Model Trains ARE cool

Trip Start Aug 30, 2008
Trip End Nov 01, 2008

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Flag of Germany  ,
Monday, September 8, 2008

About to turn in after another big day out.  Reckon we posted 5 km's walking through the CBD of Hamburg, once again Nathan prevailed with the long march and was rewarded back home with some of his favourite food...Pizza.

Half the distance travelled today was in one place, the Miniatur Wunderland - a world-famous model train and miniature exhibition, right near the town hall. It has a wow factor of 10+. This is a place you have to see to fully comprehend how 'wunderfull' it is.  Usually to get in you have to queue up for hours, in particular for the 'behind the scene tour'.  Two floors of grids, cities, mountains, rivers, oceans, scenes, chalets, boats, cars, planes and of course trains.  The attention to detail is astounding, the city of Hamburg Las Vegas, and several other cities in europe are to scale, right down to the small working plasma screen in a football stadium.  Container ships about a metre long churning through the waters, barges etc doing the same, the cars, buses and fire engines run independantly of each other and with all this going on you almost forget about the trains.

Perhaps the most amazing part is that every half hour the main lights turn to twilight using special uv lights, then to total darkness and then sunrise and back to daylight, all within around 10 minutes.  As the lights change, so do the lights in the models, the Las Vegas model was the most striking as you'd expect. Thousands of tiny individual people doing different things are everywhere, some are a bit quirky (two velicoraptors chasing some guy up a swiss hill would grab your attention would it not be for thousands of other individual scenes). I gave up looking at the detail after 2 hours, way too much to aborb...and they're building more scenes.  The control centre is exactly that, very high tech, with monitors and grids plastered across several metres of wall, it looked like mission control at NASA. My old man would be like a hog in bog if he was here. To compensate we got him a couple of souvenirs and some goodies for his post-retirement model train project.

The week-long apartment has been the ideal choice, done heaps of washing, unpacked everything so it doesn't feel like we're living in suitcases, buying groceries and eating home cooked meals, makes you feel more like we live here and not like tourists.
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