We’ve learned it from the water ...

This line from "the beautiful miller-girl" written by Wilhelm Müller became world-famous thanks to Franz Schubert’s musical version. In this song-cycle they say: "It does not stop at day or night, it is always eager to hike". In these words there swings a lot of creative unrest, which drives us people. At the same time, these words describe the joy that hiking, maybe also "city-hiking", creates.

"You cannot go twice into the same river" said the Greek philosopher Heraklit some 2500 years ago. This sentence illustrates the water as an example of world’s constant change. And water is the condition for the development of life on our planet that is what the scientists agree on. Our state is well-equipped with the wet element. Europe’s greatest coherent system of lakes and rivers is covering the states of Berlin, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Brandenburg: It consists of thousands of lakes,
many of them are connected with each other through rivers and canals. So the Kulturland Brandenburg e.V. made a good decision to focus on the topic of water in 2007.

The City-Chaplet Berlin-Brandenburg has also dedicated its traditional city-hiking to water. Luckenwalde is successfully working on making the little creek Nuthe part of its townscape.
The thousand-year-old Jüterbog impresses with its six water towers. And with its hand pump in front of the time-honoured city hall it raised a monument for the indispensable water supply.
By rearranging the old harbour into a beautiful promenade the city Frankfurt has moved closer to the Oder. Thanks to the "city hikes"
a city-planning concept became a tourist topic. The river Spree which flows through Cottbus does not only nourish the beautiful Branitz gardens of Prince Pückler, the shores are also a treasured place of living. Today’s Brandenburg arose from three cities through which the braided Havel streamed. Eberswalde has one of the oldest artificial waterways in Germany and the Fontane-City Neuruppin – lying Brandenburg’s longest lake – is concluding the walks with its sagas, legends and myths about the lakes.

Water was, is and will be indispensable for human civilisation. Therefore we should handle it with care.

Jens-Peter Golde
Mayor of the Fontane-City Neuruppin
and Chairman of the City-Chaplet Berlin-Brandeburg

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