We had a leisurely morning on the ship in Hamburg before boarding our bus for a tour of Lubeck approx. 90 minutes away. 

Our route took us past a few local sites

then it was onto the autobahn for the drive north.

Lubeck's old town has been declared a UNESCO world heritage site. In the Middle Ages, it was the most powerful Hanseatic town, the Queen of the Baltic. The town suffered massive damage in WWII; the Gothic town hall survived but most other buildings were rebuilt in their original style after the war. 

Our first stop was Holstentor - Holsten Gate - built between 1466-78 and once the only entrance into the city. The symbol of the town has a slight problem though . . . 

the ground settled after the gate was built and now it has a very definite tilt. Leaning tower of Lubeck, anyone? 

  A statue of the composer, Brahms. 

Lubeck is known for it's 7 church spires. 

  Double spires St Mary's on the left

We strolled across a bridge that gave a beautiful view of the spires, 

  Double spires of the Cathedral in center

including St Mary's church, the tallest double spire 

and our landmark for finding our way back to the bus if we got lost. 

My favorite part of the tour was the archway entrances 

to narrow tunnels leading to a 'Hofe' - hidden courtyard with tiny houses that were originally, in medieval times, home to the poor. 

The passageways come in all widths and heights, 

but the rule was 

they had to be at least wide enough 

that a coffin could pass through. 

Very practical (and depressing). 

The merchant class had bigger homes

situated on wider streets. 

This yellow building - and 11 buildings around it - are home to the university's music department. 

  A model of Lubeck showing the 7 spires.
Unfortunately, we were only able to see the outside of most of the buildings. 

 St Mary's Church sits behind the town hall and still has the shattered fragments of church bells embedded in the tower floor, where they fell during a bombing in 1942. 
And the devil sits on her doorstep, 

disappointed that a church rather than a bar was being built.

Hospice (Hospital) of the Holy Ghost is the best preserved medieval building of its type in Europe and was in use as a hospice up to 1970. 

St Jacob's church, 15th century, suffered only minor damage during WWII. 

St Peter's church, built in first half of 14th century

Back of the town hall on the right; Guild Hall, now a restaurant, on the left.

Front of Guild Hall undergoing restoration. 

Front of town hall, dating from 1226, 

which just happened to be directly across the street from my second favorite place in Lubeck - 

Cafe Niedergger, home of marzipan. Yummmmm.

Marzipan - almond paste, sugar and oil - is first mentioned in Lubeck in 1535. The Cafe's recipe was perfected in 1806 and the cafe still operates in the same location.