A couple of weeks ago, I went on a bike trip. Starting at the Rhine Falls, Europes biggest waterfall, I rode from Switzerland towards Lake Constance. For lack of a digital camera I did unfortunately not constantly take pictures of the landscape. Nevertheless there are many, many, many users on flickr who did.


The lake is located between Germany, Austria and Switzerland, about two hours by car from either Munich or Zurich. I think it is not an exaggeration to say that the countryside around Lake Constance is one of the most picturesque in Europe. About 4.5 miles of the 170-mile-long coastline of Lake Constance are located in Lindau. Appertaining to the town is a small island of the same name in which Lindau’s old town is resided. While today about 3,000 inhabitants live on the tiny island there used to live up to 6,000 people in the 1920’s! Today 25.000 people in the city of Lindau that along with the island covers an area of 20 square miles.


Since Lindau is not big nor an important strategic point, the city (as most the area around Lake Constance) has been spared by any wars. At last French militaries occupied the city without any struggle – that was a week before the WWII was over.

Because of its position at the lake, Lindau has the only light towers in Southern Germany – an elder one named “Mangturm” that went out of business in 1300 and a newer one built in 1856. Opposite to the new light tower is a lion statue – boats entering the harbour have thereby to pass through between the two.

The town was first mentioned in the year 882 but there are traces that proof first settlements by Romans from the 2nd or 3rd century. Between 1322 and 1824 there was a weekly trading traffic between Lindau and the Italian city of Milan – envoys took five days to overcome the 200 mile route by boat, horse and walking.

Since 1951 the Nobel Laureate’s Meeting takes place in the city. Count Lennart Bernadotte, a Swedish aristocrat who lived in Lindau, initiated the meeting originally as “European Meeting of Nobel Laureates”. Supported by the city and two local doctors the meeting quickly became a regular event and has been held annually ever since.

Further events that takes place every year in Lindau are the “Psychotherapist weeks Lindau” in April and the “Garden days”, an exhibition for gardeners, in May.

 » Jessica Riccò is an editor at ScienceBlogs. i-b1d38961410ec576e2bf2c7411f43df3-Jessica_45.jpg