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Bonjour, Guten Tag, cześc and Hello everyone

Sorry its been ages since I wrote something proper…. It’s hard to find the time when there’s so much going on!

The first part of our trip has been a whistlestop tour of Europe. Our route…

Part 1 is about:

               France – St Michel’s Mont and the Somme

               Luxembourg

               Germany – Colditz, Dresden and Berlin

Part 2 is about:

                Poland – Auswitch, Krakow,

                Lithuania – Vilneus

                Latvia – Riga

Part 3 is about:

               Estonia – Tallinn

               Finland – Helsinki and Kurjenrahka National Park.

We crossed into Russia on 6th June.

On this trip I promised myself I would learn and experience. And with the important first and second world war sites we have seen so far I am doing just that. The Somme was the site of one of the first battles of WWI. Info here… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Battle_of_the_Somme. We also visited the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing which lists over 72,000 names of soldiers who were never found. Here are some pictures of the Somme.

  

 After France we visited Luxembourg, it’s a beautiful wealthy little city all cobbled streets and old bridges. We visited the Casemates, a promontory in Luxembourg which acts as a natural defence for the city. In the 10th Century Count Siegrfried built a castle here and laid the foundations for the  city of Luxembourg. There is a network of tunnels in the Casemates which were used to defend the city many times. My photos show the outside of the Casemates and other parts of Luxembourg… Oh and cake. Mmmmm, Cake ;o)

Germany gave a different view of the wars, the Church of Our Lady in Dresden was destroyed by Allied bombs in 1945 and finally rebuilt after the Berlin Wall came down. An interesting fresco on the wall of one of the churches shows all of the leaders, and there is a pic of one portion. Here’s the church with a few other pics of pretty Dresden…

 

I was surpised to learn that it was the Russians who built the Wall after WWII causing the division of Germany and forcing Eastern Germany to be communist, splitting up communities and sometimes families. I remember when the Wall came down but being there made it all so much more relevent. Berlin now is a brilliant place, so much life and vibrancy, oh and we had a seriously cool campsite. It was the site of an old swimming pool complex – empty swimming pool, old fashioned locker rooms… Here are some pics…

 

    

After Germany we headed on to Poland, this coming soon!

Love x

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