with computers running our lives these days — you tend to forget how it used to be done); and there is also a historical blacksmith & locksmith museum.

Hey, folks might’ve worked hard — but it was such a simpler time, wasn’t it?

Talk about simple pleasures, go have some while swimming in Gräfenhainichen’s saltwater pool, or do all the hiking and cycling your two legs can handle in the Düben Heath. If your legs do get tired — no problem — go horseback riding instead.

Too bad there aren’t any elephants like there used to be. ;-)

 

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