A little place called Siegen
“Home is where the heart lies” – a quote we hear all the time. I have come to realise, home is different in different circumstances. It also isn’t just one place. Home for me was and still is, being where my family is. Surrounded by those I love and who love me. Now, I have found I have a second home. Being where my husband is. Where we get to make memories, share laughs and love. It doesn’t mean my “home” has changed, I just have more than one. I thought it would be difficult to make another flat/house/apartment feel like home. And in a small way, it is tough. But I have realised I get that feeling of home whenever I am with Stewart. No matter where we are.
We have been in Siegen for a good few months now, and it is starting to be familiar and a bit more comfortable. I guess it can be called a home away from home for us now. We don’t know where we will settle one day, but for now, Siegen will be our home – for 3 years at least.
Now Siegen is quite a small town/city. Don’t get me wrong, there are smaller ones, but Siegen really is small. I also believe it isn’t commonly known. We asked a few people, Germans of course if they knew it and the majority did not. Not very comforting at first but it isn’t such a big deal.
So what is Siegen all about?
The biggest factor is the University. It has quite a great University on top of the hill with a large number of international students who attend as well. It seems to be a very scientific and engineering based university, but not just so. On a side note, even though there are a lot of students who attend, Stew and I often wonder where they all are on the weekends.
Before we were able to buy a car, we walked basically EVERYWHERE. The town isn’t very big so it is possible to walk from one side to the other. But it is big enough to tire you out completely haha. Oh, and it has ALL the hills!
Also, the weather here is crazy! It can be hot, humid, cold and rainy all within 2 hours! You never know what it is going to be like. I am personally hoping for more rain because this European heat is no joke. But enough about the weather haha.
Some cool sites to see
- Anyway, on our walking adventures to discover the town we live in, we managed to find the Oberes Schloss and Museum. A surprisingly lovely castle on a hill almost in the center of the town. I say surprisingly because to be honest I never expected to find anything like this in Siegen – my fault and lack of proper research – I humbly apologize Siegen. It has incredible gardens with beautiful flower beds and large patches of grass where we found students and families soaking up the sun. On this note, I will mention that because Siegen does not have a lake or sea, it seems this is the perfect spot for sunbathing. It has a really cool section where small concerts are held and best of all, the most epic lookout point. You can basically see the entire town from here, which gives us a great perspective of the town we will be living in for the next few years.
- Another awesome find (hard to miss really) is a rather grand church – Sankt Michael. Something that never ceases to amaze me is that every town or city we travel to has an incredible church or cathedral to gawk over. A spectacular sight to see. Simple inside and very different from what I have seen before, but beautiful in its simplicity.
- I LOVE forests! I am mad for them! And one thing Siegen has that I love is some incredible forests that we can walk in. There is one we go to often that has so many paths you could honestly walk for hours amongst the trees. It is so beautiful, so peaceful. A great place to think about things, talk about things or just wander mindlessly enjoying the view and each other. An incredible thing to witness is the families going for walks, women going for runs alone and old couples taking a stroll. No worries or cares and often at 7, 8 or 9 o clock at night. Such a sense of safety and security.
- Another wonderful park/forest we found has an awesome reindeer section! How cool is that? The Adventure Forest has some cool sections where you can learn about different plant life, bee homes, balancing beams, and a whole lot of other goodies to enjoy as you walk. It is so family friendly and great for picnics or school outings. It is like being in another world.
- On one of our weekend walks through town we discovered a rather cool wall climbing studio called Schlüsselstelle Jungs Boulderhalle & Café. It is an epic warehouse with kind of a hipster vibe about it – and the smell of pizza draws you to stay. We found out about some cool courses and it is definitely on our list of things to do soon!
- Just a few km from us is a cool little town called Netphen. We have only been there once (we have been meaning to go back) but from what we saw it is quite quaint. The reason we went there was to search for a dam you can hike around. We got a bit lost thanks to roadworks and GPS failings, but we managed to get there. It Is quite epic having a dam so close to us, nestled between hills and surrounded by trees. People go there to mountain bike, Rollerblade, run, walk and just chill around the dam. So we will definitely frequent this find more often as well!
Other than our forest walks, a weekly treat of ours is to have a Gelato. Yes, when in Europe (no matter where) Gelato is a must. We had to test a few Gelato places here in Siegen, but we found one that is quite good (not like in Italy, but close) – Eiszeit Café & Gelateria. It seems we aren’t the only ones who enjoy it because every weekend we see families at the ice cream shops getting a treat. But, we are always open to new places – our Gelato journey never ends.
Until we discover more
So that is about it… for now. We will continue to explore our new home and I am sure to find some more hidden gems. The most important thing is we are making it work and learning SO MUCH about Germany, Germans and ourselves!
I’ll keep you updated on any new epic finds and our adventures to come!