Sunday 27 February 2011: Dem Bones
A trip to Oppenheim today - another place I've never been to - and a bit of an explore turned this up. This is Michaelskapelle near St Katharine's Church and it contains the remains of 20000 people dating from the 12th century up to 1750. It's spectacularly creepy and would be one of those things that would have scared me rigid not so long ago.
St Katharine's is a lovely baroque church with some outstanding stained glass - really beautiful and well worth a look. I'd love to go back at a time when the church was properly lit, that could be amazing. heck it would be worth a visit for the 500 and 600 year old statues inside, some beautiful stonework. Awe inspiring.
But. The real find of the day was that Oppenheim sits on top of a huge network of tunnels. They've cleared out about 450 metres of them and you can take the tour. It's amazing and nuts. They reckon that they've only accessed about 2% of the tunnels and there could be up to 40 km of tunnels all told and on about 8 different levels. The tour was great, although not for those who dislike small tunnels and occasionally whacking your head off low ceilings (no harm done - they give you a safety helmet (and a rather fetching hairnet)).
So there we go, Oppenheim - it might look a bit rubbish but it's really pretty wonderful. What a great afternoon.