It’s easy to feel insignificant in this big world of ours; with faceless communications via texts, internet, and other electronic devices. Gone are the days of real human interaction and the sense we are connected to something bigger than ourselves.
Not so here in Friedeburg in the East Frisian part of North Germany. I’m not saying you won’t get any mobile phone service or WiFi signal around here. Oh, Heaven forbid, NO! It’s just that there are many ancient grave hills and natural beauty found within the town and the Ostfriesland as a whole; that we’re all part of something bigger.
For more centuries than its possible to comprehend, people have lived here in the area of Friedeburg near to the North Sea. They also died here and the Stapelstein is an area of Bronze Age grave hills where B.C. man (and women) were buried.
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Other reminders of the past exist around Friedeburg and include a Bronze Age stone Sun Disk and a medieval stone trade route marker known as Oll’ Griess. The monasteries Reepsholt and Hopels (respectively) are gone.
Reepsholt was around for 600 years before being shut down in 1583. Not much remains of Hopels in the forested wooded area where it was built, but it, too, was operational for a few hundred years.
The Heimatkundliche Museum is grand altogether for examples of what Friedeburg looked like centuries ago with exhibits, maps, and pictures. It is open only from April 15 – September 30 from 3pm – 5pm Tuesdays – Saturdays and 10am – noon on Sundays.
The natural beauty of Friedeburg can be seen along the moorlands of the Lengener See and the Oak Forest. You might want to wander about in the warmer Spring/Summer months, because northern Germany does tend to be on the colder side.
One of the last hoorahs before winter sets in is the Friedeburger Festival, a 3-day affair at the end of September. It’s great fun for the whole family with music, shows, bands, and market along the main street. Come have some coffee and cakes at the Festplatz.
Oh, I’m sorry — that would be tea and cakes at the Festplatz. This is East Frisia where tea is always the drink of choice. Use some Kluntje (a rock candy) to sweeten it, or add some rum to warm the insides after the cold weather’s got you chilled.
After adding the rum, you won’t feel so insignificant — more like nice & toasty! ;-)