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  • Day293

    Day 294: Zollverein Coal Mine

    December 5, 2017 in Germany ⋅ ☁️ 6 °C

    Time for our next day trip, this time to the coal mine at Zollverein an hour to the north of Cologne. Walked to the station, and after another uneventful train ride we arrived in Essen where the coal mine was located.

    This was one of the largest and most productive coal mines in all of Germany, and sits in the heart of the Ruhr Valley, Germany's industrial heartland. It was set up in the late 19th century and operated for about a hundred years before exhausting the coal deposits. It's also described as one of the most beautiful coal mines in the world, mainly because a large expansion in the 1930s was accompanied by modernist buildings in the Bauhaus style.

    We wandered around the site for a couple of hours, filming various bits and pieces. A lot of the places were closed due to the winter, and we couldn't go inside most of the open buildings because we had Schnitzel with us. But regardless, it had the usual problem of a large disused industrial site - what to do with the defunct buildings? There was a large museum about life in the Ruhr which neither of us were particularly interested in - not that we could visit anyway.

    We did our best with filming, though the incessant drizzle made that a bit difficult too. Had some supermarket sandwiches for lunch before finishing off and heading back to Cologne. Spent the afternoon relaxing and working before venturing back out to the Christmas markets in the evening. Discovered that hot chocolate with rum and cream is much nicer than Gluhwein!
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