It was a fast trip to Germany and back, based on our 36 hour timeline, but we hadn’t counted on close to eight hours of traffic. When you take that into account plus another seven or eight hours sleeping and then five more hours home, well, we barely saw München (Munich) at all. Luckily for us it wasn’t a sightseeing trip but more of a food trip. So, quick trip or not we accomplished our goals for the weekend.
We took off around eight Saturday morning after collecting R & C from their domicile. Then we hit the bar for some morning cappuccino and croissants (yes, it was apricot). Then the trip got real; real and full of Germans heading back to Germany after holiday. Lots and lots of Germans heading north. Google just kept adding on delays and traffic, it was a long line of red. We took some beautiful back roads and avoided other travelers until we no longer had a choice. When there are only so many passes through the Alps sooner or later all roads must converge. So into traffic we went.
Austria and Germany are pretty green (despite the lack of rain and heat wave they are having) It really does make you want to sing “The Hills are Alive with the Sound of Music”. I didn’t (and everyone was grateful) but I wanted to.
We stopped in Innsbruck for a late lunch and it was fantastic, everything I had been missing about German food. Sauerkraut, slices of pork and knodel (bread dumplings, kind of like a round ball of stuffing).
And beer! Of course!
After some food and a quick stretch of our legs we loaded back up for the final stretch into München. We finally checked into our hotel by five-ish and set out for the wilds of Altstadt München (old city). We walked and came to a Augustiner Beer hall, stopped for another beer, then headed on down the street. We went into a couple of churches (Italy is not the only one with beautiful churches though München tends to have more gothic structures *in my opinion*).
St. Michael’s church is built in a Renaissance style with a beautiful statue of the Saint, himself, standing watch from the back of the church.
The Frauenkirche is famous for its gothic architecture but more famous for the Devil’s Footprint. A black footprint set into a paving stone just inside the entrance of the church. The legend says this is where the devil was when he realized he had been duped by the builder/designer Jörg von Halsbach. He (the devil) thought that Halsbach had built the church with no windows. Depending on the legend the devil’s derision was based on the idea that he had compelled Halsbach to build the church with no windows for financial help or maybe he thought it had no windows and was a worthless place of worship. Either way if you stand in the “Devil’s Footprint” you can see no side interior windows and for several hundred years you also could not see the front window because it was obscured by a large altar. The “Devil’s Footprint” is either a stamp of glee or anger depending on your interpretation of the story but either way it has been there since the completion of the church around 1525.
From there we found our way into the side of the Rathaus (town hall) and found a great restaurant for more German food. With everyone full and happy we moved on down and scoped out the Hofbrauhaus.
The Hofbrauhaus is restaurant commissioned in 1589 by Duke Wilhelm V as part of the Royal Brewery. Despite its long history the interior reminds me of a Furr’s cafeteria, (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Furr%27s) a restaurant of questionable taste from my childhood. It was also hot and loud and just not over all appealing but that may because I am not 20 anymore.
Germany, unlike Italy, closes down early (by 22:00) and so we made our way back to our hotel for one more nightcap (I had water but it was like a nightcap because I was so tired). Our hotel was very nice and clean, slightly surprising as we walked past Hookah bars and several club erotica’s to get to it. Comfortable and cozy, lulled to sleep by my water nightcap I slept all to briefly before we got up Sunday to have breakfast.
Ah, Germany, the land where I don’t have to have filled croissants. I like my croissants perfectly flaky and I really like them plain, though I have accepted apricot marmalade in my croissants since moving to Italy I will never truly love them that way. Not only did I eat a croissant but I also ate a pretzel (another hard to get item in Italy). After breaking our fast we headed back to the Altstadt to watch the Glockenspiel. The clock tower in Marienplatz (one of the main squares) that plays/performs for the tourists a 2-3 times a day depending on the season. It consists of 32 life size figures that joust, dance or watch the proceedings in glee, this is all timed to the 43 bells that toll along with the performance. It lasts about 10-15 minutes, which is a long time to stand with your head cocked up at a strange angle.
After that was done we got back in our car and headed back to Innsbruck, where we just happened to find a Fish Festival. It was small and the day was hot but we were able to finish off our trip with Bratwurst on a roll, vegetable kabobs, beer, and ice cream.I could not have asked for a better finish to a German food weekend.
Now, we are just trying to recover from our quick jaunt and Will has somehow managed to catch a cold (in the middle of summer).
Not completely sure what the next weekend will hold but if it is exciting I am sure I will be writing about it.
Fino alla prossima (Until next time)
Ciao miei Amici