After three magnificent hours cruising the Rhine Gorge, viewing medieval castles on multiple occasions throughout the journey, we arrived at Braubach, near Koblenz. High on a hill above Brauback sits Marksburg Castle. Much of the castle is well preserved and available for public viewing.
Buses carried us up the steep hill, and it was a short rocky walk from the car park. We took a guided tour, which covered many facets of medieval life, and gave us a chance to view furnishings, household implements, and weaponry and armour dating back to the 13th century, when the castle was originally built to provide protection for ruling families of the region.
The view of the Rhine from the castle ramparts was impressive, especially as the sun was going down behind the hills on the far side of the river. Our ship, the Scenic Jasper, was cruising out of Braubach and heading towards nearby Koblenz as I photographed the scene.
We ate dinner in a large dining hall in the castle, with entertainment provided by musicians and a juggler/acrobat. Mead was served and a suckling pig was marched through the diners. Large plates of meat and vegetables were brought to the tables. Flaming ‘castle ghost’ brandy complemented the meal.
The buses brought us to the ship’s new mooring in Koblenz. In the darkness across the river was the faint outline of yet another Rhine Gorge castle.