Monday, June 1, 2009

Italy, Austria & Germany for our Honeymoon- Germany

Germany is probably one of my favorite countries that I've ever been to, it has everything! It has the beautiful scenery, fun festivals, amazing food & so many cool things to see. The first city we stopped in, in Germany was the city of Fussen. Most would know it for the Neuschwanstein castle that Disney designed their infamous castle after. Fussen is pretty close to the Austrian border so you still get the beautiful rolling green hills and mountains. I don't think I've been to a castle before, let alone one this big and historical. We got there, parked and walked around the property. It is a bit of a hike from where you park to the actual castle so we just took our time checking everything out. You have to take a tour with a group and they do it in all of the major languages. Unfortunately you are not aloud to take pictures inside the castle. We waited for about 15 minutes and then took the tour. This castle was so extravagant! Gold everywhere, amazing paintings. The sky was the the limit for Kind Ludwig II.

After touring the castle we went to find the walking path that goes behind the castle and travels along the running water system and the stream. Apparently this was one of the very first places that ever had running water and was able to find a way to make it work. I don't think many people knew of this path because we saw one other couple along the way (or they did not want to brave it). Christian had been there before so he knew where to go but had not walked the path behind the castle before. Along the way, there was a gorgeous view of another castle and the lake. Then you are able to walk over one of the largest walk bridges I have ever seen. Christian drug me out on it and I was petrified! I am scared of heights so you tell me enthusiasm in the picture he took of me on the bridge. You can see in the next picture how high we were.

We made our way back down to ground level and found the path behind the castle. I assumed it would just be a regular walking path, not so much. It was really cool because it followed the where the waterfall fell to create the creek, which is where they got the water from. It was a pretty narrow path and then later was just a metal kinda bridge that was attached to the rocks. If you do this, defiantly wear tennis shoes and not flip flops like I did ;) It was not an easy hike but it was one of the coolest walks I've ever been on. You pretty much start out at the top of a mountain and then it brings you out behind the castle.

We had a long day and had not booked a hotel for Fussen. We found a cute little hotel called Hotel Kurcafe. It was very nice and had a restaurant in it. We were pooped after the long day and just ate the restaurant there. This was the first real German meal we had there and it was so freaking good! Their meals are usually hearty consisting of some meat, potatoes, slaw/cabbage & of course a beer.

The next morning we got up and headed towards Landshut. It is a very small town that Christian's company is based out of. There are some guys that have come over to the states before and Christian trained over there when he first started so we went to their office. I had of course never been there and it was neat to see all of the things they are doing at the German office. On our way there we were kinda tired and saw what we thought was a man just standing there for the construction. We were both like, wow, he's standing there a long time! As we drive by him, we realized it was a fake person and busted out laughing, opps.

After having lunch with some of his co-workers, he headed to our hotel. This is the hotel that everyone at his company stays at when they come to Germany so we were treated well. It was a hotel in the heart of Landshut called Hotel Goldene Sonne. It was nice because it was close to everything and had a bar & restaurant in it. Since the town was so small, you could practically walk to anything. The only odd thing was that it only had two twin beds in all of their rooms, which was very common over there b/c they would usually just push them together for you. But they were mounted to the wall, so we couldn't even push them together. We only spent two nights there though and passed out both of them anyways ;)

We decided to go meet his co-workers at a festival that was going on. We were there during Maifest so there were festivals every where! This was on a Wednesday night and it was packed with kids, adults, everyone. Christian had talked before about the steklfish (fish on a stick) before we went over there and he was so excited when he found it, lol. Below is his co-worker & him holding one. It actually was pretty good. Later, practically half of his co-workers came to meet us at the festival. They were feeding us lots and lots of beer & liquor. I don't think I've been that bad since my twenty-first birthday, lol. Needless to say, we had a lot of fun that night ;)

The next morning we woke up and drove to Erdinger for the day. Christian's Grandmother is from there so we wanted to at least go see what it was like. We needed to put something into our stomachs so we found the local pub and grabbed some food. Again, a very hearty meal but it was so freaking good! I was all about the schnitzel there, it was so good and not like what you get back in the states. It was a small little town, so we just walked around and looked at the little shops & places along the way. Eventually headed back to the hotel and headed to Munich the next morning.

We arrived to Munich in the late afternoon and it was pretty busy. Christian travels a lot for work so we used his hotel points just to stay at the Holiday Inn in Munich. It wasn't in the downtown area but within walking distance of it. Downtown had so much in it. There was shopping, tons of bars & restaurants. That night we had dinner at the Augustiner Beer Hall. It was a huge beer hall that Adolf Hitler used to hang out with, that was kinda creepy. We obviously had some beer and brats. Again, food was awesome! You have to kinda not be scared of germs there. They had a big pretzel bin & pots of mustard. When a table was done with it or did not eat all of the pretzels, it would just go to the next table. Guess that's typical there.

The next morning we went to the BMW museum, this place is anyone's heaven if they are into motorcycles, cars or just engines in general. Christian had been to the old one when he lived there before but since then, they had built a newer & bigger one. They had everything BMW there; the formula one cars, old cars, motorcycles, possible future cars, etc, etc. The architecture was very neat in the building as well. It was really neat to see how the old cars & motorcycles used to be and the way everything has progressed throughout many, many years.

Christian and I had discussed going to a concentration camp or not. In a way, we did not feel right going and were kinda sickened by it but it is also part of our history. We decided to go to the most famous one called Dachau that was just outside of Munich. We did not take many pictures at all there because we felt it was disrespectful. But then we had people next to us taking pictures inside the crematories and everything. There was definitely a saddening feeling there. Just looking around was so sickening of knowing what had happened there. There were not tours there but signs up all over the place stating facts. Things like this was where they were told they were going to take a shower & didn't know if they were or were getting gassed. Or showing places that was a firing wall. Etc, etc. In one of the old buildings they have a museum and a theater. We decided not to watch the history thing in the theater because everyone was saw walking out had tears coming down their face. It was definitely a learning yet emotional place to visit.

To lighten the mood after Dachau, we drove back to Munich and went to the famous English garden. I wish we had a park like this! It was absolutely beautiful and just looked so fun. It was a beautiful day and so many people were there. They were playing with their dog, just hanging out, playing some sort of game or just having some beers. It was like being in a forest & just continued on and on. We walked around for hours and then made our way to the beer garden. The famous Chinese Turm is there along with huge almost cafeteria like restaurant where you just go through and grab what you want and then go back out & sit in the garden. Again, since it was during Maifest, it was a way more busy but it was a blast! There was a little band playing that was sat and watched for a while and of course the beers kept coming. Christian found the steklfish again so we had some of those. We hung out there for a while and then went to do some more sight seeing.
Our last day in Munich we did some more sight seeing. We walked around the center again and found the original Hofbrauhaus. There are a couple of these in the states, we have one back home about twenty minutes away from us in Newport, Kentucky so we had to go check it out. To be honest, it was so busy because of Maifest, we didn't stay here long. There were a lot of tourists there and it was very packed. But it was still cool to see it and say that we've been there ;)

We then continued onto the local market, it is always packed on the weekends. White asparagus was in season so you found it everywhere so they used it for so many things. The asparagus soup was my favorite ;) We walked around for a hour or so just looking at all the things they had there. One thing that I was not happy to see was a horse butcher =( They even had a picture of a horse in the logo, ugh.

Later that day we got up and drove to Frankfort, where we were flying out of. There was not a lot to do there and we were pretty tired so we had booked another Holiday Inn with points. Since Frankfort is a big hub, the Holiday Inn there was very nice and close to the airport. Overall, Germany is one of the coolest countries that I have even been to. I could so live there! It has beautiful scenery, amazing food, fantastic beer & the people are so nice. Maybe it's because they drink a lot ;) j/k. It is such a fun country and has so much to offer, we can not wait to go back!

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