Monthly Archives: May 2011


The Wartburg is situated near Eisenach (Thuringia) and was founded in 1068 by the count of Schauenburg. In 1207 the castle became the venue of the Sängerkrieg (Minstrels’ Contest) in which Minnesänger (Walther von der Vogelweide or Wolfram von Eschenbach) took part and was treated with poetic licence in Richard Wagner’s opera Tannhäuser.

From May 1521 until March 1522, Martin Luther stayed at the castle after his excommunication by Pope Leo X and translated the New Testament into German, the first translation into a modern language.

In 1817, about 450 students came together and called for German unity. This and similar events at Wartburg during the Revolutions of 1848 are considered seminal moments in the movement for German unification.

The Landgrafenhaus (romanesque palace) is the oldest building and contains the Sängersaal (Hall of the Minstrels), which is the setting for Richard Wagners Tannhäuser.


Dunnottar Castle

Dunnotar Castle is located on a rocky hill, about 3km south of Stonehaven, Scotland. Most of the buildings are largely of the 15th–16th centuries and the castle played an important role in the scottish history, because you can overlook the shipping lanes to northern Scotland.

The lobster catcher

The lobster fishing is a large fishing industry. The lobster traps are either rectangular-shaped or half-cylinders, made from oak and  surrounded by a rope mesh. Normally, the lobster traps are sunk to the ocean bottom with weights, are baited with dead fish and are connected to each other with a rope.

The fishing smuck

I found this nice little fishing smuck in Stonehaven, Scotland.

Crathes Castle, Aberdeenshire

Crathes Castle is a 16th century castle near Banchory in Aberdeenshire and served as the ancestral seat of the Burnetts of Leys until gifted to the National Trust for Scotland (1951). In the year 1323, the land was given as a gift to the Burnett of Leys family by King Robert the Bruce. The construction of the current tower house was begun in 1553 and finished 1596 by Alexander Burnett of Leys.

Aberdeen Harbour

Through more than eight centuries, Aberdeen Harbour has an important role in the development and prosperity of North-east Scotland. In the year 1136 was the first recorded reference, when King David 1st of Scotland granted the Bishops of Aberdeen the right to levy a tithe on all ships trading at the port. The arrival of the offshore oil and gas industry in the mid 1960s resulted in a transformation into one of the most modern ports in Europe. Nowadays, Aberdeen Harbour handles around 4 million tonnes of cargo per year.



Torry is an area within the city of Aberdeen and is lying on the south bank of the River Dee. The Balnagask golf course offers panoramic city views from the east side of Torry. Furthermore, it is a good vantage point for viewing the dolphins which frequently visit the harbour mouth area.

Stirling – The Church of the Holy Rude

The Church of the Holy Rude was founded in 1129 and it is the second oldest building in the city after Stirling castle. On 29 July 1567 the infant son of Mary, Queen of Scots, was crowned James VI of Scotland here.


Stirling is clustered around a large fortress and medieval old-town beside the River Forth. The origin of the city name Stirling is uncertain, but folk etymology suggests that it originates in either a Scots or Gaelic term meaning the place of battle, struggle or strife, but other sources suggest that it originates in a Brythonic name meaning “dwelling place of Melyn“.