Our trip to the Saale-Unstrut region started with bad weather. Again. We were afraid that our big plans for hiking to castles and walking through Naumburg would be stopped by the rain once more—those of you who participated in the wine hiking and tasting in Radebeul will know what I am talking about! But worrying too early is never a good idea. So we waited for our bus, driven by Klaus, who was always there when we needed him—more on that later. The ride to Naumburg was pretty quiet because everybody tried to catch up some sleep from the relatively short night before. For Sarah and I, the ride was spent constantly checking the weather. How would it be in Naumburg? We couldn’t find a clear answer. As we arrived at our youth hostel the weather looked ok for the day, but first we needed to check out the rooms and make the beds. Afterwards Klaus drove us to the city center and we had some time to explore Naumburg on our own. Some of us followed our stomachs, which led us to a nice Italian restaurant. With a good meal inside us we were totally ready and excited for a guided tour through the city. However, it soon began to rain; and after waiting half an hour in the rain the motivation sank. To add to our dampened spirits, the guide did not come. Later on we found out that he wasn’t even in the city and knew nothing about our tour. But fortunately Sarah and I are improvising professionals and so we just decided to visit the famous cathedral of Naumburg. Afterwards our first hike was on the list. Klaus drove us into the forest from where we wanted to go to the Rudelsburg and Castle Saaleck. And as if Petrus knew we would come, the rain stopped and we remained dry. In Castle Saaleck we climbed on a tower and enjoyed a beautiful view over the Saale-Unstrut region. Then it was time for lunch, nice conversations and our beds.
The next day started with sunshine and a surprisingly good breakfast. After that we drove to Blütengrund, where some of us took a bicycle to Freyburg, while the rest of us planned to take a steamboat. Well that too didn’t work out the way we wanted it too. Because of low water the boat couldn’t sail and so we took a nice walk along the Saale and Klaus was there for us once again to pick us up. The highlight of the day was a guided tour through the Rotkäppchen winery, where famous sparkling wine is produced. There we learned a lot about the production of sparkling wine and were allowed to taste some delicious sorts. Donjon Wilhelm, a big tower with a fantastic view over Thuringia and Saxony-Anhalt, was our last destination before we entered the bus again, picked up the bicycle group and drove back home to Dresden. It was a really nice excursion with great people, and even though some things went wrong, we all had fun and made the best of it.
(Text: H. Leonhardt)