Our Home in Freiburg - the Perfect People Friendly City
Perfection is not to be expected in a city! The forces that create a city are diverse, often at odds, with competing interests pushing and pulling for advantages. The Principles of People Friendly Cities that we have used to evaluate cities we visit are not easy to attain, especially all of them simultaneously!
Yet, after living in Freiburg for five weeks, we found ourselves hard pressed to discover an aspect of life in this charming small city that did not meet or exceed our expectations!
To start with, our new studio apartment home, while diminutive, was very efficient, bright, and cozy - a single room plus bathroom with well equipped kitchen, dining area with a great street view, a convertible couch/bed, and all the electronics we could want, including Wifi.
Our street was very pleasant and quiet. Pictures of our building and the view from our windows are below.
Out to our street and just up the block was a food store as well as other shops and cafes. The tram stop was about a 7 minute walk and once on the tram, we could travel the whole city. The bahnhof and regional bus stand were also nearby and enabled us to explore farther afield.
We purchased 30-day RegioKarten, enabling us to freely travel on all local trams and buses as well as all regional trains and buses. Since the whole city centre was pedestrian-only, we easily and pleasantly added walking to our many of mobility options. For Freiburgers, bicycles are another option. With all of these alternatives to cars, vehicle traffic was light all over the city making walking more pleasant, the air cleaner and the noise level lower than in any city we have experienced.
Several mornings a week, we rode to the Munster Platz where the great church towers over the surrounding plaza that was filled with vendors' stalls overflowing with the bright fruits and veggies of summer. Wursts and kase (sausages and cheese) found a place here, too, along with flowers adding to the brilliance.
Here, too, the public library offered us English language media to help us keep up with the news, always a challenge when living in a non-English speaking country.
So, we spent the long days of summer exploring the city, experiencing the specific elements that made Freiburg so People Friendly, riding by RegioBahn or S-Bahn or RegioBus to the surrounding villages in the Schwarzwald or along the Rhine, hiking mountain trails through glorious green landscapes, joining fans to cheer the local fussbol club, and enjoying wonderful meals at the numerous cafes sitting outside in the warm sunshine. Life was good!
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