I’d wager that the monks who founded the town of Müncheberg in 1232 would be proud of their little hamlet. For a while, Müncheberg had it a bit rough, with wars and plague epidemics throughout the subsequent centuries.
But thanks to modern medicine and no warfare for almost a century (the Soviet occupation ended more than two decades ago too), Müncheberg gets to enjoy a Renaissance of sorts. Good thing, because just about 85% of the town was destroyed during World War II in the course of only 2 days.
Along the many hiking trails in Müncheberg there are a couple of War Memorials and War Cemeteries. While it might sound a bit morbid, cemeteries and the like are considered “parks” in Germany—albeit for more quiet pursuits like reading.
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One building destroyed during the bombings was the St. Mary Parish Church, a medieval Gothic structure that was rebuilt after the war.
While I might be a sucker for history, I’m a bigger sucker for castles. So, I have to stop at the 12th century Trebnitz Castle. This place has seen plenty over the centuries—and has been a hospital and community center.
Another Schloss is the Johnsfelde Castle, where the castle church from the 13th century is the real show-stealer. Also from the pages of Müncheberg’s medieval history are the Storchenturm (Stork Tower) and the Pulverturm (Powder Tower), the latter was used as a prison.
My personal favorite is the tiny, squat stone chapel in the village of Münchehofe. Its diminutive size is all part of its rustic charm.
Müncheberg might have been founded by Cistercian monks, but it did have an active Jewish community at one time, even having its own synagogue as far back as the 18th century. The building isn’t a place of worship any longer, but there is a memorial plaque to Müncheberg’s former Jewish residents.
It’s easy to see why the monks of Müncheberg loved being here so much, the surrounding countryside in this part of Brandenburg is stunning.
I think I’m going to go find me one of the nearby lakes and chill out. :-)