Can you travel? Porsche Platz 1 and more

   

Report by Andreas Kottschoth, CWI Webmaster

During these uncertain times, any opportunity to travel is a welcome change. So why not go to Germany over x-mas. It is an excellent opportunity to catch up with friends and family. So we went ahead and started planning our trip to our birthplace. We allotted three weeks for our trip over Christmas and New Year. I will not get into details on organizing a family vacation with four adult people, including family and friend requests during the visit.

But a couple of items were a must, if you know what I mean. The trip started with a five-hour drive to Winnipeg, the closest major airport. From here, we traveled to Toronto/Canada, Frankfurt/Germany, and our first destination, hmmm, Stuttgart. You guessed it; it is the headquarters of two of the most prestigious car Manufactures globally, Mercedes Benz and Porsche. We made our quarters in Höfingen, in a small Schlosshotel, a short driving distance from Stuttgart. The following day, we got treated with a typical German breakfast with german buns, marmalade, sandwich meat, and a boiled egg, coffee, and tea.

Energized, we tackled what every Porsche owner or automotive lover has on their bucket list. The Porsche Museum on Porsche Platz 1 in Stuttgart.
So how was THE MUSEUM? Tell us!
It was everything we expected and more, from the Porsche #1 to LeMans winners, Sally, and special editions cars. My favorite was the ….  you know I can’t pick one, but probably one of the early cars, they are simple and to the point. I will let the photos speak for themselves.

They also had a couple of driving simulators available for some quick virtual laps. I picked a Macan S, yes a Macan, fast enough for an old man LOL. After finishing our museum tour, we checked in with the Christophorus Restaurant listed in the MICHELIN Guide Germany, but the kitchen had just closed, so we opted for the Museum Bistro Boxenstopp downstairs. One museum staff suggested visiting the Porsche Dealer across the street, so we did and brought home some goodies. It is not a new Porsche, much smaller.
We ended the day with a walk on the Königstraße and enjoyed the Chistkindle atmosphere.

You may wonder how did they deal with COVID in Germany? If you are vaccinated and wearing a mask, all restaurants and events are open to the public. So no problem at all, just some minor inconvenience, no big deal.
Day two started again with a tasty breakfast in “Schloss” to bank some energy for the task ahead—the Mercedes Museum.

The saying goes, Bigger is better? The building’s height and “double helix” interior was designed to host over 1500 exhibits on 178,000 sq ft of floor space, Wow. The first exhibit is where everything started, the First Automobile – the three-wheeled Benz Patent Motor Car, model no. 1. Over the following hours, we wandered around several levels of automobile history. I am brand loyal, but the MB Museum has a couple of steps on the Porsche Museum, hands down.

I am sure there is more to see in Stuttgart, but the next stop is Berlin.
It is hard to believe, but I have never driven in an ICE highspeed Train. It is one of the fastest means of transportation in Germany, with a top speed of over 260km/h, and you relax and enjoy the view. It took us six hours. We would need 6.5h in ideal conditions (no construction, etc.) in a car.

Berlin, my hometown for over 30 years, was good to be back for a visit. Driving in the city is like riding a bike; if you know how you never lose it. Our rental car was a 2021 VW Passat Diesel Stationwagon (more about that later).
I will not recall all the things we did, but I will be mention a couple of highlights. Germany and Berlin have a museum for every occasion or item.
Flughafen Gatow is an old airfield/airport, one of the major players of the Berlin Airlift in 1948/49. The airport now hosts a large number of military aircraft throughout the years.

The Junkers Museum in Dessau shows a large variety of items such as Junkers gas-hot-water-boiler (memories from my childhood) to a complete Junkers Ju52 and monstrous engines.
Did you know that Hugo Junkers developed a diesel-powered airplane engine without using sparkplugs, valves, or carburetors and a displacement of 1,014.21 cubic inches? I didn’t.
Also, a family member restored a Trabant.

German Museum of Technology in Berlin. They have a DC-3 (C-47) hanging from the building in the memorial of the Berlin Airlift. Two floors of aviation-related exhibits, a dream for my boys. From a full-size Fiseler Stoch (low stall speed of 50 km/h (31 mph)), a Cessna, a Wreck of a Junkers Ju 87, a.k.a. “Stuka,” and we didn’t even make it to the Road Transport section. If you ever visit this museum, plan for 2-3 days to see everything.

We also did the touristy stuff besides visiting friends and family, for example, the Brandenburg Gate, the KaDeWe, Kudamm, Potsdamer Platz, or Mueggleheim tower.
We also went to a hockey game with the Berlin Icebears, the current German Champion. But, we had to get a daily covid test to get in. We got tested in the morning and were good for 24h’s. The game was OK. Only allowing 2000 spectators in the Mercedes-Benz Arena with a capacity of 14,000 didn’t help the atmosphere. The food was good, and the home team won.

And one more highlight, the Classic Remise Berlin. A classic car center with vintage cars for sale, glass garages, service. They had over 100 vehicles on display, from bright orange Lamborgini Urus to a Lancia Stratos, a Citrone DS transporter, and a DS convertible on the back. They also have a 356 Speedster for only €55,000 (US$62,500 minus the 19% German tax). This building has a museum atmosphere in an old streetcar depot, so cool.

Germany has the Autobahn, and some sections have no speed limit. Remember the Rental? We pushed it to over 200km/h (125m/h), not bad for a diesel salon station wagon.

As you can see we had a great time in Germany. I hope we have enjoyed my report and photos.

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