Let’s just say for the sake of this conversation (webpage?) that you’ve got an extra day in Leipzig and you don’t know what to do with yourself. It’s not as if the city won’t have something for you, but suppose you want to see some village life? I’d be the first one to tell you to head over to Machern.
What? It’s not like it’s far, only about 20 kilometers so it won’t take you long to get there.
And if you’re here in September you might not even think you’re in Germany at all. Machern hosts an annual Highland Games; complete with bagpipes, hammer throwing contests, and rugged guys in skirts. I mean kilts. ;-)
For the rest of the time Machern doesn’t look like the Scottish Highlands, the town is dominated by its castles.
The smaller Schloss Machern is a graceful 16th century castle, now used for weddings and that sort of thing. And from the looks of it you’d never guess that Burg Püchau is over a thousand years old. Hmm, come 2024 and it will actually be 1100 years old.
I digress, Burg Püchau stole my heart (call me a romantic, but I am a sucker for a medieval castle). It’s sprawling lawns, ivy draped walls, and Gothic windows kind of did that to me.
You might prefer to have a nosh in its restaurant or walk its Zen Maze — I’ll be outside pretending to “lord” over the manor and its English Gardens.
One of the biggest things to see here is the Castle Park, full of sculptures and “temples” (one to Apollo’s granddaughter, Hygieia), and even the ruins of a medieval castle. Cool… another one. ;-)
You can even go sightseeing underground in Machern. The Stasi Bunkers Lübschützer Teiche are from the days of when the area was under Soviet control. The only drawback is its only open once a month.
What else can I tell you about Machern? Oh yes, the Pfauenhof Püchau that’s got all the peacocks.
They’re loud birds, so how about a game of golf if you want something a tad more… ah, quiet? There are 18 holes calling your name; and if you’re into the whole tennis thing, you can do that too.
Though I’m pretty sure some of you might rather try to find those guys in kilts. ;-)