6/12/15

Munich, Germany & Saying Farewell to Our Rhine River Tour

Hey everyone!  Today is the final installment of our Rhine River Tour, and we are in Munich, Germany.  One of our optional tours was for Berchtesgaden & Hitler's notorious "Eagles's Nest."  It had to be cancelled because of snow, making it too dangerous for coaches to traverse the road.  That was kind of a bummer, but we survived.  We arrived in Munich in the early afternoon and took off walking and exploring.  We were within walking distance of the Marienplatz, so we had a great time strolling around.

Munich is the capital of Bavaria, a state in southern Germany. It is Bavaria’s largest city and the third largest city in Germany (after Berlin and Hamburg).  Just as a comparison, Munich's population is approx. 1.3 million & covers about 119 sq. miles; Phoenix, AZ's population is about 1.5 million & covers approx. 517 sq. miles.  So Munich has a lot of people in a relatively small space.
I picked up several postcards, because it's just impossible to get really great photos with so many people.  I especially liked this shot of the rooftops.



Very busy!  One thing that was really cool was a separate lane on the sidewalks for bikes, because there are a lot of cyclists.

This is the Isar River which flows along the edge of the city center.  It is fed from the Alps and empties into the Danube.

It's a great source of recreation -- rafting (more like a gentle float), picnics, & sunbathing.  There are even some designated areas for nude sunbathing -- nope, didn't see any of that because it was still way too chilly!

We started to walk past this restaurant, but we were lured in by some good-looking food being served street-side.  We decided it was warm enough to eat outside & so much fun to people-watch!

We did go inside to use their facilities, & this was the inside decor -- loved this!

I don't even remember what The Man had, but my first guess would be "BRATS," but I had the best hamburger I've ever eaten.  The meat was covered in goat cheese with cranberries & lightly melted, and then just look at that bun and the salad -- oh my goodie deliciousness!

We did a lot of strolling around for the rest of the afternoon.

Coffee Fellows
We stopped in here for a jolt of caffein to help get us back to the hotel.  After that wonderful lunch, we didn't want dinner, but we were ready to kick-back, relax in our room, and get a good night's sleep.  We will be leaving right after breakfast for a coach and walking tour.

Saturday morning greeted us with gusty & very chilly winds -- layer-up and don't forget the umbrella!

This is the Nymphenburg Palace.  It's one of the largest royal palaces in Europe.  In 1664, Prince Ferdinand Maria had the palace built as a present to his wife, who had borne him the long-awaited heir, Max Emanuel. Max Emanuel himself later played a significant role in expanding the palace layout.
We only toured the outside of the palace, which was okay by us.  We had pretty much seen enough castles, palaces & cathedrals at this point!

This was quite beautiful and the grounds were gorgeous!

The grounds and gardens are supposed to be some of the most beautiful in the world.

The coach took us to a spot just outside the city center, called Marienplatz or Mary's Square.  The Man & I had roamed around this area the afternoon before, but we were happy to be there again.  It was teeming with people, both tourists and locals, as this was a Saturday.  There was a big Farmers' Market going on, and many of the restaurants & taverns were overflowing with soccer fans -- very raucous & noisy but not out of control.  This plaza dates back to the 12th century when medieval markets, celebrations and tournaments took place right where we were standing.

Every day this central square is crammed with onlookers with their chins aimed skywards.  They’re watching one of the city’s most beloved oddities, the Munich Glockenspiel.  This chiming clock was added to the tower of the Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall) the year the building was completed in 1907.  At 11am and midday the Munich Glockenspiel recounts a royal wedding, jousting tournament and ritualistic dance with life-size characters - all events which have etched a mark on Munich’s popular folklore.  The show lasts about 15 minutes.  Different tunes are played on the clock’s 43 bells.

HERE is a link to my IG if you would like to see the Glockenspiel in action.

This butcher shop was right next door to a bakery -- it's past lunchtime and we are hungry!

We ducked into a restaurant-tavern that was packed with soccer players and all the "wannabes" for some lunch.  We had a table a bit out of the way, but still in a great location to watch all the fun going on!  Of course we had to start with these!

Isn't he cute?

One of us had brats & potatoes, and one of us had chicken schnitzel, covered in a cheesy-mushroom sauce & served with spaetzle.  Care to guess who had what?
We roamed all over the place, walking off some of that lunch, and not getting back to the hotel much before it was time to go out again.

This would be our last night on this tour, and we were having a farewell dinner together as a group at a small local restaurant just a short distance from the hotel.

Our server was dressed in her lederhosen! 

I honestly cannot remember what this was called, but it was terrible.  The beef was tough and that dumpling thing was very rubbery in texture.  I didn't notice anyone cleaning their plate!

Our server spoke almost no English, so she couldn't tell me what this dessert was.  It wasn't bad -- some kind of spongecake roll with a firm & creamy center.  Oh well, it's not like any of us had gone hungry on this tour!  We had a good time chatting about the things that we had most enjoyed, and some were already planning their next trip.

The next morning we had a shuttle to the airport.  

Courtesy of Munich International Airport Advertisement

Munich International Airport is ultra-modern & very efficient.

A short 11 hours (ha!) later, we were in the Atlanta International Airport.

Courtesy of Atlanta International Airport Advertisement

We had a 5 hour layover.....ugh, but it took over an hour to go through customs.  Even going through regular security to your boarding gate is a lot more involved than anywhere else we've been.  They actually do a physical pat-down after you've gone through the "x-ray" machine.  Whew, finally got through all of that and only had 3 more hours to wait!  We did find a place to grab some food, and we stretched that out to an hour......2 more to go!  

And we are off....4.25 hour flight time to Phoenix!


Courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport Advertisement

Oh, you big, beautiful Phoenix Sky Harbor, we are glad to be back!  We got our luggage very fast, walked out to get the shuttle to the off-sight parking, & we were loaded and driving home in 30 min.
As much fun as we had on our trip, the best feeling was walking into our home.

If you've been traveling with me, thank you so much!  I've been doing these posts for over two weeks, but it has been fun to get all of this documentation finished and now I can start working on scrapbooking this wonderful trip.  There is just one more post I plan to do that is connected with this trip.  I want to do a review -- the good, the bad, & things I wish would have been different.  I'm sure you will be waiting with bated breath for that post!

I hope y'all have a wonderful weekend, and I'll be back next week!

6 comments:

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

Oh this brought back so many memories of my trips. You do great tours.

Consider It All Joy said...

It's been great to see what an overseas tour is like. I've never been out of the country, except Mexico! In fact, I've not been to NY or DC and actually only about 12 states in the US. So thanks for taking me along! Many blessings, Cindy

Dee M said...

Looks like you had a wonderful time! I loved Munich, and I remember the Glockenspiel was fascinating. We went in the middle of summer, so we saw some of that nude sunbathing you mentioned, lol. Thanks so much for sharing -- my family is loving the tour! :)

Something Nice and Pretty said...

I'd love to visit there, my husband was born there and he and his parents came over in 1952 he was 19 months old. I can't imagine living in a place that big! I'm glad you had a great time and happy anniversary to you both!

Lisa @ Texas Decor said...

Okay Carol, fess up...are you SURE you didn't partake in the nude sunbathing??? ;) Your hubby sure did enjoy his brats, didn't he? Mine would have been the same way. He loves those! Love the interior decor of that restaurant and I bet that little coffee shop had a great cup o' Joe! Love all these pretty pics. You'll have a ball putting together a scrapbook. Great memories!

Traci said...

I love a good burger! For some reason every single time we fly I get the pat down after going through the xray machine. So annoying. Going through customs when we got off our cruise in Puerto Rico was the easiest & quickest I've ever gotten through. It's never fun to have a 5 hour layover especially when you're going home!

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