Day 24: The oldest

Today Kaitie, Maddie, Tamila, and I went to St. Gallen. Sadly, the weather was cold and rainy.

St. Gallen was founded in the 7th century by a monk. It is the gate to the Appenzell Alps.

St. Gallen is one of the highest cities in Switzerland, even though it is in a valley. The city was built on unstable ground, so all of the buildings in the valley are built on piles, including the entire foundation of the train station!

St. Gallen is also home to the Schuetzengarten Brewery, the oldest brewery in Switzerland, as well as Wegelin & Co, the oldest bank in Switzerland. St. Gallen also has the oldest public baths in Switzerland, and is home to the oldest football club in Switzerland and continental Europe, FC St. Gallen.

Unfortunately, we were not able to see any of these. 😦

We got a little lost in trying to get to where we wanted to go, so we ended up taking a detour. First, we saw a church that is closed/abandoned.

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We then found the Stadtlounge.

The Stadtlounge is a pedestrian area of the city set up to look like a lounge. It was very interesting to see.

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There are 28 sites in St. Gallen listed as Swiss Hertiage Sites. The Abbey and its library are also UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The Abbey Library was the sole purpose of our visit.

The collection began in the 700s. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the abbey was the most important monastery in the Swiss Confederation. The hall of the library as it is now was built in 1758. All of the craftsmen for the project were from the Bodensee region.

Over the entrance to the door, is a sign that reads, “Sanatorium for the Soul.” I LOVE that. This is exactly what a library is for me.

The Abbey Library has about 170,000 works. Many of these date back to before 1000.

We got to see the oldest German translation of the Gospel!! So Cool.

Sadly, we were not allowed to take pictures or touch, so any pictures I have here of the library are from online. We also had to wear slippers over our shoes.

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After seeing the library, we went downstairs to the vaulted cellar. It contains the original architectural sculptures from the church.

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We ate lunch at the abbey cafe. I had a sandwich with lettuce, tomato, some sort of really fresh cheese, and spicy mustard. And hot chocolate. YUM.

We then walked over to see the Stiftsbezirk Kathedrale, which is part of the abbey. Unfortunately, part of the church was hidden by a giant wall.

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We also saw the St. Laurenzen Kirche.

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We then killed time before our train left, trying to find Swiss chocolate. We saw some fun things along the way. And finally found some chocolate! YUM.

Before the train ride back, we saw a train full of teams of some sort. They were hanging out the doors singing their heads off! So fun.

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We ran into some of the teams later on one of our trains. When they would stop in their town and get off, a band and tons of people were waiting there to greet them. It was really neat to see an entire town show up to welcome them home. We never were able to figure out what kind of team they were….

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Tschüs!

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