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  Middle Rhine Valley
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Cloisters and wine

Do a foray through the centuries of the wine culture in the Rheingau: Begin your tour by the most significant cloisters of the Rheingau in one of the most impressive monuments of medieval cloister architecture in Europe. The former Cistercian's abbey Eberbach belongs certainly to this which was founded by Bernhard von Clairvaux in 1136. By the car you go about 20 minutes along the Rhine in the direction of Eltville and by the vineyards until you reach the cloister arrangement.

The extensive arrangement with its Romanesque and Early-Gothic interiors became known some years ago to a worldwide audience as a scene of the filming of Umberto Ecos "the name of the rose". However, Eberbach owes its real international standing to the monks who cultivated the wine-growing more than 700 years. In the Middle Ages cloister Eberbach conducted the most prosperous wine trading venture in the whole world. Till this day twelve historical wine presses testify in the layman refectory of the huge yields of the cloistral growing areas. The abbey museum informs you in detail about the history of the abbey and the Cistercian orders.

Further your way goes in the direction of Geisenheim to the cloister Marienthal. The cloister Marienthal is one of the oldest places of pilgrimage in Germany. Following is known about the development: In 1309 the first pilgrim came to Marienthal, knelt down before the Marien picture and asked the mother of god for help. He had lost the eyesight, nobody could help him. When he knelt down before the Marien picture, he was heard and could see. Enjoy the rest and relaxation of the meditation way which begins directly behind the minster.

The third station on your tour leads back to Ruedesheim to the abbey Saint Hildegard. It lies above Eibingen in the midst of the vineyards and offers a marvellous look at the Rhine and the Rochuskapelle. Hildegard von Bingen founded the cloister in 1165 and became the first abbess. In the Thirty Years' War the Swedes pitched into the cloister. The new-Romanic construction which we see today comes from the year 1904.

Like all Benedictines the sisters also live in Saint Hildegard according to the order rules which are more than 1400 years old and trace back to the holy Benedikt. Affected by God's love and humanity, from paschal religious joy and a sober knowledge about the people, she is unchanged in her essential statements also even today. The holy Hildegard is world-famous. In 1998 one celebrated her 900-th birthday.

Own vineyard, art dealer's shop and bookstore and goldsmiths are the economic basis for the cloister. Beside wine, 58 sisters also produce spelt products, wine jelly, liqueurs and candles.

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Frankfurt am Main
Sankt Goar
Eltville am Rhein
Cloisters and wine
Ingelheim am Rhein
Limes (latin = border)
Bad Kreuznach
Bingen am Rhein
Bad Homburg v.d.H.
Bad Schwalbach
Bad Sobernheim
Ruin Disibodenberg
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