The extensive social program will give the participants the opportunity to get to know one another other in an informal setting. During our excursions, we will explore the Saarland and the surrounding region. We will visit a UNESCO World Heritage Site as well as other highlights.

To date, the intended excursions will visit the following sites.

UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site "Völklinger Hütte" – historical ironworks located in the industrial town of Völklingen

UNESCO world Heritage "Volklingen Ironworks" (CC-BY-SA 3.0 / lokilech)

The Völklingen Ironworks is a former industrial plant which was built in 1873 by the iron and steel engineer Julius Buch and, until its blast furnaces were shut down in 1986, the site played a central role in the Saarland’s success as an industrial state. In 1994, the Völklingen Ironworks was classified as a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO. The site was the first monument of heavy industry to be awarded this status - previously, only sacred buildings, castles, fortifications or historical city centres had been awarded this honour Today, you can visit the museum located in the former industry plant and learn about the Saarland’s industrial past. Visitors can also go down deep into the dark corridors of the burden shed and climb up to the lofty heights of the blast furnace viewing-platform.

Völklingen Ironworks can be visited  free of charge every Tuesday from 3 p.m., and therefore we are planning to visit the site on Tuesday, 29th August. The expected costs for a guided tour (about 100 €) will be shared among the Summer School participants.

Estimated cost per participant: 5 €.

You can find further information about the Völklingen Hütte at (German, English and French versions available).

Karlsberg brewery, Homburg

In our view, no visit to Germany would be complete without a visit to a brewery! The Karlsberg brewery is one of the largest breweries in Germany. It was established in 1878 and is named after  the nearby hill and castle "Karlsberg". Several kinds of beers are brewed under the Karlsberg brand.

During the guided tour which is planned for Wednesday, 30th August, you will be given a brief overview of German brewery tradition as well as the opportunity to taste selected beers from the Karlsberg brewery range. The beer tasting and the dinner which follows it will take place at the tavern "Homburger Hof".

Estimated cost per participant (visit of the brewery and dinner at "Homburger Hof"): 20 €.

You can find further information about the Karlsberg brewery at (German language only).

The website of the tavern "Homburger Hof" can be found at (German language only).


Excursion to Germany's Federal Court of Justice (Karlsruhe)

The Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof – BGH) is Germany's highest civil and criminal court. The Federal Court of Justice was established on 1st October 1950. The role of the Federal Court of Justice is primarily to ensure the uniform application of law, to clarify fundamental points of law and to develop the law so that it reflects the needs of today's society. In general, it only reviews rulings of the lower courts which relate to errors of law. Lower courts in Germany follow the judicial precedent set by the Federal Court of Justice and, particularly in civil court matters, legal practice frequently looks to the rulings of the Federal Court of Justice and use them as guidance for their actions and policies.  For example, banks and insurance companies as well as landlords and divorce lawyers respond to a "ruling from Karlsruhe".

Further information on the role and organisation of the Court can be found at (English version available).


Excursion to Mettlach / Saarschleife

"Saarschleife" as seen by the "Cloef"
(Can Stock Photo / meinzahn, cropped)


Our excursion "Beauties of the Saarland" will take us to the "Saarschleife" near Mettlach. The Saarschleife – a horseshoe-shaped bend in the river Saar – is one of the Saarland's most famous landmarks. It lies just 50 kilometres from Saarbrücken, near the picturesque town of Mettlach. From Mettlach, one can take a short walk up to the Cloef, experience the 1,250 m treetop walk and enjoy the spectacular view tower overlooking the Saarschleife.

Please find further information and some impressions of the Saarschleife on the website of the Mettlach Tourist Information at (German language only).


Excursion to Trier

Trier, which used to be called Treves in English, is considered to be  the oldest town in Germany and is about 1 hour's drive from Saarbrucken.. Trier sits on the banks of the Moselle river in the west of the federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, near the border with Luxembourg and within the famous Moselle wine region.

Founded by the Celts in the late-4th century BC as Treuorum, it was later conquered by the Romans in the late-1st century BC and renamed Trevorum or Augusta Treverorum. Trier is famous for its well-preserved Roman and medieval buildings, which include

  • the Porta Nigra, the best-preserved Roman city gate north of the Alps,
  • Trier Cathedral (German: Trierer Dom or Dom St. Peter), a Roman Catholic church that dates back to Roman times and is home to the Holy Tunic, a garment with a recorded history back to the 12th century,
  • the 2nd century AD Roman bridge (Römerbrücke) across the river Moselle, the oldest bridge north of the Alps which is still crossed by traffic.

Further information and recommendations for things to visit in Trier can be found at (German, English and French versions available).