So here I am in Europe, No volcanic ash could stop me. After around 24 hrs in airports and airplanes, I step out of Frankfurt Hauptbahnhof. Now, from all I had read, Frankfurt is boring, A business town with little to no trace of history. I pictured Toronto or New York, but with German being spoken. There was one thing I forgot: Frankfurt is a lot older than Toronto or NYC.
So when I exit the Train Station expecting a seedy neighbourhood (I was told that it is in the Red-light District) I see this:
Maybe, it's not a sketchy area after all.
It is. Not as sketchy as Jane & Finch, or Greenpoint, Brooklyn, but just enough to make you a bit uncomfortable.
My hostel, The Frankfurt Hostel, is actually a very friendly place, and I met a few colourful characters. There was Jesse, the backpacker from Serattle who looked just like a backpacker from Seattle, Alistair, the older Brit whose teeth prove that certain stereotypes have a basis in fact, and The Afghan man who talked my ear off about the war, comparing the Americans to Genghis Khan several times, then apologized for talking politics at me and continuing to do so.
To start my tour of Frankfurt, I went up to the observation deck of the Main Tower (Named after the river Main, pronounced "mine") to scope out the city. The view was a very eclectic mix of sky scrapers and grande old buildings. Especially impressive to me was the Hauptbahnhof (Central Train Station), which looked, inside and outside, like someone had put some thought and care into it.
Afterwards I checked out some older buildings and neighbourhoods, including the Old City, Römerberg, the Old Opera, and the Cathedral
After walking around all day, I was exhausted. So, I returned to the hostel, enjoyed a big delicious local beer and got some shut-eye. The next Day I hopped on a train and left Frankfurt.
All-in-all, Frankfurt is a nice city. It might even be a good city to live in, but I don't think I would go out of my way to visit again.
Now Munich on the other hand ...