Well another week has passed and I realise that I am yet to write of our latest trip as promised.
We have had Mum & Dad Pfahlert and Amanda & Ed Senior staying this week which has been great but rather hectic. They have now gone on there separate ways Mum & Dad now heading onto the USA and Amanda & ed to Thailand so I have time to sit and reflect on the last month or so.
Just a word from Pete. I’ll interrupt Megan as we go with my comments, in italics.
So … our European trip. We took our car across to the continent by ferry and spent 10 days exploring. We had one night in Brugge, Belgium; one night in Cologne, Germany; 3 nights at Maria Laach close to the Rhine Valley region in Germany and 3 nights in Kaufungen, Germany before heading back across the continent and back to Newcastle.
Brugge: I loved this city. It has loads of character and although busy with tourists there were plenty of quiet spots and streets. Pete was a little disappointed as much of the city is considered fake due to restorations following WWII. The Flemish people were really friendly and most spoke very good English which made our first couple of days easier.
One of the observations I made in Belgium was how very particular people seemed to be about their houses and gardens. It was what I expected Germany to look like, but in the end I was surprised with how industrial, old and poorly maintained Germany was in many places.
Brugge also seemed to be the place where we did the most stereotypical things. We had some Belgian Beer (below) and I had Belgian Waffles and Megan had a Waffle Cone Ice-Cream.
A lovely shot of a canal in Brugge the night we arrived, it was surprisingly quiet, as can be seen from the empty street.
Cologne: The Cologne Dom (Cathedral) was spectacular!! We especially enjoyed the climb up the tower and the views we were rewarded with once we got to the top. There really wasn’t too much else to see in Cologne but we had a lovely lunch by the river before heading off to our next stop.
Maria Laach / Rhein Valley / Mosel Valley: This was the relaxing part of our holiday. We didn’t drive for more than an hour on any day while in this region and despite expecting it to be busy, it was very quiet. I guess that we just weren’t there in the high season. Our first day we took a cruise on the Rhine and explored a couple of the villages and on the second day we drove along the Mosel valley, took a tour at a castle (Burg Elz (pictured below)) and explored more villages.
This was a beautiful part of Germany and I would strongly recommend people visit there if you’re in the area. The little villages were lovely, and I’m quite keen to go back and explore a few more.
The lovely couple by Maria Laach at our campsite just before leaving to head to Kaufungen
Kaufungen: Here we attended a close friends wedding. It was a fantastic time with family and friends and making new friends. The wedding itself was lovely and was really a whole day (and night) event. We spent three days in Kaufungen and the time really just flew by.
Neither Pete or I had driven on the right before so that was an expereince. As blokes seem to do, Pete insisted on driving and expected me to navigate so overall we managed to get around well on the continent. I think that I relaxed a little once we got back to England as we missed a turn off the motorway and ended up in central London close to rush hour – oops! Eventually we made it back to Newcastle and after a week away we were pleased to be back.
It’s Saturday afternoon here, and this time tomorrow we’ll be at Murrayfield, Edinburgh (hopefully) watching the All Blacks’s trounce Scotland. Go All Blacks!