A Travellerspoint blog

Best weekend in Europe so far

overcast 22 °C

I just got back from Munich (München in Deutsch) and I had the best time so far since landing on this continent. In terms of city exploration that is. I have met some amazing people and done some wild, fun and careless things while here but München....this place was off the scale fun. Bavaria and Bavarians are amazing. The only let down was time and not enough of it. I would like to explore this city is depth some other time. I think a week would cover it. Stay tuned for the tales of me screaming, "Prost!" until I was hoarse, downing Bavarian bier and the exploration of neuschwanstein. As a side note, I think I am finally sick of schlosses. :)

Posted by CanaGerm 11:47 Archived in Germany Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Soy and Degerloch

overcast 20 °C

Last night I had a more laid back evening with my friends. The only drinking involved was enjoying glasses of soothing white wine and a couple sips of Fanta. After work I found myself taking the ubahn (I usually take the sbahn to travel around the city) for the first time. The ubahn is like the TTC in Toronto but these street cars travel under as well as above ground. Very cool experience.

Taking the ubahn opened a whole new world for me. Stuttgart seems to be divided into two sections in a way but it is purely geographical. Part of the city lives on the bottom of the mountain and the rest on top. I have only visited the bottom, where I reside and travel from, but have not been on the top as of yet. I used to look up and wonder how to get up there. From down below, you can see houses and obviously life up above but I always forget to ask how to get up there. Well, the ubahn showed me.

Mx friend lives in Degerloch, a more affluent section of Stuttgart, and the only way to get to her home was via the ubahn. The route was exremely easy and effortless. I was always intimidated by these streetcars but after last night, no more. Things are just getting easier and easier for me here. There was one part on the ride to Degerloch where we were traveling through the mountain and it was pure darkness on both sides of the windows. About 20 seconds later, we burst through and emerged on top of the city where sunlight poured through the window! And the view of the city below was outstand! This was truly magical for me and I gasped as I didn't expect it but of course no one else on the car was impressed so I kept my enthusiasm inside and looked around. Seeing the city scape from above was wonderful. I will be back as the photo ops are just too priceless to miss.

After settling at Nikki's, we were joined by another friend, Jenny, where we had the best spaghetti bolognese ever! The sauce was soy based made from soy meat-replacement and was truly yummy. I have had this type of thing before but it was made with tofu. I prefer the soy anyday. After a few glasses of wine, good food and dessert, too much laughing and girl talk I took my leave. This time on the train, I totally sober and coherant. Also, good times.

Posted by CanaGerm 13:18 Archived in Germany Tagged living_abroad Comments (0)

The elegant Salzburg, Austria - Day 1

sunny 21 °C

I have always wanted to see Austria. When I was planning the trip with TT, Austria and Croatia were two of the countries that I desperately wanted to visit. Austria for the Alps and Croatia for Lake Bled. I have not and probably will not see Lake Bled this time but maybe on another trip, I will squeeze it in. However, I was able to fulfill a wish and see the Alps. I not only viewed the alps from afar, I was able to hike them! It was a real treat.

So, my trip to Salzburg started out bright and earlly. Two Saturday's ago, I was up and out of the hotel around 6am and at the Kornwestheim banholf 10 minutes later. My train was leaving from the Stuttgart hbf a little before 7 and I was more than on time. Once on the train, I basically sat back and relaxed. I read, dozed and read some more.

My train was originally supposed to arrive in Salzburg after 12pm but when I checked my watch and it said 11:55 and we were still in Germany, I knew it was going to be late. No big deal since the hostel is 24hr check in but they have 2 Sound of Music Tours per day, one at 9am and the other leaving at 2pm and from the looks of things, I wouldn't be able to catch my intended, two pm. I was right. We got in about 45 minutes later than scheduled and the 2nd group was already gone by the time I reached the hostel.

The hostel was really easy to find and about 10 minutes walking distance from the main station.
After checking in, dumping my bag and booking a tour for the next day (Sound of Music), I headed out. As a note, there was a Mozart 3-course dinner and music show that I would have loved to do but I was not aware of this so I didn't bring the appropriate clothing for such an event. When I get back to Salzburg, and I will (IGSML), there is this and one more tour I would like to participate in.

Using my map I got at the hostel (remembered this time Anita), I walked around marveling at the pretty buildings, the gorgeous colors and the nice cars! Yes, the cars are HOT in Salzburg. It seems that everyone owns a Audi or BMW!
Some observations so far on Salzburg:
-From the train I knew we had entered when I saw the gorgeous Alps.
-It is colder temperature wise. Obviously the mountains have something to do with that.
-There are a lot more open, green spaces. A lot of patures and cows. This was all viewed on the train while coming into the city.

What I really wanted on this trip was mountains, beautiful views and some serenity.

I set down Paracelsustr., the street the hostel is located on, intent on seeing Kapuziner Monastery but was easily sidetracked by the beauty that surrounded me. Salzburg is CLEAN!! I thought most parts of Ontario and Stuttgart were clean but Austria is almost pure, it is that clean. It was so clean that I took a big breathe and inhaled....nothing!! I tried a few more times and my lungs were rewarded with clean, pure, alps purified air. It was so nice to be in this environment, even for this short period of time.

I took many pictures of the gorgeous colorful buildings and soaked it all in. Instead of heading straight to the monastry, I walked slowly along the old town street of Linzer Gasse.

It was at this point that I stumbled across an old yet gorgeous graveyard and wandered in. It was purely by accident but it was really nice. It is beautifully maintained and clean. I discovered that Mozart's wife, Constanze, and two of his children were buried in this yard. I don't think I happened upon Mozart's grave site.
I never made it to the monastry as I kept walking Linzer Gasse after my lunch. I did however see the monastries entry and kept the location in my head for tomorrow. Next was the city center. It is all about old buildings, color, history, beauty and the Salzach river.
I saw a boat that was circling the city and thought I would catch it but after meandering too long, I missed it and didn't stick around for the next ride. There was just too much to see and do.

I kept walking and crossed a bridge and walked some more. Looking beyond, I was intrigued by a big white imposing structure I saw off in the distance. When I looked at the map, I discovered it was a castle so off I went. I walked with a purpose as I was excited to see this structure.
Right before I was to take the funicular (expensive at euro 10,50 return!!) up, I was distracted by another graveyard. I know the people who laid in this yard had to have mega bucks just looking at the ornate structures and grounds.
Now onto the fort. It is said that, Hohensalzburg Castle, is one of the largest and well preserved forts in Europe. Once off the funicular, I made my way to the front (I think) of the fortress and took a few pictures the buildings edge. I was scared because I was really, really high up but I took them anyway. The sights of Salzburg from this height was breathtaking.
I walked up some stairs, on spaghetti legs mind you, so that I could explore more. My first stop was at the Marionette museum. I've always thought these dolls are slightly creepy but I still checked the place out. The museum had a old and musty scent. I think it is partially due to the marionettes themselves which was seriously antique. And scary looking.
I walked further along the fortress and stopped at another section (the place is huge) to check out the city view from another angle.
After taking some pictures and soaking it all up, I moved on.
Back in the old town, I headed in the general direction of the hostel but I sort of detoured. I stopped in a park and relaxed a bit. Then I decided to head back to the hostel for real but was once again distracted!
There was a mob of people and a beautiful yellow building in front of me. I had to check it out.
It happened to be the Palace of Mirabell (Mirabelle schloss). I took pictures including a unicorn, pretty flowers, a gable that for some reason reminded me of the book "Anne of Green Gables" and a miniture green maze.
More walking and then the hostel. This afternoon, when I originally arrived, I booked a Sound of Music tour for the next day but my heart was not into it. Don't get me wrong, I wanted and still do, the sound of music but what really drew me was a tour called Ice Cave Tours. At the hostel I quickly changed the sound of music for this adventure tour. A bit more up my alley. I was a bit more interested, in my limited time, in climbing the Alps and part of a sculptures shaped purely by water, nature and God.

Dinner was being prepped at the hostel so I went into the dining room to see what was happening in the meantime. I met and chatted with some girl there as we both struggled to get a movie playing on the tv/dvd/vcr combo thingy. I ordered Pizza Margarita for my dinner and ate while reading. I have to admit that after my day of travel and exploration, I was getting tired. Instead of heading in though, I went online for a while and then met my roommates in the room.

Posted by CanaGerm 08:00 Archived in Austria Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

The big titty girls

overcast 20 °C

Yeah.....that's what we chose to call ourselves last night at the bar. I went out with my friend Nikki and had a fantastic time!

Anyway.....I met Nik at the platz and we immediately went to eat. We were both starving so we opted for Thai. Fantastic food and good company. There is no better combo. Then we went to the red light district.
Um, I could get work there if I was hard up for some cash! The "ladies of the night" were more like grandma's and no one attempted to look or act sexy. I was in shock as I hd a completely different picture in my head. I don't know, but I thought something along the times of red fabrics, lace, perfume, smiles, winks. I don't know. I mean, I don't hang out in this places enough to know but I was thinking of things along the lines of what I see in movies.

What I saw in real life was not glamorous. Nikki and I basically walked around pretending to take photos but were giggling and surveying the scene. It was too much. Nothing glamourous here. I kept thinking, are men that hard up for sex that they would revert to this?!?!? :)
After our detour into red sin, we went to the infamous irish pub for a few.
And a few it was. Let's just say that by the time I left the place, I could barely make it to the train, was afraid of falling on the tracks and kept sliding on the train seats on the way to Kornwestheim. I felt like those drunks I always see and smell Saturday mornings when I am bound for another adventure. Good times!
Getting back to the title of this post, Nikki and I met up with some of her friends and we all had a bit too much fun. We named ourselves the big tittiy girls because well, we all have big ones. Trust me, I never do this type of thing but maybe I should. Feeling liberated and free is the best!

This morning was......not very good but I managed work fine and I'm still alive. In the end, it was fantastic to get out and live it up! My time is limited and I want to go all out and remember this as one of the best times of my life. So far it is but adding a few yager shots never hurt nobody! :)

Oh, this restaurant, right in the heart of the red light district apparently serves the BEST swabian meals I am told. I think we will hit it up but has anyone had the food here?

Posted by CanaGerm 03:55 Archived in Germany Tagged living_abroad Comments (1)

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