SJ on the Move

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Nuremberg - Day 8

Our last stop on our Odyssey through Bavaria was Nuremberg. Nuremberg has an old city with walls and towers somewhat similar to Rothenburg, although even in medieval times Nuremberg was a much larger city. For a time, it was an important city in the Holy Roman Empire.

We climbed up the hill to vist the fortress of Nuremberg, but were disappointed to find that there was not a trace of English in the whole place. The only access to most of the fortress is with a guided tour - only in German. However, we weren't too disappointed, as the fortress didn't really look all that interesting anyway.

In the centuries since, Nuremberg grew into quite an industrial metropolis, and unfortunately, in many ways the heart of Nazi Germany.

It was here that the Nazis staged their yearly rallies and announced some of their most chilling policy decisions. There is a fascinating museum that has opened up in what was supposed to be the Nazi Congress hall (it was never finished).

Here you can trace the growth of the Nazi party in Germany, as well as watch original footage of the Nazi rallies in Nuremberg. It was really interesting to see how propaganda was used to morph Hitler into a mythic figure.

The former Nazi rally grounds are now a public park. They have actually left many of the original structures, so you can walk around and even stand on the very podium where Hitler stood in front of half a million Nazis. Very creepy.


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