Germany & Austria, Jul/Aug '12

Hmmmmm... how does one get from Holland to Austria in ten days or so? This was close to the schedule on what was a completely unplanned part of our European jaunt.

To be honest, I don't like not having plans so it was a little 'stressful' (if being on holiday can be such) having to make an impromptu plan to get across Germany for a rendezvous in Hallstatt - a destination that was on our 'must see' list all the way.

How much easier things are with holiday planning in the modern day though. A few quick searches and it was settled - we would just take a drive South along the 'Romantic Road' which would conveniently end in the Bavarian Alps from where Austria could be entered.

This turned out to be a wonderful plan and many great sights were seen and experienced along the way.

Moving on, a few more random locations in the mountains proved even better! We absolutely love the mountains, but Pratiwi loved the rolling hills around Reit im Winkl even more (great for more gentle riding). The no-nonsense German cuisine was also very welcome. Although I'm sure the French and Italian wouldn't call it that, we found the food on this leg tasty, simple and filling - what more does one really need?

18:15

Dinner in Schotten. What else but beer & schnitzel? Nice place but so quite. Think we have whole hotel to ourselves!

06:40

Pratiwi looking out from our room. Rather quaint place in Schotten which was very quite & perhaps a bit eccentric? wink

11:05

Almost drove straight by Würzburg, but glad we didn't. The Residenz here is nice save for one slightly scary statue!

12:00

Just a few more random sights from Würzburg before we move on down 'The Romantic Road'.

12:35

The Neumünster here in Würzburg. With all that fancy decoration kind of like stepping inside a giant wedding cake? wink

16:30

Evening walk in Rothenburg ob der Tauber before a little drink and some dinner.

18:00

Meistertrunk clock: a celebration of Mayor Nusch who saved the village in 1631 by downing 6 pints of wine. Go Mayor!

18:30

More walking in Rothenburg ob der Tauber after dinner. Moon rise over the village a bonus feature smile

06:20

Breakfast at Altes Brauhaus in Rothenburg ob der Tauber (not too shabby for 300 years old!), & the aftermath. Yum tongue

08:30

Rothenburg ob der Tauber in the morning. Walking off some of our very nice, very large, breakfast.

09:00

Kaethe Wohlfahrt shop. Huge & very Christmassy! No photos allowed but Pratiwi loved it so couldn't resist. Oops! wink

10:40

Dinkelsbuhl: another quaint little German village we just passed through.

16:00

We overnight in Augsburg. Seemed quite a vibrant place. Shame about the overhead cables, but that's modern living sad

08:40

Augsburg Dom in the morning. Quite nice, but also a little plain. Well, aside from those windows.

10:25

Unusual semi-submerged statues by Amersee. And geese bullying Pratiwi. She'll stick to feeding ducks from now on! wink

13:25

Ettal Abbey (Kloster). Very impressive under the dome but seems just about everything else is closed to the public.

14:30

Linderhof Palace under the sun/clouds/sun (excuse lighting). Small, but fountain is a bit impressive & nice grounds.

15:20

The Moorish Kiosk in the grounds of Linderhof Palace... not something you expect to find in the Bavarian mountains!

16:40

Upon arrival in Farchant... enjoying complimentary cakes, coffee & tea. We even had to decline a second helping! tongue

18:15

Dinner at Hotel Gasthof Alter Wirt in Farchant. Authentic German fare. Simple, cheap & tasty. Just how we like it! grin

09:00

Babi hutan!!!! Right outside our hotel (apartment) here in Farchant (lovely place). Scary if it wasn't so tame! wink

10:20

Paddling in the river Isar. By the strange little toll road through Karwendel und Karwendelvorgebirge Nature Reserve.

11:00

Despite how it looks this is a rather empty Sylvensteinsee Dam, looking back towards where we just came from.

11:50

Passing Achensee couldn't resist having a little break and a stroll. Sadly a bit cloudy but nice all the same.

12:20

Passing the aptly named 'Panorama Restaurant Kanzelkehre'... yes... another excuse to break up the trip smile

16:20

Might be raining a bit here. But wait... here comes the sun ♩ ♫ ♩ ♫ grin

18:05

Dinner at Porto Bello. Traditional German (the name surprised us!). Accordion guy made some (thankfully good) noise!

13:10

Pratiwi enjoying the balcony outside our room. Nice traditional guest house here in Reit im Winkl.

13:51

Today's ride over to Austria & back. Definition of 'bike path' bit fuzzy here so some cyclocross action in there wink

17:45

Best dish ever? Pork steak, fried onions & sautéed potatoes topped with wurst wrapped with bacon. Nom, nom, nom! tongue

18:10

Stuck in a German beer garden in torrential rain. Luckily we have the essentials: big umbrella, more beer & pancakes!

09:30

Weitsee near Reit im Winkl. Pretty little lake & nudist spot. Not that we knew that before! I'll spare the details wink

10:30

Just one random view from the trip today. Beautiful scenery everywhere from Reit im Winkl to Hallstatt.

11:00

Königssee. Beautiful (allegedly the cleanest lake in Germany) but sadly only time for a very short walk here.

15:00

Rather overcast views across Lake Hallstatt. Pretty impressive all the same. Should look good on a blue sky day!

14:08

Cycle loop by Hallstätter See. Dubious Austrian bike paths more like train station, elevated walkway or firetrail! wink

12:50

Ahhh... so this is what it looks like when the sun shines! wink By Lake Hallstatt - spectacular! grin

13:30

The square is about as 'downtown' as it gets in Hallstatt. Yup... it's a small place, but perfectly formed.

13:35

Up on the hill in North Hallstatt. You know - the one where all the tourists take their photos. Wonder why? wink

14:00

Part way up the cliff above Hallstatt we find the church Maria Ascension. With the world's most scenic graveyard?

14:10

Above the village... it's sometimes worth walking up random staircases without knowing where they lead! wink

14:40

Back down by the lake. Time for some to enjoy coffee & cake!

16:20

By the lake shore in Zell am See, then a bite to eat. Lake, mountains, beer, food... what more could you want?

11:45

Got home from today's ride to find Pratiwi had prepared a light lunch which we enjoyed on the balcony. So lucky! grin

12:39

Cloudy ride today on the Grossglockner. 7° at the top where I arrived in short jersey sweating like a pig. Nice! grin

10:30

A few random shots from the road in Austria. Shame about the clouds, but you get the idea... a beautiful place.

14:02

Just arrived in Holzleiten (Austria still) and here's the view out the front of the building. Hmmmmmm... smile

13:29

This morning's ride: random route from where we are staying in the Alps. Nothing famous but so beautiful. Love it! grin

12:10

Lazy day so just a short drive to check out the Fern Pass. Pretty nice here, huh?

17:35

Evening walk near Holzleiten. Very nice, but sadly the light was poor so a chance to mess around with HDR smile

18:00

Sunset in Holzleiten. About as good as we've seen in the mountains... there are some things the coast is better for.