As a child I always loved fairy tales. I loved the big castles, the beautiful dresses, and the love stories. I would dress up as a princess for Halloween and hope to find my frog. Disneyland was my favorite, as a ten year old I loved to go up to the big sleeping beauty castle and get an autograph and picture with the princesses. So it was only natural when Alicia and Idecided to travel to Germany that I wanted to visit a castle.
Germany is the home for Castle Neuschwanstein, the castle that the Sleeping Beauty Castle is modeled after. We were told that this part of Germany was beautiful so we decided to go with a tour group, Mikes Bike Tour so we could bike and hike around the area.
Alicia, Allie, and I had some fun during the bike ride, skipping while singing and imitating cows. We took a short stop and swam in Swan Lake, it was a little chilly that day so we were the only ones in our tour group that actually swam. We ate lunch and met some nice Australians and then went on the Alpine Slides, which was a similar track when bobsledding.
My favorite part of the trip however was the beautiful hike to the castle. I’ve gone on many hikes over the years but this by far was the most beautiful hike and it led to a castle at the end! What could be better!
When we went on a tour through the castle I learned that the king actually spent more money on the castle then he had, so he only finished 16 rooms out of 60 and the government took it over after he passed away and immediately opened it for tourists. However the rooms he did finish were stunning.
This was probably my favorite day during my trip to Germany, however Salzburg, home of Sound of Music
, and Heidelberg
were a close second.
I have now arrived to Granada, Spain and off to start my program in my new city. I am a little nervous to meet my host family and start speaking in Spanish but this trip to Germany was a great way to meet some people in my program and get accustomed to the European lifestyle and a great end to my summer.
I arrived in Frankfurt, Germany on Thursday morning with my friends, Alicia, Christian, and Allie. At the airport we met Vera, a lady that Alicia had connections with, who is taking our luggage for the week.So it was goodbye luggage and hello backpack for 7 days!
She drove us on the Otto Bahn (yay! for no speed limits) and dropped us off at the train station. From there we took our time understanding the maps and the train station and then hopped on a train to Berlin. The trains have been very easy to understand but also have taught me so much. Like give yourself plenty of time to catch your train, the app is very helpful, the German Rail Pass is well worth the cost, some seats are reserved or for the handicapped, Munich and München are the same place, there are charging stations but don’t forget what you’re charging, and when the train turns off that means its stopped for good.
Once at Berlin we checked in to our hostel. This was my first hostel and it surpassed all my expectations of a hostel. Alicia and I felt spoiled at this hostel, we definitely weren’t going into the hostel world with cold feet. We spent a fair amount of time in Berlin, learning all about the history this city provides and then set out for a 6 hour train to Munich. Munich is a beautiful city and I have absolutely loved my time here and the adventures that it has provided including day trips to Salzburg and Neuschwanstein.
It’s been fun living on only the basics. Some clothes, a toothbrush, my camera, train pass, and my dried mangos. I’ve enjoyed not being at arms length from my phone although my camera is (I promise photos will come soon) It’s been nice to try and get accustomed to the European lifestyle and time difference before my semester even begins. I’m not gonna lie though as nice as the hostels have been I’m looking forward to staying at the Holiday Inn on Thursday night.