Archive for April 11th, 2020

April 11, 2020

Cuenca, the transports!!!

Never a minute without forgetting my Cuenca, Castilla La Mancha, Kingdom of Spain especially at the moment i write this post and the world events. We have many many memorable souvenirs of our trips there, we intend to continue the tradition of going by there in the future.

I have written many posts on Cuenca and the region and the country of course. However, even if i used the car most of the time, we do take public transports. Of course, we do , we live in Europe! And Cuenca was no difference, we took the bus!!! and it was another great souvenir. Let me tell you a bit more about the transports at Cuenca

Indeed ,the fastest way to get to Cuenca is by train, especially since the inauguration of the Madrid-Levante AVE line in 2010. Originating in Madrid, the AVE departs from Atocha station and takes just under an hour to reach Cuenca. Those trains also pass through Albacete, before reaching Valencia or Alicante. From Valencia the trip to Cuenca takes just under an hour. For its part, from Alicante it takes about an hour and a half.

The Cuenca AVE Train Station is located on the outskirts; by Avenida Cerro de Estrellas s/n going out towards the N420 direction Mota del Cuervo  at about 5 kms or 3 miles; to get to the city center you can use line 1 of the urban buses.

Cuenca

The main bus terminal at calle Fermin Caballero is in city center near the train station adif (normal trains not AVE) with buses to many cities including Toledo and Madrid! This city train station is at Calle Mariano Catalina 10 . The city of Cuenca on the bus terminal here (see line 1 and 2 as they pass by trains stations) City of Cuenca on the bus terminal and lines

Other bus companies that have lines from Madrid bus station call Madrid Sur, also knonw as Méndez Álvaro station to Cuenca are Avanzabus and Aisa, their links here:

Avanzabus: Avanzabus Madrid to Cuenca

AISA: AISA Madrid to Cuenca

Cuenca

The Cuenca-Fernando Zóbel AVE station is a high-speed train station on the outskirts of the city of Cuenca, administered by Adif, and inaugurated with the inaugural trip of the Madrid-Cuenca-Albacete high-speed line that entered service with the inauguration of the Madrid-Cuenca-Albacete / Valencia section of the Madrid / Castilla-La Mancha / Valencian Community / Region of Murcia high-speed line on December 18 from 2010.

The AVE Fernando Zobel station is here: Official ADIF AVE train station

Cuenca

ADIF provides rail service to the city along with the Cuenca station, located in the center of the city, and in which the Iberian gauge trains serve, connecting Cuenca with the towns of the province, towns of the East of Toledo, towns in the province of Valencia and the city of Valencia itself to the North Station. On the southeast façade of the station, with an area of 5,400 m², is the area made up of a public space plaza, the waiting stand for taxis and the docks for buses and for buses. Line 1 of the Cuenca urban bus connects the station with the city center.

The City of Cuenca regular train station here: Official ADIF city train station Cuenca

Cuenca

The Cuenca train station is located in the heart of the city. It exclusively offers medium-distance services, both stations AVE and City, are connected by line 12 of the urban bus, so if you want to travel from one to the other you should have no problem. Thus, it is possible to reach it from Madrid in 3 hours thanks to the regional train, with a daily frequency of 5 trains in both directions. To get to the historic center of the city, the main urban bus lines are 1 and 2. From the central station you can easily walk to Cuenca’s old town, bus line 1, with a stop in front of the station, which will take you will take the Plaza Mayor in half an hour

The Urban bus lines of Cuenca are here: Cuenca Urban Bus lines

Now our experience has been with Line 1 as this one takes you from the old town Plaza Mayor on a nice circular ride thru the city and into the two train stations and the bus terminal.  The ride is very nice clean buses , friendly service and very cheap 1.20€ for single ride! The Calle Alfonso VIII is very nice with an underground tunnel ,Puente de la  Trinidad bridge, the Plaza de la Constitucion, to reach the bus station Fermin Caballero! from here you thru some residential area towards the AVE train station outside city limits, and you come back into the city passing by the train/bus station again ; the Calle Colon has nice buildings to marvel at the architecture of yesteryear, the picturesque Plaza de la Trinidad , and the Calle San Juan takes you nearby the park Huécar back into Calle Alfonso VIII which is hilly taking you back to Plaza Mayor. A very nice ride who needs the tourist bus lol! the schedule of line 1 is here: Cuenca Urban bus on line 1

Cuenca

my sons

We ,also took Line 2 for shopping on city outskirts at Centro Comercial El Mirador. This is a circular line too, and takes you from the parking of the old castle , passing under the Arco de Bezudo (an arch ,marking limits of city) the old ruin castle passing by Plaza Mayor, and you get to see the main artery Avenida Castilla La Mancha, and the Plaza de Toros (bullfight arena) another big artery with govt building is the Avenida Reyes Catolicos and later the centro comercial El Mirador shopping center , and you can continue the ride passing pretty much the same streets as above and on Line 1 back to the parking for the old castle. The schedule for line 2 is here: Cuenca Urban Bus line 2

Cuenca

my wife RIP and boys

The Centro Comercial El Mirador we went to check out Carrefour for groceries for our rental house and had a beer at Cerveceria 100 Montaditos . The webpage for the shopping center is here: Centro comercial El Mirador Cuenca

A lovely town Unesco World Heritage Site and recommended for a visit. Of course, for its size the public transports are tops, for a escapade from Madrid not even need a car and that is major from me. Hope you enjoy the transports of Cuenca, in Castilla La Mancha, Kingdom of my Spain. 

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

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April 11, 2020

The Bitburger beer at Bitburg of course!

Yes I am staying in Germany and specifically in Bitburg a bit north of Trier and further north from our home base in Konz-Oberemmel. The festival of wine there also had a round stand serving the bitburg beer and we like it too. Therefore, I look up the location and saw that was not far from our base and you know it the road warrior put the pedal to the metal and got there.

Here is a bit on the story of the Bitburg brewery and some photos of our memorable visit with an anecdote. The text below is mostly from translated German text with google lol!! Our trip to the brewery turn out the only tour was in German! so heck we were there for the beer so had to skip the history as do not speak German ok: Anyway it is still a memorable visit trip of our family and this language incidence! Hoping it gives you the full story and do come and visit, even in German !!!

Bitburg

Bitburger Brauerei Th. Simon GmbH or Bitburger Holding is base in Bitburg. The company’s flagship brand is Bitburger, a low-fermentation German lager (pils) brewed in Bitburg since 1817. The founder was Johann Peter Wallenborn and still is a family run private company as well as been one of Germany’s best known beer brand.

Bitburg

The history is as follows, and I like it.

In 1877, the brewery’s annual output was also more than 1,000 hectoliters for the first time. In 1879 the “art winery” was completed, in which the beer could be cooled with natural ice all year round. The sales area expanded with the first railway line in the region, which was opened between Trier and Cologne. Since it was then possible to brew bottom-fermented beer, the production of the top-fermented beer was discontinued because it had poor transport stability. In 1880, the Bitburger beer was also bottled for the first time and sealed with corks. In 1893, the world exhibition took place in Chicago, at which Bitburger was also represented. The brewery first produced a beer based on the Pilsen brewing method in 1883.

In 1907 Theobald Simons sons Josef and Bertrand became partners of the brewery. Two years later, the first deep well on the grounds of the Bitburger brewery was put into operation since then, the water required for brewing has been obtained from the “Triasmulde” below the city. When the railway between Erdorf and Bitburg opened in 1910, the brewery was able to expand its sales. The first truck was purchased in 1914.

A judgment of the Reichsgericht in 1913 allowed the brewery to offer the Pils under the name “Original-Simonbräu-Deutsch-Pilsener”. Due to the judgment of the Reichsgericht at that time, the term Pils was permitted in Germany as a denomination. It wasn’t until 1919 that the brewery was able to brew a full-fledged Pilsener according to a well-known recipe and start production again since the outbreak of  WWI. In 1921, a brewery laboratory was set up to test the beer for quality and durability.In order to further improve the clarification of the beer, Bertrand Simon developed the so-called “Simon-Späner” in 1928, with which the maturing beer was clarified with the help of metal shavings.  With Theobald Simon, Hanns Simon and Bert Simon, the three sons of Bertrand Simon, the fifth generation finally took over the family business in 1935. Large parts of Bitburg and the brewery were destroyed during  WWII, especially in 1944. In 1945, after the cooling system was repaired, the first brew of thin beer was prepared. Four years later, the bottles were closed with a crown cap for the first time.

This was followed in the early 1950s by the introduction of the well-known 0.33 liter Steinie reusable bottle. In 2002, the Bitburg brewing group registered the term STUBBI for the bottle shape name as a word mark. In 1958 a new brewhouse was built in the same place where Johann Peter Wallenborn founded his home brewery in 1817. In 1975 the management passed to the sixth generation of the family. At the end of the 1980s, the Schultheis brewery in Weißenthurm and the associated Coblenzer cloister brewery in Koblenz-Metternich were taken over. Both companies were continued for some time and then abandoned. Only the Kandi-Malz brand from the Schultheiss brewery has survived to this day. In 1990 an in-house experimental brewery was founded, which to this day tests new systems and processes, examines raw materials and develops and tests products. This experimental brewery is known today as Craftwerk Brewing. With the introduction of new varieties such as “Drive” or Bitburger non-alcoholic in 2004) and “Light” 1992, Bitburger became an umbrella brand. From this point on, the Bitburger brewery became Germany’s most popular draft beer brand.

In May 2005, with the launch of the “Bit Sun” product, the brand portfolio was expanded to include the “Bit” umbrella brand and an additional cyclist was introduced. In 2006 the range was expanded again with “Bit Passion”, followed in 2007 by “Bit Copa” a mixed beer drink with the taste of lime and cachaça. In addition, the “Kandi Malt” soft drink is produced. In 2010 followed with “Bitburger Cola” and “Bitburger Radler” other beer mix drinks. Both are mixed drinks that remained in the range. Three years later there was the second new edition of the alcohol-free line and two other alcohol-free products. The alcohol-free product range was further expanded by the introduction of the “Bitburger barrel shower”. 2017 was the company’s 200th anniversary. On this occasion, the limited anniversary beer “Bitburger 1817” was sold.

The brewery is in Bitburg at the locations Bitburg-North now administration and Bitburg-South the brewery with a total area of around 232,000 m², as well as five own wells with a depth of up to 300 meters and a total capacity of up to 800 m³ per hour. The brewery has a total output of around four million hectoliters of beer. There are about 900 representations in Germany and abroad. Bitburger is now sold in 60 countries and sold in around 50,000 restaurants. The main export regions are Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, Canada and the USA.

Bitburg

Some webpages to help you enjoy your visit here are

Official Bitburger beers site in English: Official Bitburger beers

Tourist office of Eifel Bitburg area on the brewery in English: Tourist office Eifel Bitburg on the brewery

Tourist office of Trier and Luxembourg region on the brewery in English: Lux Trier tourist office on Bitburger beer

There you go a nice introduction to German beers which luckily we can get here now! Hope you enjoy the tour and the beers ::) Bitburger was a trip and a memorable souvenir for my family

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

April 11, 2020

The Roman bridge at Trier!

Well here is a perfect example of what I am talking about; so much to see and so slow to write! I have been to Trier several times over the years and written many posts on the city but amazing left this unique architectural and historical gem hidden! Of course, Trier is the oldest city in Germany!

And they do have a Roman bridge! Let me tell you a bit more on it.

There is a stone Roman bridge built in 45 AD replacing an older wooden one and still the oldest bridge in Germany still working.  The Roman bridge also, call the Moselle bridge because it goes over the Moselle river in Trier is the oldest bridge in Germany as well. The oldest stilts dates from the 2C AC.

Trier

The existence of a first wooden Roman bridge over the Moselle is attested from 17 BC. It was a bridge on stilts. The first masonry bridge was built in 45 AC, a little downstream from the current location of the bridge. The upper end of the piles founding the piers is still visible at low water. The piers of the current stone bridge were laid between 144 and 152 AC. The new Roman bridge is the third erected at this location since the city’s foundation.

The piles, made of basalt blocks and blue stone, could be founded on the bottom of the river thanks to a cofferdam made of caulked sheet piles. The stacks have upstream spouts to better divide the water streams during floods and the ice during breakups. In Roman times, these massive piers supported only a simple frame in reinforced frame with tie rods, each span functioning in a way like a crutch bridge. This bridge could properly take the weight of a pavement 10 meters wide. Since, in normal times, this causeway overlooked the Moselle river by some 14 meters, it was not necessary to fold up the masts of downstream boats. Upstream of the bridge, the boats had to be restrained by hauling cables because of the strength of the current.

The bridge was mined in 1689 by the French army, but the vaults were rebuilt in 1716-1718. It was on this occasion that a crucifix and a statue of Saint Nicholas were erected on the fifth pile from the west. The western gate of the bridge was dismantled in 1806, then the eastern gate in 1869. The bridge was widened in 1931 and now includes a cantilevered pedestrian crossing. It was by this bridge, which remained intact, that on the morning of March 2, 1945 the Americans were able to reach the western districts of Trier. For some unspecified reason, the Nazis had given up blowing up this bridge.

Here is the tourist office of Trier on the Roman bridge in English: Tourist office of Trier on the Roman bridge

A nice ending indeed and so well that we enjoy it today , an architecturally and historical Roman bridge gem right in the same oldest city of Germany, Trier! Hope you have enjoy the story.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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