Hiking report

Hiking from Meerbusch to Neuss!

The vacation seemed to me very long and short at the same time. And I’m already back. Long, probably because sleeping in my tent turned out to be fairly difficult in Germany, as my guess that just a thin blanket would be enough to sleep outside turned out to be horribly wrong in some nights. And I always had to be weary of constant thoughts about it. Short, because it was the first time that I travelled on foot and it was quite nice.

The plan for this vacation was made merely a couple of days before the departure. Well, to be more precise, there was no plan. I was extremely happy that there was Camino de Santiago going through Hamburg, where I happened to be at the beginning of the vacation. And it was going in the direction of Düsseldorf. In the end, I could walk up to Osnabrück and came back by train. I guess in the near future, I’ll try to walk everywhere in Europe following the Camino de Santiago.

Now, the vacation is hardly over, I already organized another hiking session, though very short and nearby this time. We walked from Meerbusch to Neuss, both of which are right next to Düsseldorf, so that we could reach Meerbusch by subway.

This time, not many people came with us, probably they are having holidays. This can be easily understood if we look at the spectrum, as most of the students were not there this time. Ph.D students and other researchers, for whom the period of time does not really matter, were still there, but apparently many of them will leave in the near future as well. I guess next week will see a very small group.

People in Meerbusch mostly do not particularly like Meerbusch, at least for expats. Well, this kind of “next-to-large-city” often does not have its fun part, because many people simply go to the large city. This was also particularly the case in Villeurbanne, where I lived before coming here, which was right next to Lyon. Still I loved my apartment, because the apartment itself was so cool. But this banlieue phenomenon is probably inevitable.

Yet, actually there was beautiful green space right next to Meerbusch, quite unexpectedly. Especially if you think of Neuss, which is for me an industrial area of Düsseldorf, it’s a surprise that it was actually quite green.

Unfortunately, it ended rather quickly and probably more than half of the trail was on asphalt. Not that I would complain because it was still comfortable, but it was definitely the hike with least nature.

I was saying beforehand that we would have a break at Jröne Meerke, which sounds like a nice low German place. On the wikipedia page it was written there’d be a beach. Unfortunately, as it turned out, not only there was no beach, but also there were too many ducks and the water was not quite clean. We were still lucky because usually when there are too many ducks it is difficult to find a place to picnic, but this time, there was a duck-free zone. Besides there was an icecream dealer car that came when we were having a break. By the way, this Jröne Meerke can be rented for even more than 100 people for a fair price to organize BBQ etc. (cf. this page). This includes water, electricity, toilet and so on. This year it’s not going to happen for me but it’s definitely something to think about for next year.

On the way to Neuss (where we took the train back to Düsseldorf), we could see that automn was arriving. It’s still a bit early, even for Germany, but in two, three weeks the hikes will definitely have a different taste.

The trail can be downloaded from this link (kml-format) or this link (gpx-format)

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