In the history of Esslingen
water has always been of great importance. Founded more than a thousand years ago the city was built at a ford of the Neckar river, which then used to run directly thru the city. Serveral bridges - one of them build in the year 1286 - show evidence of that time.
During the late 13th century the river was moved outside the city, after a new bridge had been build "on the dry country" - the Pliensau bridge is one of the oldest preserved stone bridges in Germany. Since that time a creek of the Neckar runs thru the former river bed. Several channels served during the medieval times as source for water and energy. Some whater wheels are still operating today.
Today the channels are of no practical use anymore, but this heritage lets you easily get a picture of how life has been several hundred years ago. It also gives the city its nickname "little venice".
Unfortunately, some very interesting sites are currently beeing restored, so I decided to take a panorama of a nice house built directly to one of the channels (Hammer channel). You will find several more panoramas of Esslingen at my website, some of them taken for the WWP.