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Category: Bridges (page 1 of 8)

Vondelpark Bridge in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Bridges are awesome not least because you can come across them virtually anywhere – as majestic architectural masterpieces in large cities or as randomly strewn about planks across a creek somewhere in the middle of nowhere.  Vondelpark, Amsterdam, Netherlands

This small bridge in Amsterdam’s Vondelpark combines the aesthetic striving for perfection of culture with the beautiful surroundings of nature. Of course it’s not entirely natural, it’s still part of a park and as such quite domesticated. Nonetheless places like these are really important for a big city. They are green little retreat spaces that make you forget about urban noise and agitation.

When I was small I had a children’s book about Claude Monet called „Linnea in Monet’s Garden“. If you have children (or just love children’s books…) look it up, it’s really cute. When I came across this bridge, I felt instantly reminded of Monet’s pictures as I remembered them from the book. It’s really almost as if it was taken out of an impressionist painting.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Gravestenenbrug in Haarlem, the Netherlands

There is something about draw bridges. I think maybe I’ve been a bit taken with them ever since I lived in Greifswald, where they have an example of surpreme beauty. But this one in Haarlem in the Netherlands left an equally great impression on me. Gravestenenbrug, Haarlem, NetherlandsWe drove through Haarlem on our way back to Amsterdam from the North Sea coast in Zandvoort. Walking through the small town at night, when it was all lit up, was a treat in itself. Beautiful architecture is all around, and little cute canals gave the town its remarkable atmosphere – an even cozier, cuter version of the Dutch capital. What I liked most though was, of course, the walk down the river Spaarne that led us to this beauty of a bridge.

The sky had this intense dark night blue colour, and the reflection in the water was so clear cut that you almost wouldn’t think it was a living, moving surface. I did feel reminded of Greifswald, which made the place feel very familiar in this great sense that grants safety and security and is not in the least boring. The arms of the bridge looked like they were ready to open up any minute now, visions of sailing boats majestically gliding through and on through different canals and into the open sea crossed my mind, and I thought that maybe this is why I like draw bridges. They connect the banks while still appreciating the river’s path and its opportunity to lead us on, on to different shores far away.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Blauwbrug in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

My summer travel destination was chosen mainly for the fact that it promised to hold many, many, many bridges. And man, did it deliver!

Blauwbrug, Amsterdam, NetherlandsAmsterdam was, of course, never going to disappoint me, the fangirl of water, of rivers and canals, and of bridges. I’m afraid my Bridges on Sundays series will contain Amsterdam pictures for a long long time to come. Bear with me. I’m starting you off with one of the prettiest though.

The Blauwbrug, or Blue Bridge, is a late 19th century architectural marvel across the Amstel river. It is thus not one of the many canal bridges. The Amstel river is much wider than the average Amsterdam gracht, and thus allows for a more elaborate bridge structure. Elegant looking young business people were crossing the Blauwbrug in the drizzling rain. In its majestic grandeur the bridge differed from the more laid-back, relaxed and proverbial liberal side of the Dutch capital. I took to its beauty nonetheless. Especially since, when standing on it, you had the next gorgeous bridge in eyesight. But I’ll leave more on the Magere Brug (Skinny Bridge) for another day.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Guest Post: Lift Bridge in Karnin (Usedom), Germany

Guest post are a rare event on my blog, mainly because I am not monetized and I don’t do backlinks or anything like it. The more joyous the occasion wheh a friend wants to write about a bridge nonetheless. And possibly even more wonderful when it’s a real life friend and not a travel blogger I met on a social media channel. My friend and former flatmate Luise is an avid traveller and came to travel blogging just a little later than me. On her site Such a Lot of World to See she blogged about her trip through the Balkans, Turkey and Georgia to Azerbaijan. I’m excited she’s bringing you such an insightful post – much longer than my own usual bridge post; she sent it to me saying she „got carried away a little“. That should tell you more than enough about her curiosity and passion for the world.

This year the First World War is more present in German public discourse and consciousness than WW II – usually it is the other way round for various reasons. But anyway it is a “super memorial year”: 100 years since WW I started, 75 years since WW II started, 25 years since the Wall came down. It’s always a mix. When my parents visit me in Greifswald in the North Eastern corner of Germany where I study, we also get to see a colorful mix of old and older, traces left both by the wars and the GDR, and new, what the decreasing population in this region outside the university town do to give it some new direction.

We visit Anklam, a small town 40 kilometers from Greifswald. It was heavily destroyed in the end of the war and modestly rebuilt. When industry closed down after the reunification people started to leave and there are some problems with right wing extremists round here. So I have to admit we are somewhat surprised to see some creative projects going on here. Young people and artists built all kinds of gliders and flying devices decorating the half destroyed church – which even has a roof again – of the hometown of aviation pioneer Otto Lilienthal. It is a bright May afternoon and so we have a fantastic view from the tower all across the wide flat lands where he took his first flights.

Flying Equipment, Anklam, GermanyFar to the East we can see the enormous structure of the Karnin lift bridge which is worth a visit as the guide at the church tells us. After criss-crossing through the fields and along small alleys (some of them remarkably bumpy) we reach the harbor of Kamp where we have a fish sandwich and then start out for the bridge. We just have to walk around the corner at the pier and there it is, the huge lift bridge once enabling Berliners to reach the fancy beach resorts on the island of Usedom within two hours by train. It also gained military importance when the Army Research Center was opened in Peenemünde in the Northern part of Usedom in 1936.

I have been listening to quite some documentaries on 1914 lately, the war that was sparked on a bridge, a quite small one. Here is a bridge that after being an icon of German engineering was sacrificed by its own people at the very end of the next war. When German forces retreated they blew up all parts of the bridge except for the lift. That part was drawn up to allow for the German navy operating in the Szczecin Lagoon to escape to the Baltic Sea if necessary. And that is how we can still see it, the way it was left in the final defeat nearly 70 years ago. Eerie.

Lift Bridge, Karnin, GermanyThe 50x30m lift bridge was part of a two way railroad bridge opened in 1875. It wasn’t rebuilt, partly because of the new German-Polish border now dividing the island across the main railroad. Ever since the war people have to drive further to the North West to Wolgast, cross the bridge there and drive a long way back on the island to reach the so called Kaiserbäder (Emperor’s resorts), more or less doubling travel time from Berlin. There are actually talks of rebuilding the railroad and the bridge, we don’t have border controls between Poland and Germany anymore. This region is trying to become less of an outpost at the far edge.

Usedom, GermanyUntil then the former railroad dam is accessible by a nice sand path populated by salamanders and the waters on its sides are home to beavers while the birches that died in the rising waters hold an incredibly huge colony of the prehistoric looking cormorants.

Change is the only constant, even with a door left open by a fleeing army several decades ago.

(Photos by my mother D. Schmidt)

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Footbridge in Malbork, Poland

I have lost count of the times I’ve been to Gdansk. Yet I had only once been to Malbork, the favourite tourist day trip from my beloved city and home to the largest castle of the Order of the Teutonic Knights. My visit there was in 1993 with my family and I had hardly any memory of it. The more thrilled I was that during my last stay in Gdansk I got to visit it again. And this picture alone shows why it was worth it.

Footbridge, Malbork, PolandThe wooden footbridge crossing the river Nogat swings slightly when you cross it. But I had to get to the other side to enjoy the view of the bridge AND the castle all in one. Have you noticed how it is all red brick stone? You know I’d love it. Even with a cloudy sky I think the bright red of the castle contrasts so beautiful against the grey, and the dark colour of the bridge is so intense in its reflection in the Nogat’s steady, calm flow. Malbork Castle is an impressive place looking to intimidate the attacker – but looking at it from across the bridge today, it is mostly peaceful and pretty.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Šeher Ćehaja Bridge in Sarajevo, Bosnia & Hercegovina

My life has been rich and colourful lately, even without me travelling much (at least not internationally). I do have some exciting plans for the summer, but as of now I am revelling in the quiet excitement I find in routine. And yet every now and then I dream myself away. Away to countries that hold my heart. Away to my most recent adventure – away to Bosnia.

Seher Cehajina Bridge, Sarajevo, Bosnia & HercegovinaThe first bridge in Sarajevo across the Miljacka River that comes to mind is certainly the Latin Bridge – especially in the year of the one hundredth anniversary of the assassination of Franz Ferdinand which happened just around the corner from the pretty little Ottoman bridge. I must say, though, that I almost prefer the one in the picture above – Šeher-Ćehajina ćuprija. „Ćuprija“, by the way, is a Turkish loan word in Bosnian and means bridge (when standard Croation or Serbian would be „most“). I love the word in all its intercultural richness.

I couldn’t find out what the name of the bridge refers to or much about its history. I just know how beautiful it is to look at when you sit on a bench next to the river on a hot day in early June, eating Burek and, for desert, strawberries that are so sweet you wonder what people actually need candy for. I know how I felt looking at the city hall, to the left in the photo, which was still a brown grey-ish burnt out ruin when I last visited the city and is now restored to its old beauty (even though it can’t be entered yet). I know how full of giddy anticipation I was when I crossed it with a small crowd of people to go for dinner in the Sarajevo Brewery; and also how well-fed, deeply content and happy I was when I returned from that dinner. What can I say. It is a good place.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Bridge in Berlin (Lübars), Germany

Berlin is huge. I know, not by, what, American standards, but it is the biggest city in Germany, and even being from the second biggest in the country, it took me quite a while to get a grip on it. But the beauty of it is: There is so much to discover.

Alt Lübars (Berlin), GermanyA few weeks ago I took a metro, met a friend, took another metro and a bus to reach a rather remote area of Berlin called Lübars, a part of Reinickendorf. It is very close to the border to Brandenburg. That means that the border between the GDR and West Berlin used to be just here. Nothing to be noticed about that. It is just beautiful nature now. Fields and marsh.

The runway in the picture crosses the creek called Tegeler Fließ. Tegel is South of here, you might be familiar with the name because of the airport. It wasn’t a particularly pretty day, but I enjoyed it all the more because there weren’t many people out and about. One wouldn’t believe that you were in the capital, in this huge urban mass of skyscrapers and monuments and malls. It was peaceful.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Bridge in Međugorje, Bosnia and Hercegovina

I have previously written about Međugorje – the third largest pilgrimage site in Europe, although not recognized by the Vatican. There are places in town that I am sure hundreds of photos are taken of daily. This is probably not one of them.

Bridge, Medugorje, Bosnia and HercegovinaOn the street that passes the cathedral and leads to the massive, and I mean truly massive and humungous parking lot, a small bridge spans a dried up ditch. The houses lining the streets are the same as most other houses in any mid-sized town in Hercegovina – shops on the ground floor, apartments on the upper floors. People make a living downstairs and spend their lives upstairs. Almost all the shops in town are souvenir shops selling mainly rosaries and icons.

Međugorje has become a wealthy place because of the pilgrims. Houses have sprung up almost out of nowhere. Maybe it is due to the speed of the towns development that a lot of it looks a little – fake. Like plastic. Like you could nudge a wall and the house would just crumple down like paper mache. This is why I liked the bridge across the ditch. The stone base to the side is solid. The bridge is not old, but it is not pastel coloured or in any way trying to be glorious and shiny. This could be almost anywhere in the Balkans, whereas most of the rest of Međugorje could be anywhere at all in the world. The bridge grounded the place for me.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Bridge in Zislow, Germany

Summer hasn’t made much of an appearance in Germany this year so far. But the Saturday a few weeks back that I spent driving around the beautiful lakes in Brandenburg and Mecklenburg was one of the most glorious early summer days ever.

Zislow, GermanyI finished it by driving into Zislow, a village at the Plauer See (Lake of Plau) just across the border of Brandenburg into Mecklenburg. It was dusk, and after a sunny and hot day, clouds were coming in and spreading over the wide Northern German sky I love so much. The sun fell through them and sparkled on the water so preciously.

The bridge just made the situation a little more perfect. I have really come so far with my love for bridges that whenever I discover one, my heart beats a little faster. I marvel at every pretty photo of a bridge that I discover, and I giggle when the bridge is used as a metaphor by someone who doesn’t know what it means to me. So while by now almost any bridge will make me happy, this one did so especially. It is of a kind that I especially love – unobtrusive, not big or pompous, let alone famous, but of perfect harmony – in itself with the soft curve in which it bends across the water, but also with its surroundings. It just fits in.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

Bridge, somewhere in Bosnia & Hercegovina

This bridge is random. It doesn’t have a name. I don’t remember exactly where it was or which river it crosses. But look at this beauty: Bosnia & HercegovinaThe bridge is not even entirely in the picture, it is more like I’m on it – in fact, crossing it on a bus – taking the photo. When I went to Bosnia a few weeks ago, I travelled there on a plane for the first time. Approaching Sarajevo, the plane went lower and lower above the green hills, my heart grew wide, and as we touched ground, tears shot out of my eyes with great force. I was coming to collect part of my heart that is tied to that country. Forever. I had to leave it again when I left.

From Sarajevo I took a bus to Mostar. It took me through the landscapes of Bosnia and Hercegovina, and I couldn’t take my eyes away from what opened up for me outside of the window. It wasn’t the first time I was in awe facing the different shades of green in the hills and the emerald colours of the rivers, but I was enchanted yet again. Was it the Bosna we crossed here, or the Neretva? I don’t know. I just know there is a bond tying me to that place as strong as any bridge made from stone, steel or wood could ever be.

If you have read My Mission statement, you know why I love bridges. To me they are the most universal symbol of connection, of bringing people together and overcoming anything that may seperate us. I want to present to you pictures of bridges that I really love in places that I really love on my blog every Sunday. If you have a picture of a bridge that you would like to share with my readers as a guest post, feel free to contact me!

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