If you've never heard of Trier, I'll forgive you. I hadn't either until a girl I was travelling with told me she wanted to go so with our Eurail passes and backpacks in tow we went. It was one of the smaller towns I'd been to on that trip thus far and I almost instantly fell in love. It probably helped that on the journey there were the classic rolling hills that lead us to German wine country.
After finding the hostel, which had quite possibly the most beautiful exterior of any place I'd stayed in throughout all of Europe, and doing a lot of laundry we did a little research as to what to do in the town more than stop by the Moselle River or drink far too much Riesling. It wasn't a long list but it was paced out enough to not feel bored.
On our way from the hostel one of the very first things I spotted was a toy museum and jumped at the occasion. It's not everyday you can play with exhibits, right?! Plus I'd heard Germans were pretty good at making toys back in the day. Admittedly I was expecting it to be creepy but fun and probably not a far cry from my home base of Almonte in Canada where puppetry is big so I was a bit more prepared than I would've been otherwise but being the only adults there without children made it a little more fun as I could be both nostalgic and as childish as I wanted to be.
The next item on my list while I was there brought me back to a time when I was learning a lot about communism. Or rather Marxism. As Karl Marx was originally from Trier, along with a host of other famous persons I had only vaguely heard of. His house was a still-standing building which has been turned into a museum dedicated to his life and work as well as the beginnings of communism. It was nice to see the beginnings of a man whose work people based horrible doings on, although he never once stated he believed communism would be good in practice.
It didn't hurt that his home was next to Roman Ruins, either. Playing hide-and-go-seek in them was more fun than it ought to have been and a definite recommendation. Another is to carefully perch yourself on the brick windows on the upper level of Porta Nigra to have spectacular views. If you have better weather than I did, maybe even of the rolling green hills too. It also happens to be a World UNESCO Site that you could check off your list. It's totally worth seeing Porta this way.
While traipsing around Trier there was an Elephant Parade. Sadly, not with real Elephants instead with beautiful works of art on large sculptures for people to buy as a way to donate to animal welfare. Of course, I hardly knew that at the time and was just in delight that one of my favourite animals were so prominently featured in wine country. So after being given the kindest service in Germany with a lot of free pretzels and wine from a restaurant owner (sadly I can't remember the place but I wish I had) I walked the square in a complete daze as I looked over the castle that was almost in an alcove. Unfortunately while I was there it was closed but a beautiful sight anyway and I know that if I ever get the chance I'll revisit Trier.
With one last thing to do, I walked along the Mozelle River. It wasn't the clearest water I'd ever seen but it was the most tranquil spot I had been on so far and there are times that I am so grateful that I had that time to just breath and be near nature.
Aside from this I had hugely oversized and disgustingly unhealthy crepes and ice-cream while I looked over the city as my time there ended and I planned for my next spot.
All this makes Trier a must-do for Southern Germany, especially if you're on route to Luxembourg.