Le Chic En Rose

Diaries of an independent traveller

After our pleasant lunch in Bacharach (see here and here for my last couple of posts on the Rhine), we caught the KD ferry heading south. 

We had planned the schedule carefully as we wanted to have another chance to ride on the flagship of the KD fleet, the SS Goethe, the oldest and last remaining paddle steamer plying the River Rhine. The SS Goethe only travels from Koblenz as far as Ruedesheim so we hadn’t been able to take her earlier in the day en route up from Mainz, which is further south. However we remembered her fondly from our trip in 2011 when we took her all the way from Koblenz to Bacharach and back. There is something so special about paddle steamers – you feel you’re being transported back to a bygone era and we thoroughly enjoyed our leisurely ride down to Bingen, another enchanting town on the banks of the river.

 

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Bingen is beautifully preserved like most of the towns along the Rhine. Rich in history (settlements grew up round here prior to Roman times) it was closely associated with Saint Hildegard of Bingen, an abbess, medieval mystic and musical composer. There are many historical buildings of interest such as the nearby Maeuseturm (Mouse Tower) so called because allegedly Bishop Hatto of Mainz was eaten alive by mice here in the late 10th century arggghhhh!!!

Undaunted we set off to walk along the river and wend our way back round into the town. It was bitterly cold especially with the wind whipping up from the water! If you look closely at the photos of Monsieur and myself down by the Rhine you can just make out the Mouse Tower in the background (it is actually situated on a small island just outside Bingen).

 

 

There were plenty of information signs to give you an idea of the history and local culture.

 

We found the town centre pleasantly laid out and with pots of spring flowers in abundance. We also noticed the religious iconography on some of the buildings though it is worth noting that Bingen, like many towns along the Rhine, also had relatively large Jewish settlements from the middle ages onwards though they were often subjected to discrimination and persecution.

 

After an hour or so of wandering round we needed warming up so we made our way back down to the river and found a cafe near the quay. We had a very pleasant afternoon tea whilst waiting for the ferry to take us back to Mainz. It would have been a shame to sit indoors and not take advantage of the superb view so we braved the elements and huddled up on the outside terrace!

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Our return ferry (the same one we had taken earlier in the day up from Mainz) duly arrived right on schedule and we spent a pleasant few hours watching the scenery go by before the lights of Mainz came into view in the early evening twilight.

 

A long day out but well worth it!

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Copyright © 2019 Rosemary Thomas Le Chic En Rose. All rights reserved

9 thoughts on “Exploring the Rhine Part 3 – Afternoon Tea in Bingen

  1. margaret21 says:

    What a delightful, relaxing day. Thank you for taking us along.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Margaret – yes it was very relaxing. The Rhine is a beautiful area to visit 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I am keen to do a European river cruise but don’t know which one to choose, Rhine, Danube or Douro?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think they would all be lovely! Having said that haven’t actually done a river cruise as such – we just use the local scheduled ferries rather than go on an organised cruise. Have been to the Rhine region a few times now and also explored the Danube when we visited Budapest and Vienna. Yet to make it to Portugal! The only thing about an organised cruise would be the lack of flexibility to do your own thing. I know the Rhine ones stop at Koblenz and Rudesheim – the latter is very touristy and we preferred to visit some of the other places along the river. So I guess it’s a question of personal preference – you could combine the Rhine and Danube or go to Portugal and do the Douro which does look wonderful from photos I’ve seen (yet to visit).

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      1. That is good advice and you have set me thinking!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Will be interested to hear how you go and what you decide!

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  3. restlessjo says:

    Those Spring flowers suggest that it should be much warmer, but as always you make the best of it, Rosemay 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There was a cold snap in early May Jo- apparently it had been really warm during the Easter weekend just a couple of weeks before our trip! I have some photos I’ll share in the next post from our trip back in 2011 – that was in late April and it was really warm and quite summery!

      Liked by 1 person

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