We started the day with a 3.5 hour bus ride back into The Netherlands to Arnhem. Arnhem is another beautiful city that has been rebuilt since WWII. It was the site of a key battle to gain a bridge over the Rhine river for the Allies. After lunch on our own, we went to the Airborne Museum to get that explained.
Then on to our last hotel for a great meal and our last class discussion time. Up early tomorrow to get to the Amsterdam airport and back to Calvin…just in time for the spring semester!
We did not have an early event today, so we slept in a bit. Then toured Bremen in groups seeing churches, statues, the square, the Schnoor (old fishing village), etc.
In the afternoon we toured the Mercedes Benz plant where they make 10+ car models. It was very interesting to see the inside of the plant. We have some pictures of the showroom and concept cars, but were not allowed to take pictures inside the plant.
We ate another traditional German dinner, including 2-foot long curry wurst. We thanked our awesome bus driver Joop. Then we toured the city at night.
We began our day Tuesday at the Brandenburg gate. Then Holocaust Memorial and followed it with the SS museum–a moving experience. We also visited “check point Charlie” (the former gate between east and west Berlin) and a remnant of the Berlin Wall called the “east side gallery.” Then we had some free time to explore Berlin. People went to museums, landmarks, concerts, games…and of course, restaurants.
Wednesday started with a four hour drive to get to the north part of Germany. We stopped in Hamburg for lunch and a look around the downtown. Then we got a harbor tour by boat of Europe’s third largest port city.
On the bus again for an hour trip to Bremen, the hotel, and the dinner.
We drove a couple hours back into Germany to get to a church service at Frauen Kirche in Dresden. The church was destroyed in WWII and left for many years as rubble by the communists. But was rebuilt in the 1990’s back to its beautiful state. After church, we ate lunch and toured the city a bit.
Another couple hour drive brought us to Leipzig where we visited St. Thomas Church and St Nicolas Church. These is where the famed German composer, musician, and conductor Johann Sebastian Bach worked and wrote much of his music. Then we ate another authentic German dinner at the Bayerischer Bahnhof restaurant.
On the bus at 8AM and after some traffic jams, we arrived for a great visit at Gentex. Gentex is headquartered and has its manufacturing in Zeeland, MI. They are the market leader in supplying advanced technology mirrors to automakers worldwide.
After a “fast food” lunch, we were on to DynaJet company–a small firm that makes power washers for industrial use.
Then on to the hotel in Landsberg am Lech where we had dinner and a class meeting time to reflect on what we have seen.