Many great cities can’t be reached by ocean liners. River cruises are another story. You can drive to these cities and towns. While the Coronavirus keeps us at home, let’s ponder some of those great cities as future destinations.
- Frankfurt, Germany. Also known as Mein-hattan because of all the architecturally significant skyscrapers. Great during Christmas market season, yet you also have the apple wine season.
- Mainz, Germany. Another great Christmas market town. It’s also the place where Gutenberg invented the printing press and moveable type in 1439. It’s got a museum. Plenty of good German sausages and beer too.
- Wiesbaden, Germany. It’s across the river from Mainz, also in the Frankfurt area. Lots of grand homes, high end shopping and a big opera house. It’s got an 18th century casino with a restaurant that makes you feel you walked into a James Bond movie. (The part where they wear tuxedos.)
- Baden Baden, Germany. What’s that they said about New York? So nice, they named it twice? An attractive, upscale town with the famous thermal baths in their spa. It’s another good Christmas market stop.
- Cologne, Germany. It’s the home of the famous Cathedral. It’s said to be the most visited landmark in Germany. Started in 1248, the builders took a break for about 300 years, eventually finishing in 1880. Great Christmas market too. You are sensing a theme here.
- Emilion, France. I’m a wine fan. It’s been said no wine, however grand, tastes as good as a humble wine in a sidewalk café overlooking a cobblestone street on a sunny day in the village of St. Emilion. I’ve heard it called the St. Emilion effect. Their wine is a Bordeaux based on the merlot grape.
- Beaune, France. It’s one of the major wine cities of Burgundy. Cellars to tour. There’s the Hospices du Beaune, a public hospital built with donations to the Church around the Middle Ages. Great food and wine everywhere.
- Dijon, France. The other big name town in Burgundy. Three guesses what famous condiment comes from Dijon. The city is big on the wine route.
- Bordeaux, France. The port city famous for the wine of the same name. Great cafes. Great museum about… you guessed it…wine.
- Lyon, France. The French are famous for their food. Lyon is considered one of the major gastronomic capitals outside Paris. 20 Michelin starred restaurants as of 2019. I can never understand how fast food could gain a food hold in France when the average corner bistro served what we consider fine food in the US.
You probably have favorite cities too. What are they?
Cover photo Cologne cathedral