Trier is Germany’s oldest city founded in 16 BC as part of the Holy Roman Empire. As a favored destination of Roman emperors, the city thrived as a center of commerce after the collapse of Rome. Each summer the city pays tribute to it’s rich history by hosting a Roman Festival. What’s makes the event really come alive is the surrounding architecture.
The festival takes place near one of the bath houses created by the emperor Constantine, the Kaiserthermen. Amazing how this building is still standing after thousands of years, isn’t it?
Down on the ground is a maze of passageways. I wonder what kinds of events took place here. Unfortunately we didn’t have the opportunity to check out the coliseum, but it is only a 15 minute walk away and would have been worth it to see where all the brutal gladiator fights took place.
Being at the festival and seeing characters dressed up and acting the parts of gladiators, maidens, peasants and knights really paints a picture of what day to day life might have been like. No electricity. No running water. No internet!
But who needed internet when they had gladiator fights to attend? The metal mesh vests were very useful in helping to protect against swords, but wearing them must have been brutal. They were quite heavy!
Speaking of gladiators….
what really makes the fest a great day with the family are the many activities available for children.
So fierce, yet so cute.
Kiddos can also get their hair braided, learn how to start a fire and of course take….
Sword fighting lessons!
In the evenings the coliseum hosts a gladiator fight. We didn’t end up going, but it looks to be quite an experience.
I would recommend spending half the day exploring the city and the other half at the festival because the city itself is a real treasure. We saw the Dom, the oldest cathedral in Germany, the Leibfraunkirche(Church of our Lady) and the Kurfurstliche Palais, or Electoral Palace.
We saw some sights and also strolled along the Hauptmarkt where most of the restaurants and shops are located.
And last but not least, while visiting Trier you must get a picture in front of the Porta Nigra, or the Black Gate.
Built in the third century the gate was used for several centuries until being transformed into a church, then again back to a gate under orders by Napoleon Bonaparte. Lots of history to share when a structure is so old.
And there you have it. Another beautiful city and event in Germany. This year the festival will take place in early September and I would definitely recommend anyone to visit.
Ciao! (I’m still feeling Italiany)