Monthly Archives: October 2019

Dachau, Germany to Salzburg and Zell Am Moos, Austria

Thursday 31st October 2019
We have had a lovely day today. I have finally ha about 7 hours sleep in one night, Yay Me. Lisa is still a work in progress in that regard. We had a lovely breakfast at our hotel in Dachau then headed off to Salzburg. About a 200km drive to Salzburg city today, mostly on the autobahn. (Austria Vignette €9.20 for 10 days.) From Germany to Austria. A change of road signs again. I haven’t even got used to the ones in Germany yet. Oh well. Good for the brain. It seems a lot easier driving this time. I have relaxed in to it a lot quicker, though it is very intense on the autobahn, but the German drivers are so courteous. I love them.

The day was a little foggy, overcast and cold. 6°C again today. Very brisk. Once we arrived in Salzburg we visited Mirabell Palace and Gardens, The Old Town, Salzburg Cathedral, St Peter’s Church and Cemetery and we went up the funicular to the Fortress Hohensalzburg and also went through the inside of the castle. It was really interesting and an enormous structure. Like with all castles, each new ruler/king of the castle added a bit more to the building. We also did a little shopping as we walked through the town and markets.

Then we headed to Lake Mondsee to visit St Michael’s Basilica where Captain Von Trapp and Maria were married in the Sound of Music. Unfortunately the weather was too dreary to enjoy a visit to Mondsee Lake. Maybe tomorrow.

We then headed to Zell Am Moos for our sleep tonight in a little country Guesthouse and enjoyed another lovely dinner at Seewirt Guest House. Schnitzel, Potato, and Cranberries and Stirfried vegetables, chicken and rice. Followed by an ice cream filled pancake. Yummy!

St. Peter’s Cemetery was a good inspiration for the movie makers: It was rebuilt in the Hollywood studios for the scene when the Nazis were searching for the von Trapps and the family was hiding behind the tombstones. St. Peter’s Church can also be seen in the opening scene.

Hohensalzburg Fortress isn’t only the biggest fully preserved castle in Central Europe, it is also the emblem of Salzburg City. Construction of the fortress began in 1077.

Berlin to Munich to Dachau, Germany

Wednesday 30th October 2019
Well today we will travel on another mode of transport. We will be flying Lufthansa to Munich. I have been booking our taxis with which is working out very easy and quite competitive in cost. You get a message to say taxi is on its way, the driver’s name and number, it arrives and they bill your account. All very easy.

We fly out from Berlin at 10.30am and arrive at Munich at 11.40am. Next step to pick up the hire car, which goes by without a hitch. Then the next challenge. To drive on the wrong side of the car, on the wrong side of the road, in a foreign country. After a bit of practice around the carpark, we were out on the main road travelling at 100kmh. It was okay, not as stressful as last time but it required a lot of concentration.

Our first stop for the day is the Dachau Concentration Camp. This was easier said than done, as there was a road closed and we couldn’t get there. We had to go way off course to go the extra long way. We finally made it there at about 2.30pm.

It was a bleak day, it was a very interesting afternoon. They had a couple of barracks displaying the furniture, bunks, etc. There was a couple of churches, gas chambers, crematorium, graveyards, guard posts. It was a dreary day and it felt like it was suitable for the destination.

Then we headed to our hotel in Dachau.

Berlin, Germany

Tuesday 29th October 2019
Time to explore some more of Germany. After a beautiful smorgasbord breakfast, we hit the road running. We decided we would catch an S-Bahn (train) – another new mode of transport – to our staring point as we had 15km to walk today. Our first stop was the East Side Gallery, which is artwork on a remaining section of the Berlin Wall. Then on to the Berlin Cathedral, Potsdamer Platz, Checkpoint Charlie, Topographe of Terrors, Memorial of the Murdered Jews and finally the Brandenburg Gate. Another educating day for me from my teaching buddy. I will be so learned on my return thanks to Lisa.

We decided to head home then and walked the 3.5km back to the hotel for a well earned rest and cup of tea before dinner.

Tonight we went to the Hofbräu München for a traditional dinner and beer. It was very nice.

Chemnitz to Berlin, Germany

I have added a few photos to yesterdays blog.

Monday 28th October 2019
Well sleep is still eluding us. It is a bit of a struggle but we are soldiering onwards and upwards. It is time to move on from Benny to our little adventure. First stop Berlin. We had a lovely breakfast with Benny at home then headed to the Flixbus for our 3 hour trip to Berlin. We are both hoping to have some sleep on the way. Alas, that wasn’t to be either.

It was a very cramped but pleasant trip. On arrival at Berlin we decided to catch an Uber to the hotel as it was a challenging trip (40 mins) on and off a couple of buses/trains with about 1km of walking with heavy bags and cobblestones. A taxi was just there as we exited so we asked how much and it was as cheap as Uber, even when he had to take a detour because of road closure. Our hotel room is tiny but we are all good with that.

After a quick cuppa we head out to roam the streets of another city. We are ready to embrace the countryside soon, driving and all. We went to many interesting and rebuilt buildings. It is amazing how many of these beautiful buildings have been totally rebuilt to there original glory from being destroyed in the war. Lisa is an amazing history buff and is educating me with very interesting facts from the war. We walked for a couple of hours, then sopped in Galeria for an hour or so, then were a little late for the Brauhaus for dinner so decided to make it easy and had pizza and pasta in the hotel. We both decided on an early night and I decided no computers to see if I could sleep in my tired state early. It was a good decision as I would have got at least 7.5hours. Yippee!. Lisa also had a better night. Maybe staring at the sun early this morning helped. Thanks to my Hubby for suggesting it. Another day to be had learning about the interesting lives of the people of east and west Berlin before it’s unification.

Chemnitz, Germany

Sunday 27th October 2019
Today we saw much colder weather than the last few days, with some drizzling rain. We headed out to experience a German brunch at Turm Brauhaus which involved grazing for about 2.5 hours. The food was really nice and left us totally satisfied all day. There was fruit, cereals, cheeses, cold meats, salads, and a wide variety of hot food. It was very easy to overeat, which I did.

We had planned on a walk around the lake but decided to head home instead due to the rainy, cold day. We enjoyed some quiet time and did a little planning of a couple days time. We then headed to the Opera “Mefistofele” – a traditional German story which was produced by an Italian. It was sung in Italian with German sub titles to us who couldn’t understand any of it. It was an amazing show, the set, the costumes, the dancing and the singing. An experience indeed.

Dresden to Chemnitz, Germany

Saturday 26th October 2019
Well we were hoping for a good night sleep. Not so lucky, again. Lisa and I are both really struggling to change time zones.

We headed out early this morning and went walking to some of the places we had been in the twilight yesterday. It is a very quiet city in the morning. We saw the Frauenkirche, Transport Museum, Fürstenzug mural, Theatreplatz and then headed across the Augustus Bridge to the Japanese Palace and Gardens, then back again to walk along Bruhl’s Terrace and Academy of Fine Arts. We then headed back to the hotel to collect our luggage to go to the bus stop. We caught a Flixbus at 1pm to Chemnitz where we were met by Benny, which was fantastic. He is looking very well and we can’t wait to see Swan Lake tonight. Benny’s new apartment is so big and airy. We spent a lovely afternoon with him.

He lives about 15 minutes from the Theatre now, so we walked to the performance. He was amazing as Siegfried in Swan Lake, it was an incredible show and Benny and his partners performed so well. After the performance he showed Lisa around the theatre and we then went for drinks with friends from the company. They were very supportive of his achievement tonight, it was fantastic to see their camaraderie. It was so good to see him achieve his career dream. Woohoo Benny!!

Prague Czech to Dresden Germany

Friday 25th October 2019
Have a quick look at yesterday at the bottom, I have added a few photos with me in them.

Well after another atrocious night’s sleep we headed down for a lovely breakfast and then a quick check on where the tram stop was to head to the station this morning. Lucky we did this as it was not the right place. After a little investigation and help from Mr Google Maps we were ready for Take 2. Back we went to get our bags and walk back to the tram stop. We arrived with only a minute to spare. The tram ride was uneventful and we arrived at the Main Train station with an hour to spare. We found our train platform and once in the train settled in for the scenic train ride to Dresden, Germany. We chatted with a nice lady from the UK along the way. For future reference you need to sit on the right side of the train heading to Dresden so you can follow the scenery a bit better along the Elbe River. We arrived in Dresden at about 1pm and went to the hotel. We had decided on a Nanna Nap before heading out for a little sightseeing. We rested for about 2 hours and I managed about 20min catnap. Unfortunately for Lisa sleep eluded her.

At about 4.30pm not so well rested, we go for a walk around Dresden. About 8km this afternoon. We saw the Kreuzkirche, Frauenkirche, the Zwinger, Katholische Hofkirche, Fürstenzug and the Theatreplatz. Under advice from Benny we then headed over the river to the New Town via Statue of Augustus the Strong for dinner at Alaunstrasse near Albertplatz. We had a lovely Vietnamese meal in the trendy  (to be expected on Benny’s recommendation) part of town. We the caught the tram home to our hotel.

Another great day. We are off to Benny in Chemnitz tomorrow. Looking forward to seeing him.

Prague, Czech Republlic

Thursday 24th October 2019
After our traditional dinner we came home and Lisa was asleep by 7.30pm and I was asleep by 8.30pm. We had an atrocious nights sleep. We had some men in the street who must have gone outside for a cigarette break every hour, from midnight, 1pm, 2pm, etc. It was very disturbing. We thought we would be well rested but alas we were not. We woke for the day about 5am and just had a chat. We headed down for a lovely smorgasbord breakfast at about 7.30 and then headed out for our day of touring at about 9am. We have just arrived home at 5pm, a continuous day of walking, about 20km. Our legs and lower back are a little tired but my heart handled it really well as we were just strolling at a leisurely pace.

We started out towards the Charles Bridge, unfortunately the fog was so heavy we couldn’t even see the castle which is usually a beautiful sight. The bridge is adorned with 30 religious statues on either side of the walkway.  We then headed over the bridge and down to the John Lennon Wall, another shame as it was closed for reconstruction 🙁 Then on to St Nicholas Church, then up the stairs to the Prague Castle which was built in the 9th century. We had another day of good timing, as we arrived at the castle the guards were marching down the street to music. The Prague Castle is a spectacular building, with guards and military at the exit. We entered through security screening with the Police. We saw the Romanesque Basilica of St George, the Gothic Basilica of St Vitas completed in 1929. We then headed to Loreta which is a pilgrimage destination in Hradčany, a district of Prague. It consists of a cloister, the church of the Lord’s Birth, the Santa Casa and a clock tower with a famous chime (which we managed to here at midday). Then through the Strahov Monastery, then through the beautiful parklands to the Petrin Tower. We then meandered down through the park to the bottom where we went to the Memorial to the victims of Communism which is a series of statues in Prague commemorating the victims of the communist era between 1948 and 1989. Next stop was to try the famous Prague Hot Dog for lunch. We both had a classic hot dog with mustard, ketchup and onions. It was very yummy and was our only 20 minutes sitting down for the whole day.

Then on to the Dancing House, Wenceslas Square, National Museum, Wenceslas Statue, Upside Down Horse, Franz Kafka Monument, Lolly Shop. We then had a Trdelník which is a kind of spit cake. It is made from rolled dough that is wrapped around a stick, then grilled and topped with sugar and filled with ice cream. Decadence, we know and full of guilt. Then we headed to the markets, Sigmund Freud, back to the Charles Bridge and finally home by 5pm exhausted.

Prague Castle is the largest ancient castle in the world, occupying an area of almost 70,000 square metres), at about 570 metres in length and an average of about 130 metres wide.

I have added a few photos of me from today.

Sydney to Prague

22nd and 23rd October, 2019
What a huge 36 hours. Lisa left Sydney at 5pm and travelled via Singapore and Frankfurt to Prague and I left Sydney at 9.45pm and flew via Dubai to Prague. We met up at 1.30pm where we were met by a taxi driver through He was little late but it was a very easy connection to our hotel. He was very informative about Brexit, industry, Prague money, and he even recommended a traditional restaurant for dinner. 

We arrived at our hotel about 2.30 and after a cup of tea headed out to have a look at the Old Town. We saw the Astronomical Clock in action (perfectly timed), the Old Square, St Nicholas Church, The Jewish Quarter and Synagogues, Powder Tower, Municipal House, The Dancing Building, Franz Kafka Monument and lots of amazing architecture. 

Navigating was a little difficult with google as the streets are narrow with tall buildings, blocking the signal a little. 

We then headed to the restaurant recommended by our taxi driver for an early dinner at Novomestsky Pivovar (New Town Brewery) where we had a beer and some traditional Czech Food. It was quite nice but we do miss our veggies already.

Then home for an early night and hopefully a lovely sleep.