In Hamm, Germany there is an elephant named Glaselefant who is the symbol of the city. Its home is in Maximilian Park and it is almost 115 feet tall.¬† Oh, did I mention that this particular pachyderm is a giant walk-in sculpture of steel and glass? It was originally the Maximilian coalmine‚Äôs coal separation building that had been abandoned for some time. In 1981, artist and architect Horst Rellecke came up with an idea to renovate and transform the old structure into the shape of an elephant. In 1984, Glaselefant was born; it is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest animal shaped building in the world.
Inside the head there is a garden room that offers spectacular panoramic views over the park, Hamm and the Westphalian countryside. To reach this room, one can either take the stairs or the elevator, which is located in the trunk. In the garden room, there are also 10 kinetic objects on display that were designed by Rellecke. All the visitor has to do is push a button and these automatons spring into action.¬† Among them are the Palmenputzer who cleans the palm leaves and Durstige Huhn (thirsty hen) who waters the plants. ¬†Glaselefant is accented with LED lighting that not only generates a variety of colors but also has the capability of producing impressive light shows.
On a side note: At another park in Hamm called Selbach, a miniature version of Glaselefant sits at the entrance.¬† This one‚Äôs name is Elise, which comes from the first letters of ‚ÄúElefant Im Selbachparc‚Äù (Elephant in Selbach Park). She is much smaller than the one in Maximilian Park, but just as cute. She‚Äôs made of gardening wire, filled with soil and in warm weather, is covered with lovely pink and white flowers.
Families searching for low cost attractions, look no further! Come see¬†a unique attraction in the heart of Germany for peanuts! ¬†Book your cheap flight to Germany today.
Have you planned your 2011 vacation yet? As for myself, I‚Äôd like to take a trip to Munich this summer. The capital of Bavaria is a delightful city of museums, lush parks and picturesque squares. Unlike other cities such as Frankfurt, it has retained its old world feel and air of a traditional German town. The citizens of Munich are friendly, proud of their heritage and more than happy to talk with visitors. Being chatterbox that I am, spending time gabbing with the locals will be the highlight of my summer vacation in Munich.
A special treat served at barbecues during the summer in Germany is Erdbeerbowle (strawberry punch). I love punch and strawberries, so this recipe is a win!
2 quarts of washed strawberries, sliced and cored
2 lemons (washed)
Mint, sliced lemon and strawberries for garnish
¬Ω c sugar
1 bottle of dry white wine
1 bottle of sparkling white wine
Place strawberries in a large bowl and sprinkle with sugar. Zest and juice the lemons and add both to the strawberries, chill for two hours.
Drain and save juice in separate container.¬† Add the dry white wine and marinate for one hour.
Pour strawberry and wine mixture into a punch bowl or large pitcher, adding the sparkling wine and reserved juice.
Garnish with lemon slices, mint and strawberries. Serve and enjoy!
If you haven‚Äôt booked your cheap flight to Germany yet, now is the time. The cheapest flights are the ones that sell first, so book now these fares are going fast!
Are you an adventurous kind of traveler? Is Danger your middle name? Do you perform death-defying acts like it‚Äôs nothing more than pouring a glass of milk? Do you want to travel to Spain and run with the bulls? If you answered yes to any or all of the above, you are in luck!
From the 6th to the 11th of July, Pamplona, Spain will be holding its annual San Fermin Festival. The biggest event at the festival is the Running of the Bulls. The tradition began back in the 14th century as a means for butchers to get the animals to market, however, times have changed. Nowadays, rather than chase the bull through town, the bulls chase the people! This happens from the 7th through the 14th at 8:00 a.m. sharp.
You don‚Äôt have to run ahead of the bulls to enjoy this event, though. Along the outer ring, seating is provided for those who prefer being spectators over participants. You must get there early because these ringside seats go fast.
Besides the bull run, there are other events which make a trip to Pamplona worthwhile. The beginning of the festival is marked by the firing off of chupinazo (pyrotechnic rocket) at noon on July 6th. Every morning, to the delight of attending children, a parade, Gegants i Capgrossos (Giants and Big Heads) is held. In the afternoons, a bullfight begins at 6:30 and each evening ends with an impressive fireworks display. At midnight on the final evening, the San Fermin Festival ends with everyone meeting at the Townhall Plaza to sing the sad old tune, Pobre de Mi (Poor Me) by candlelight.
The events of the San Fermin Festival were the basis for Hemingway‚Äôs The Sun Also Rises, which he wrote while on vacation in Pamplona. Book a cheap flight to Spain now and start planning for the trip of a lifetime!