This card with a photo of a bike was sent to me by Alexandra from Kiel, which is the capital and most populous city in the northern German state of Schleswig-Holstein, with a population of 240,832 (June 2014).
Alexandra tells me that Kiel is a bicycle city. That's one great way of keeping fit. I loved cycling too, but that was many many years ago. I wonder if I would be able to balance on a cycle now!
A little bit about Kiel. Kiel has also been one of the traditional homes of the German Navy's Baltic fleet, and continues to be a major high-tech shipbuilding centre. Located in Kiel is the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel (GEOMAR) at the University of Kiel. Kiel is an important sea transport hub, thanks to its location on the Kiel Fjord (Kieler Förde) and the busiest artificial waterway in the world, Kiel Canal (Nord-Ostsee-Kanal). A number of passenger ferries to Sweden, Norway, Russia, and other countries operate from here. Moreover, today Kiel harbour is an important port of call for cruise ships touring the Baltic Sea.
In 2005 Kiel's GDP per capita was €35,618, which is well above Germany's national average, and 159% of the European Union's average.
Within Germany and parts of Europe, the city is known for its leading handball team, THW Kiel. The city is home to the University of Kiel (established in 1665).
The name of the city is most likely derived from the wedge form of its bay (Keil in German).