A Travellerspoint blog

In love with Salzburg

We checked out of the hostel and got to the station at 9am to catch the 9.25am train to Salzburg. It was a stunning sunny day in the mid 20's. We had purchased our tickets online for 17 E for the 1 ½ hour long train trip. After getting ourselves seated we soon realized that some seats had been pre booked and it took several moves before working out where we actually could sit!!

The scenery as we left Munich just kept getting better and better as we got closer to the snow capped Bavarian Alps. Everything is so green, pretty woods, rolling hills with lots of cows with cow bells,Bavarian style homes with wooden cladding on the 2nd level, shutters and verandahs and decorative touches. Not sure when we crossed the border into Austria but it just kept getting better.

We had a 10 minute walk from the station to our hostel that we found easily with our directions from the website. Checked into our 4 bedroom dorm – nice hostel with bar and restaurant and lounge areas. We booked ourselves on to the 2pm Sound of Music Tour with Panorama for 37E. They will pick us up at 1.30pm and take us to where the coach leaves from. We had an hour or so spare to get some nights booked ahead and look at where we will go to. We had to change Bled in Slovenia as our next place as it was getting to hard to organise getting there easily, so we will head to Graz next ( still in Austria) We will also now make Vienna our last place as it has a train that will get us to the airport in time for our flight so we don’t need to stay another night in Munich, We were originally thinking of making Prague our last stop but couldn’t make our flight in time.

The sound of Music tour went for 4 hours and was really good. We visited several sites around town where they filmed and then Leopoldskron Palace where they fell out of the boat at the back of their home. Then out to Hellenbaum Palace and gardens ( 5 km out of town) where the gazebo has now been placed. This place is beautiful and popular with the locals. There are trick fountains here that one of the previous owners used to play practical jokes on his guests but we didn't get time to see that

We then drove around the gorgeous lake district shown at the beginning of the film and in the panorama shots filmed around Lake Fuschl and Lake Wolfgang where we stopped a viewing place. Then on to the town of Mondee where the wedding was filmed in the cathedral . This place was gorgeous and the church stunning. We sat in a café and had a warm Apple strudel with vanilla sauce and icecream – sooooo good!!!

We finished at the Mirabell Gardens where lots of filming took place for the "Doe a Deer a female deer" song where they danced around the fountain. These gardens are beautiful with flower beds in swirls through the grass, statues, groves of trees all surrounding Mirabell Palace.

From here we got our first view of the old town with the imposing castle on top of this huge rocky outcrop. I had read that Salzburg has changed very little in the last 250 years since Mozart grew up here. Out of Mirabell Gardens we turned right and crossed over the Salzach River into the Old town. We wandered around for 1 1/2 hours up and down streets, into squares , inside several churches past statues and fountains and cemeteries. It was stunning and every building is joined and those under the rocky outcrop are built into the rock cliffs. The town is built around the river and under rocks of either side . It is may new favourite city. I grabbed a bratwusrt with mustard and ketchup in a toasted bun for 3.60E - delicious!!! We arrived back at the hostel in time to watch the Sound of Music film that they show every night at 8pm. Below are lots of photos of beautiful Salzburg old town.

Expenses: Train 17 E

Accommodation for 3 nights 65 E

Sound of Music Tour 37 E

Inside the church

Inside the church


Salzburg

Salzburg


Wombats Hostel Room

Wombats Hostel Room


Courtyard garden area at Wombats

Courtyard garden area at Wombats


Munich train station

Munich train station


Bavarian countryside out the train window

Bavarian countryside out the train window


So green

So green


Salzburg train station

Salzburg train station


Mum arrived in Salzburg

Mum arrived in Salzburg


Leopoldskron Palace ( back of the movie home)

Leopoldskron Palace ( back of the movie home)


Leopoldskron Palace view

Leopoldskron Palace view


Palace View

Palace View


Gazebo from the I am 16 song

Gazebo from the I am 16 song


Driveway to Hellbrun Palace

Driveway to Hellbrun Palace


Hellbrun Palace

Hellbrun Palace


Hellbrun Palace surrounds

Hellbrun Palace surrounds


Wolfgangsee Lake

Wolfgangsee Lake


Wolfgangsee Lake

Wolfgangsee Lake


Watched paragliders here

Watched paragliders here


Bavarian home

Bavarian home


Mondsee Cathedral where the wedding was

Mondsee Cathedral where the wedding was


Inside Mondsee cathedral

Inside Mondsee cathedral


Mondsee Village

Mondsee Village


Best Apple Strudel with vanilla sauce and icecream

Best Apple Strudel with vanilla sauce and icecream


Mondsee

Mondsee


Mondsee

Mondsee


Mondsee Lake

Mondsee Lake


Everyone out in the sun

Everyone out in the sun


Mondsee Lake

Mondsee Lake


Bavarian Home

Bavarian Home


Sound of Music Bus

Sound of Music Bus


Mirabell Gardens where many scenes shot

Mirabell Gardens where many scenes shot


Pretty garden beds

Pretty garden beds


The tunnel they ran through

The tunnel they ran through


Mirabell Gardens and Palace

Mirabell Gardens and Palace


Archway they ran through

Archway they ran through


Too pretty

Too pretty


EnCrossing the Salzach Rivertrance Gates

EnCrossing the Salzach Rivertrance Gates


Crossing the Salzach River to the Old Town

Crossing the Salzach River to the Old Town


Passageways everywhere

Passageways everywhere


Narrow streets and gilded shop signs

Narrow streets and gilded shop signs


Vine covered church built into the rock

Vine covered church built into the rock


City gates

City gates


Mozarts home

Mozarts home


Narrow streets and church spires

Narrow streets and church spires


Statues aplenty

Statues aplenty


Squares big and small

Squares big and small


Festival Halls

Festival Halls


Hohensalzburg fortress high on the hill

Hohensalzburg fortress high on the hill


Steps to walk on the upper terraces

Steps to walk on the upper terraces


The  cathedral

The cathedral


Residenzplatz with horse carriages

Residenzplatz with horse carriages


St Peters Kirche

St Peters Kirche


Fountains

Fountains


Mirabell Gardens

Mirabell Gardens


View back to the old town and Castle from Mirabell

View back to the old town and Castle from Mirabell


Steps they sang "Doe a deer" on

Steps they sang "Doe a deer" on


Fountain they danced around

Fountain they danced around

Posted by hillbillyramsey 17:00 Archived in Austria Comments (0)

Fairytale castles

Slept in until 7am which was lovely, had a shake and boiled egg for breakfast and went up to Mums room so we could do our 30 minute workout. Did some planning for the trip and as it is proving difficult to get from Salzburg to Bled in Slovenia so we changed it all up to save on travel time. and booked a night in Graz further north in Austria.

Cloudy outside today but lovely and crisp and cool outside requiring a jacket. We left just before 9.30am and crossed the road to the train station where we purchased our Bavarian ( Bayern) train ticket for 2 people to Fussen for 28 E. We were having trouble with the ticket machine so a kind rail worker assisted us. The ticket also included the bus to take us from the station to the castles. Caught the 9.50m train as the Bavarian ticket can't be used before 9am on weekdays It took around 2 1/2 hours to get there and bus 78 takes you from the station.

The countryside is beautiful with white bavarian style homes with wooden verandahs, cladding at the top and shutters. Lovely dark wooden barns dotted the rolling hills and grazing cows in between pretty woods.

We were going to visit the world famous fairytale castle built by King Ludwig 11 on an imposing rock in the mountains close by the castle Hohenschwngau, the neo gothic style castle where he spent his childhood by Alpsee lake. That was was not too shabby either but not as grand and romantic as the one he built within sight of where he grew up.This beautiful fairytale castle is the one that Disney based their model on . It is such a difficult word to say and we have been practicing it – Neuschwanstein ( NOYSWANSTINE). It was built 1869 – 1886

Scenically you could not have chosen a more magniicfent place to build this castle. It was perched high on a rocky outcrop, with towering snow clad mountains above it, a big waterfall and deep rushing gorge behind it and in front below lakes and rolling green plains of the valley below. Simply stunning !!!

We went to the ticket line to purchase a tickjet to go inside but all tours were booked out until 4pm and it was only 12..30pm. Apparently we could have bought tickets online. We decided to just walk round re outside of both castles which we really enjoyed. First off we caught a bus up to the top for 1E to view Neuschwanstein. Ludwig died young and never lived there. They are not sure if the murdered or committed suicide but he never married, was thought of as quite mad, spent all his money and a lot of the states money in building several romantic fairytale castles and was removed. These castles today make the state a lot of money with thousands of tourists coming through every year.

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It was beautiful walk down through the woods , a short walk around the lake and then up to the other castle that had beautiful gardens. You could see Neuschwanstein from this castle.

Before catching strain back we walked around the gorgeous little town of Fussen that had a lovely pedestrianised town centre, interesting bright buildings and and beautiful church, town hall ( the Rat Hause - Mum and I love the german name for this!!) and castle on the hill. They were white wth illusional decorations painted on them . Some of the castle windows appeared to be dormer windows but it was all an illusion. Very clever and never seen anything like it.

Back in Munich we walked all the way to other side of the old town to go and have dinner at one of the famous beer halls Hofbrauhaus that is 100 years old It was once home to Hitlers early speeches t hat seats 7000 people. They are long bench tables and very crowded both inside the cavernous rom and the interior pretty beer garden. We joined some people at one of the tables and chatted with them. A man from Singapore and a family from the USA - the daughter, father and grandfather. Talking was hard with not only the noise of the people but he laid oomph banding playing. Lots of atmosphere and fun. The waiters wore of course wearing traditional clothes and serving beer in 1litre steins

Fussen

Fussen


Fussen looking to the Rathaus

Fussen looking to the Rathaus


View over Hohenschwangau Castle

View over Hohenschwangau Castle


Oompah band at the Beer Hall

Oompah band at the Beer Hall


View of Alpee Lake

View of Alpee Lake


Fussen church tower

Fussen church tower


Mum and I

Mum and I


View over to Neuschwanstein Castle

View over to Neuschwanstein Castle


Bavarian clothing

Bavarian clothing


Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle


Hohenschwangau Castle

Hohenschwangau Castle


Buildings near the castles

Buildings near the castles


Buildings near the castles

Buildings near the castles


Near the  castles

Near the castles


View from Hohenschwangau Castle

View from Hohenschwangau Castle


Mum modelling a bavarian hat

Mum modelling a bavarian hat


Yep we got a selfie stick !

Yep we got a selfie stick !


Mum at the viewpoint

Mum at the viewpoint


Bavarian alps

Bavarian alps


Front of  Neuschwanstein Castle

Front of Neuschwanstein Castle


Alpee Lake

Alpee Lake


Fussen - illusionist dormer windows on the castle

Fussen - illusionist dormer windows on the castle


Hohenschwangau Castle gardens

Hohenschwangau Castle gardens


Fussen church Tower

Fussen church Tower


Fussen

Fussen


Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle


Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle


Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle


Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle


Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle


Walking towards Neuschwanstein Castle

Walking towards Neuschwanstein Castle


Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle

Posted by hillbillyramsey 17:00 Archived in Germany Comments (0)

Rainy Day and Dachau Concentration Camp

Slept pretty well and didn't even hear the 3 new arrivals that had come in. Woke at 5am to a full dorm. Sat in bed writing my blogs until 7am when I got up. Raining today so we are going to head on a train to visit Dachau. A sombre thing to do on a dreary day cold day. Only got to 11 degrees today.

Left at 9.30cam and caught the train to Dachau 30 minutes away ( on a Munich XXL ticket group ticket) . With the group ticket the fare cost 15 E between us. Meeting the train at the station was a bus to take us the 10 minutes to Dachau and was included in the fare.

There was no entry fee into the Concentration camp. It was the first concentration camp and was open for 12 years from 1933 when Hitler first came into power. All other camps were modelled after it and it was the training ground for the SS. It was set up for political prisoners and was called a "re-education" camp for those deemed undesirable where the motto was "work brings freedom" which was inscribed on the gate. Prisoners wore a badge to show what their crime was – gypsy, clergy, homosexual, jew, etc. The barracks were designed to hold 200 prisoners but by the end of the war had 2000 people in them. The overcrowding is unimaginable .Only 1 barrack is left standing but there are the rows of barrack foundations.

They suffered horribly with torture, medical experiments, tyrannical harshness and impossible demands with inspections for cleanliness. They were underfed, made to stand twice a day outside in the roll call areas totally motionless for an hour at a time. Many dropped dead right here. More than 200,00 went there and 30,000 died

We went into the crematorium and gas chambers. The gas chamber was never used as a mass execution areas other camps but was used on a smaller scale. There was an execution shooting area. Escape was impossible with a no go shoot zone where if you went you were shot by a guard from one of the 7 watchtowers, a ditch, barbed wire obstacle, electric fence and an outer brick wall.

It was freezing cold with driving rain and our legs got quite wet while we were walking around listening to our audio (3.50E) which was so uncomfortable and highlighted even more the suffering and discomfort they suffered standing 2 hours a day in all types of weather

There were many memorials.

We went back to the hostel for a rest, do my washing and read before heading out at 5.30pm to have a Bavarian meal at a nearby small beer house recommended by one of the staff. Mum had a huge breaded pork steak and I had bratwurst – 3 different types, boiled potatoes and sauerkraut for 7.90 E.

We walked around to nearby Augustine Keller a massive Beer Hall and beer gardens that seats 7000 – it is the 2nd largest and had a beautiful leafy garden

At the train station I was excited to find a shop to buy 6 hard boiled eggs for 3.5 E. Sat in the indoor garden area of the hostel to read before falling asleep at 9.15pm

The gate all prisoners entered through

The gate all prisoners entered through


Plaque commemorating the Liberation in 1945

Plaque commemorating the Liberation in 1945


Mum in the rain

Mum in the rain


This vast area was for roll call twice a day

This vast area was for roll call twice a day


One of the memorials

One of the memorials


One of 7 watch towers

One of 7 watch towers


Bunks - 2 - 3 per bed

Bunks - 2 - 3 per bed


The avenue where prisoners could talk once a day

The avenue where prisoners could talk once a day


One of the barrack foundations

One of the barrack foundations


Barracks were built to house 200 but had 2000

Barracks were built to house 200 but had 2000


Dachau

Dachau


Green strip is the no go zone where you got shot

Green strip is the no go zone where you got shot


Looks pretty but this is the crematorium

Looks pretty but this is the crematorium


Crematorium

Crematorium


The ovens

The ovens


Pit of ashes

Pit of ashes


Entrance gate - work brings freedom sign

Entrance gate - work brings freedom sign


Moving memorial sculpture

Moving memorial sculpture


Memorial wall

Memorial wall


My bratwurst, saurkraut and potato meal

My bratwurst, saurkraut and potato meal


Mum's  schnitzel

Mum's schnitzel


Restaurant we had dinner

Restaurant we had dinner


Restaurant sign

Restaurant sign


Leafy beer garden

Leafy beer garden


Beer Garden

Beer Garden


Entrance to Augustiner Keller

Entrance to Augustiner Keller


Inside the Beer Hall

Inside the Beer Hall


Painted ceiling of beer hall

Painted ceiling of beer hall

Posted by hillbillyramsey 17:00 Archived in Germany Comments (0)

Munich -Capital of Bavaria

Due to land in the next 30minutes so thought I would start my blog, so some os writes before I land and again at the end of the day

Took a sleeping tablet as soon as I boarded and slept for 4 of the 11 hour flight. Woke at 5 am which was midnight Europe time. Going to be a looooonnnng day! Watched a couple more movies, ate way too much food and we landed at 7am Munich time.

Here we go a month of exploring beautiful Europe!

We arrived to beautiful blue skies, cool crisp air but warm in the sun. 5 - 20 degrees Bavaria is famous for traditional clothes of lederhosen, dirndl,beer halls, oompah bands and beautiful castles and does not disappoint They actually do wear the traditional clothes particularly over Oktoberfest.

We caught the train ( follow the Green S ) signs over to the train station opposite the airport. We bought tickets for 10.50E each from ticket machine into the Hauptbahoff station or Central Station. It took 45 minutes as the airport was out in a rural area. It was very slow and often stopped at stations for 10 minutes. We asked a man at the station which exit we should leave to find our Hostel and he walked us up and pointed it out . Our hostel was straight outside the station and across the street & we arrived there by 9.30am .

We left our luggage in a luggage room as we cant check in until 2pm. Wombats isa really nic hostel and well run. The cost is 27 E a night for a 6 bed female dorm with its one bathroom.

We had been awake since 1am local time and were tired but headed out to explore. Our location is perfect being only a few long blocks walk of 15 minutes to the old town. Munich is the 3rd largest German city and capital of Bavaria. There is much evidence of that with shops with the traditional clothes of lederhosen leather pants for men and dirndls for women. There are stein mugs for beer and bratwurst sausage and sauerkraut.

We walked for miles down to the Marienplatz—a large open square pedestrian area past interesting Bavarian style buildings. Its tower contains the [i]Rathaus-Glockenspiel[/i] which chimes a few times a day Buskers and entertainers were everywhere and the whole place has a cool vibe. Three gates of the demolished medieval fortification have survived to this day—the [i]Isartor[/i] in the east, the [i]Sendlinger Tor[/i] in the south and the [i]Karlstor[/i] in the west of the inner city.

Munich was the place the Nazi party started after WW1 and was heavily bombed in WW2 losing over 50% of the inner city buildings.

It is a lovely city with squares and lots of parks and green space. The Englisher Gardens are one of the largest parks in Europe, larger than Central Park in NY and has over 78 km of path ways. We walked through Hofgarten which was a well laid out park with maple trees and fountains. Very pretty. In summer nude sunbatghing is the rule rather than the exception

In the english gardens are surfing streams where locals surf summer and winter . They are called the Eisbach surfers We watched this for ages – very cool! We walked through the park enjoying the sound of the birds and the beautiful shady trees beside rushing streams.

Back in the centre near the Odenplatz and Resident Palace which housed Bavarian rulers from 1385 to 1918 we found a nice place to sit outside and eat some lunch. And both had veggie burgers and a pretzel 2.50 E. Also bought a salad and another veggie burger for my dinner for 5.50 E.

We went back to the hostel which is only 15 minute walk to the old town and 25 minutes to the English Gardens. Really nice hostel with nice room - clean /wood floors. Mum and I did our bands workout and went back down to Marionplatz again. I climbed to the top of St Peters church up 306 steps for great view of the city and distant snow capped Bavarian alps – cost 2 E

Viktualienmarkt – wandered around this cool area with beer gardens and food markets and interesting food places. Went inside a beautiful church next to it with ornate painted ceilings. We went into several churches today and they were all quite different The [i]Frauenkirche[/i] is the most famous building in the city centre and serves as the cathedral and has the high distinctive onion shaped green domes on top.

We were so tired we strugged walking back to the hostel where I had dinner in the lovely courtyard garden area. They have a bar there and we were given vouchers for 2 free beer /wine

Eyelids are heavy and time for shower and bed - made it until 9pm when the sun was just setting

St Michaels Church and tulips

St Michaels Church and tulips


Inside St MIchaels

Inside St MIchaels


St Michael's

St Michael's


The archangel Michael wrestling the devil

The archangel Michael wrestling the devil


Curved buildings

Curved buildings


Feldherrnalle  1841 King Ludwig

Feldherrnalle 1841 King Ludwig


Park through the Hofgarten

Park through the Hofgarten


Hofgarten

Hofgarten


Eisbach Surfers in English Gardens

Eisbach Surfers in English Gardens


Waiting their turn

Waiting their turn


Surfing

Surfing


Surfing

Surfing


Surfing

Surfing


Surfing in the English Gardens

Surfing in the English Gardens


Surfing

Surfing


surfing

surfing


Weir in English Gardens

Weir in English Gardens


Weir in English Gardens

Weir in English Gardens


Another surf spot

Another surf spot


Back at the bridge on the other side

Back at the bridge on the other side


surfers

surfers


Lilac

Lilac


Beautiful decorated Royal Palace

Beautiful decorated Royal Palace


The street known as Shirkers Lane for anti nazi

The street known as Shirkers Lane for anti nazi


Looking towards the  towers of Church of our Lady

Looking towards the towers of Church of our Lady


Beer Garden

Beer Garden


City Gate

City Gate


Lovely building

Lovely building


Tower up St Peters

Tower up St Peters


Marienplatz

Marienplatz


View from the top

View from the top


Marienplatz and St Marys column

Marienplatz and St Marys column


St Mary Column and The Towers of our Lady

St Mary Column and The Towers of our Lady


Looking down to where Mum was waiting

Looking down to where Mum was waiting


City views

City views


Viktualienmarkt originated as a farmers market

Viktualienmarkt originated as a farmers market


St Peters

St Peters


Around the markets

Around the markets


More views from the markets

More views from the markets


Beer gardens in the market were packed

Beer gardens in the market were packed


Cheeses

Cheeses


Maypole

Maypole


Church

Church


Beautiful ceilings and columns

Beautiful ceilings and columns


Outside of the church

Outside of the church


Tower I walked up

Tower I walked up


Lovely building

Lovely building


Lots of  people near the city gates

Lots of people near the city gates


Fountains outside the city gates

Fountains outside the city gates

Posted by hillbillyramsey 17:00 Archived in Germany Comments (0)

Travel day

Checked in at midday for our 2pm flight to Bangkok and toasted our trip with a glass of champagne in the lounge. Knowing I was flying business all the way there makes such a difference when boarding these long flights!!! Feeling very spoilt!!!

The 9 ½ hour flight went by quickly – watched a couple of movies. Really enjoyed the Dressmaker and Queen of the Desert.

In Bangkok we had 4 hours before our flight to Munich. Mum went straight to the lounge and I had to go our immigration to collect my bags for Cambodia o store in the luggage room until my return back through Bangkok. Checking in at Business class was VERY nice in Bangkok. I had been dreading the super long security and immigration lines they always have but they had a designated area for business class to go through totally away from the usual area which took you straight into the back of the main lounge were I found Mum. Nice !!!! I love business clas!!!

It was a long 4 hours being 3am when we were to board and 4am Australian time when we took off. Went straight tosleep

( 1am Bangkok time before we took off)

Mum and I Brisbane airport

Mum and I Brisbane airport


My gear for a month

My gear for a month


Mum boarding our plane

Mum boarding our plane


On the plane celebrating with some champagne

On the plane celebrating with some champagne

Posted by hillbillyramsey 17:00 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

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