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Finding Traditional Germany in Bamberg

When traveling through Germany to study German I wanted to choose a small town to stay at to contrast my experiences at some of germany’s bigger cities. In other words, I wanted to be able to experience the REAL German lifestyle. I chose Bamberg, in the Bavaria region, because I had a friend from there, which always raved about the place. She sold Bamberg to me as a treasure chest of architecture and a living piece of history.

To get to Bamberg, I took lovely ride on the train from Frankfurt. It was a Sunday and when I arrived to my host family they where all waiting for me at home. The house was on top of a hill and was very big and traditional. As soon as I entered the main door, I will never forget all the coats hanging from the sidewall and every family member's pairs of shoes neatly organized in rows right under it. My host mother introduced everyone to me and showed me around the house. Minutes before I arrived they had been preparing a fruit cake which we all enjoyed together sitting at the main table and drinking hot tea.

My host family was just one of the many great aspects of my trip. During the next day, my host sister accompanied me to the language school. I was welcomed by the school director who was very interested in where I came from (Argentina by the way) and showed me the school and explained what was going to happen during that day and the next few days. I took the placement test and to my surprise.... I didn't do as well as I thought. This meant I still had to brush up the concepts that I had already learned; they where right. Once I started the class there where many concepts that I still had doubts about and both the grammar and speaking teachers both made sure I focused on these. They showed me tricks to be able to remember the things I was not good at and gave me extra work to take home to review. This school is where I have the most useful studying material!

After school, everyone was involved in all the activities the school organized. We had a tour around the city, visited the castle, the cathedral, the residence of the bishops in the 16th and 17th centuries, the residence after that period, the old town hall and walked along the river Regnitz. The Old Town of Bamberg is included in the UNESCO World Heritages; walking and having an everyday life within this town is just amazing.

My favorites:
  • The famous smoked beer from Bamberg drank at Schlenkerla tavern
  • Drinking the afternoon coffee next to the main walkway
  • Observing the dates carved in front of the houses representing when they where made and the name of a famous person who lived there
  • The traditional market at the main square
  • The student life found at night at the various pubs and clubs
  • Family life and walkable city

By: Connie Marianacci

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