Updated: Oct 19, 2018
by Nina Sabin - Travel
As I mentioned in my last blog, Touring through Belgium, the format of today’s blog will start with a brief update on where we are now followed by our past journey around the world.
Currently, we just finished a five day work-stay at a goat farm in North Florida. It was our first work-stay and we were amazed how much we enjoyed the experience. We have always wanted to work on a farm, but with full-time work in our field of finance and teaching we didn’t have the time. Now we have the freedoms to try new and exciting things…it is AWESOME!!!
Our day at the farm started at 7 am. We did morning chores for about two hours, an hour for breakfast, then back to work for about another two and a half hours. By that time, we were exhausted, which was good, because we didn’t have to be back to work until 5:00 pm. However, in the meantime, we learned about how to make soap. Overall, we obtained the following skills for working on a goat farm: milking, scooping, feeding, making cheese, and the general hard work of working on a farm in rain or shine. Check on our v-blog to find out more about our AWESOME GOAT FARM experience. link...
Now back to our trip to Germany. After visiting France and Belgium, our next stop on the itinerary was Germany. Every country we visit seems like a once-in-life time trip. Each time we visited a country we thanked God for the opportunity to travel, that we were safe, and experienced another wonderful country He created.
Once again, we were back on the train as we left Belgium and entered Germany. The first stop was Nuremburg. After settling at the hotel, we were ready to explore. Just like France and Belgium, it was super cold, especially for us ‘Floridans’ (‘temporary Saudi Arabians’), so we bundled up. Then we were off to walk around the inner city, see the cobblestone streets and lots of shops with cultural items.
There was so much to see but we had to narrow down the choices since we only had a day to see the sights of Nuremburg. We jumped right into learning all we could about the fascinating history of one of Germany's most famous cities. On one side of this city is the Documentation Center Nazi Party Rally Grounds -a museum that maps Nuremberg's painful history.
In contrast, the other side of Nuremberg is a vibrant city that Germans are justifiably proud of. The striking medieval fortifications, magnificent Gothic churches, colorful marketplaces, and the hilltop castle of the old imperial city, all of which are awe-inspiring.
Since it was six of us traveling, we rented a van this was not a little van but looked like a mini bus. It was not an easy vehicle to maneuver all over Germany, but this is what they rented to us.
After leaving Nuremburg in our “mini bus”, we adventured on the Romantic Road, which was designed when Germany was desperate to rebuild a tourism industry in the post-war times.
We continued driving along the scenic drive to Dachau for a visit to its concentration camp. It is always interesting to visit a historical place. It was hard to go into this place with all it devastating history and seeing the ovens where people at the concentration camp were cremated.
We continued our journey through Germany and we drove to Neuschwantein. The hotel was a quaint Bavarian cottage. The sites were breath-taking. The ground was covered in snow. Our daughters couldn’t wait to make a snowman. They had sleds to use and we took our girls sledding through the German mountains.
Neuschwanstein is known as the heart of Bavaria. This is Germany as you have always imagined it! Soaring mountains, quaint villages and fairy-tale castles are around every corner. We viewed King Ludwig's Neuschwanstein Castle and explored through his Linderhof Castle. Along the way back, we were so close to Austria that we drove over the border to add another country to our trip. Unfortunately, as we turned around in the “mini bus” it was such a big vehicle, lots of snow on the ground and such a little place to turn, we nicked one of the mirrors with one of the road posts that was covered in snow. No damage, but a story to share.
The next day, we were back on the road again heading to Lindau and then Black Forest. We followed the German Alpine Road to Lake Constance with a visit to romantic medieval Lindau. Then, through the Black Forest, the land of cuckoo birds (and clocks!).
Our final destination on experiencing Germany was Munich. Munich, Bavaria’s capital, is home to centuries-old buildings and numerous museums. The city is known for its annual Oktoberfest celebration and its beer halls, including the famed Hofbräuhaus, founded in 1589. In the Altstadt (Old Town), central Marienplatz square contains landmarks such as Neo-Gothic Neues Rathaus (town hall), with a popular glockenspiel show that chimes and reenacts stories from the 16th century. Our favorite thing to see was the large coo coo clock in the center of Marienplatz square. Germany is known for their coo coo clocks which I have loved since I was a child. It was incredible to see the largest coo coo clock in the world.
Wow, it took two blogs just for one seven day trip. To enjoy this trip in person you can purchase our Belgium/Germany itinerary.
Our next blog will be about our first repat. Living overseas as an expat you get a yearly trip back to your home country. However, as you will see, the US wasn’t the only place we would visit as we had 40 days to travel.