Only one more week left in Germany and I am not wanting to go home! My family left yesterday and is flying home as I type right now. I did not get much internet access while in hotels so I plan to catch you up now!
The rest of Paris was an unbelievable thing! We went to see the Louvre with a private tour guide! I imagined the Mona Lisa as much bigger than it really was. But the things we saw where just breathtaking! We then took the rest of day two to see the gardens at the Louvre and then wander around on our own. That night, we went back to the Eiffel Tower to see it lit up at night and the light show. The third day, we then saw the Palace of Versailles. The Hall of Mirrors was my favorite room and the gardens just seemed to go on for forever! We also bought some great macaroons and they were delicious!
We then flew back to Germany that afternoon and drove to Bonn. Here, we stayed in a castle. The castle was so neat and it was cool to look out a window and see another wing of the castle. That night, we ate at the restaurant in the castle and it was an outstanding meal! I ordered wolf fish and it was sooo good! We then got to wander around the castle the next morning before we left.
That morning after touring the castle, we drove on to Cologne. Our reason for stopping here was the Cologne Dom and my oh my it was so big! I knew it was the largest church in Germany but I was not expecting just how big it really was. The architecture on the outside was just magnificent! The inside was just as beautiful too but my favorite part was the outside! We then ate lunch in a restaraunt across the street from the Dom. Our next and last stop in Cologne was the chocolate museum! It showed how and where chocolate is grown and how it is processed. We got to see a real production line and watch people make chocolate in front of us! We left the gift shop with too much chocolate that day!
That afternoon we headed to Muden. Our hotel here was also a winery and it was right on the Mosel River. Behind the hotel we could see the grape vines and it was such a neat sight. We ate out on the patio that night and tried the wine from their vineyards.
The next morning, we drove to the castle Burg Eltz. We decided to park closer and take the "short" walk to the castle. This walk was supposed to take ten minutes and it ended up more like 30 minutes down and 40 minutes up because of the steep grade of the hill. It was a hard to walk down at some moments because of how steep it really was. The castle itself was settled in the middle of all this huge hills and had a moat around it. The tour guide was very knowledgeable and his English was understandable!
We then left Burg Eltz to head to Liewen which was on the Mosel River as well. We stopped at St. Urbans Hof winery for a wine tasting. Most of their grapes surrounded us while we were in Liewen and each wine we tasted was a Riesling. I was so surprised at how different each Riesling tasted! Each one had a different scent and aftertaste and they were all so good that we bought 7 bottles to bring home!
Then we drove to Trier and checked into our hotel for the night. We saw the Trier museum and the outside of Porta Nigra that night and ate dinner at Krocodile. I ordered schnitzel caprese and it was schnitzel covered in mozzarella and tomatoes and it was excellent! The next day, we took a tram/train tour of the city. We got to see the old Roman baths, the city walls, and churches. We then went into Porta Nigra and walked around the oldest city gate.
After Trier, we drove to Stuttgart and toured the Porsche museum. Oh my goodness I have never seen so many Porsches in one place in my life! It was amazing to learn the history of how Porsche began and the history of the racing of some of the cars. My favorite was the Pink Pig which was a race car that looked like a pig so much that they painted it pink on race day so that it could truly be called the Pink Pig. We then continued walking around downtown Stuttgart and saw the old and new palaces and ate a fantastic dinner.
The next day, we starting driving through the Black Forest. It is just so beautiful and unthinkable how big it really is. Halfway through, we stopped in Triberg. This town is known for its cuckoo clocks and boy were there tons of them! I did not end up buying a clock, since I got one during my high school trip, but I did end up getting a watch while there! We then ate lunch at an Italian restaurant and then went to see the largest waterfall in Germany.
After that, we continued driving on to Fussen. On the way we saw cows that actually had bells so dad pulled off the road so I could take pictures of them! They were so cute when their bells rang! We then arrived in Hohenschwangau at our hotel and it was so cool. From our hotel balcony, we could see the Hohenschwangau Palace and from our dinner table and breakfast table in the restaurant at the hotel, we could see Schloss Neuschwanstein! These castles are just so beautiful! It really is a fairy tale experience and it was just so awesome to see for a second time and with my family.
After touring both castles the next day and wandering around the small town we left for Munich. Once in Munich, it took us quite a while to find the hotel. After getting there, we rested for a while and then made our way to the Marienplatz. Once there, David came to meet us and go to dinner with us! It was so good to see him after so many months of him being in Germany. We found our way to the Hofbrauhaus and we all enjoyed a good meal and great liter beers! Later that night David and I found our way to an Austrailian bar and I enjoyed a Snake Bite beer while we caught up.
Yesterday, the family and I went to the top Munich sights. We saw the Frauenkirche, St. Peters Church, Heiligiest Church, vitualienmarkt (a market where you could buy practically any food you wish) and the Glockenspiel. We saw the Glockenspiel play at 11am and it was so neat to see again. After a great lunch at the Marienplatz and more beer, the family drove me to my hotel up in north Munich near David's apartment. They dropped me off and we all said our goodbyes. They then headed off to Frankfurt for their flight this morning. For dinner, I was lucky enough to be invited by David's boss/mentor to his home to join their plans with other students who work at BMW with David. The night was really awesome and it was interesting to hear the Bavarian dialect in a more personal conversation. We ate so much and the entire table was full of so much food. There were sausage balls, potato salad, pasta salad, pork, grilled mozzarella and tomatoes, bread, and a cheese platter. We had beer and wine and it was a great night of conversation!
Right now I am waiting for David to get off work so we can go sight seeing this afternoon. David then has the next week off so we can travel to Innsbruck and he can use his vacation days.
While talk again when I have internet! Thanks for reading!