In Mainz we visited the Guttenberg museum, a homage to Guttenberg and his printing press. It was a fascinating journey through the history of printing in Europe and the impact that efficient replication and distribution of materials made. Significantly to our interests, they had a copy of Luther’s translation of the bible, and we could see the way the printing press worked. We also visited the Mainz cathedral and enjoyed seeing the markets in the town square.
We then made our way to Worms to visit St Peter’s cathedral. This was where the Diet of Worms was held, and the place where Luther famously refused to renounce his writings and as a result was ex-communicated. The church itself was awe-inspiring with its intricate and ornate decoration, there was also a wonderful model of the old church complex and, with some help from our guide books it was great to visualise where Luther would have walked and spent his time.
A short walk away from the cathedral was the Luther memorial (above). It is a complex statue with Luther standing tall in the centre and other reformers around him, protecting, defending and supporting him. It notes many different cities involved in the Reformation and some of the major events, such as the uprising in Speyer.
Our next stop was Heidelberg. Here we were able to meet Chris’ dad, and spent a few days exploring the city with him. Visiting a city like Heidelberg with someone who has lived there gives it a whole new meaning and it was fun to see all the different places that Chris’ parents used to go (like their old apartment below, the university and the local swimming pool). The old town was particularly interesting and we enjoyed walking up the hill to the Heidelberg Castle.
Heidelberg is a bustling city with lots of character. It is also very picturesque and we really enjoyed just looking around, over the river. Chris was able to get some wonderful scenery pictures, better than postcards I think!