Results tagged “Walking” from Europe 2016

Sleep and breakfast, rinse and repeat.

After breakfast, around 9am, we headed out. We wandered down to the fortress, expecting to have to pay to go in and possibly you do to go in the buildings, but you can walk all around the grounds for free which was pretty cool. We wandered around for three quarters of an hour and there's some great views of the city.

Then we headed up to the Historical Museum, because our tickets for the viking ship museum covered it. Didn't really spend all that much time there.

Then back to the hotel to sort out our bags and get ourselves ready. We'd done 10000 steps before lunch time!

The hotel was in a super convenient location - right on top of the station. So getting to the trains was super easy. We went and got some tickets for the regular train, not the airport express, because it's like half the price to do it that way. The train got up to 200 km/h for most of the trip and took about the same amount of time as the airport express anyway. And it had free wifi :)

Got to the airport and checked in. Check in and bag drop was all electronic and super easy, didn't have to interact with any humans at all. Oslo airport is generally quite user friendly. There's plenty of shops in the terminal too to look at while waiting. I finished up yesterday's photo sorting then grabbed a slice of pizza for lunch. Then mum and I went through all of her photos that I'd scanned recently and labelled what we could.

Our plane was about half an hour late leaving, I forget the reason why.  Technical difficulties I think. Took off to the south and saw Oslo as we flew over it. Then over the Netherlands - pretty sure I saw Schipol and Rotterdam but really need to see the gps track to be sure. Rain as we arrived in Brussels.

Brussels airport is *not* very user friendly. We wanted to see about our flights tomorrow, but we first had to try and figure out which terminal it would likely go from. After wandering around trying to find anything useful, but failing, we thought we'd just go check in to the hotel and dump our bags then come back and try again. Even trying to get out of the airport to get to the hotel (which is conveniently just across the road from the terminal we came out of) was a drama. I couldn't even see emergency exit signs anywhere. We ended up asking someone how to get out of the damned terminal! Fail fail fail.

So checked into the hotel (it was about 19:40 by this point and we were tired and hungry). Had a look at the restaurant downstairs, but it looked expensive and uninspiring, so we went back to the airport. Because of the bombings a while back, security is pretty intense. There's no car pickups/dropoffs outside the terminal anymore - people have to use the parking garages for that. Not even any taxis.  They must go somewhere, but don't know where. So the road between the terminal and the hotel is pedestrian only, with a security tent setup for access to the terminal, and a *lot* of heavily armed soldiers and police. Apparently from tomorrow the split terminal checkins are merging back into the one. Or something. Also apparently only passengers are allowed into the terminals at the moment - no visitors or people saying goodbye. Not that they actually checked that when we went back in so whatevs.

Anyway, found something to eat (just some pasta), then back to the hotel.

Slept mostly ok - the cooler temperature certainly helps.

Breakfast options were pretty limited, but the bacon was nice.

After breakfast we headed out for a tour of Oslo. We stopped opposite the Opera house for a photo stop. Drove around town for a bit. Went to the Vigeland sculpture garden which I quite enjoyed - the sculptures were quite interesting.

Then to the viking ship museum to see a couple of very well preserved viking ships which was pretty cool.

Then to the Fram museum to have a look at and on the Fram, a ship that explored both the north and south poles around the turn of the century.

Then got dropped back at the hotel.

We dumped some of our stuff then headed out for a good long wander around Oslo - alll the way from our hotel at the east central station up to the palace, then down to the water front, had an ice cream (Oslo was *hot* yesterday - 27C!!) then back to the hotel to get ready for dinner.

Had the "farewell" dinner which was nice enough, although I struggled to get through my food. Chatted to some people for a while longer and suddenly it was 10:30pm ?? So pretty much just collapsed into bed without doing any photo or gps stuff.

HOT!! HOT HOT HOT!!!! Horrible hotel room. And bright too. We turned the light off and it's like "did we turn the light off?" Of course at 4am it's like "is it morning?". Le sigh.

At breakfast I really didn't feel like eating - just didn't want to be hungry. And need to eat enough to only need a light lunch as everything is stoopidly expensive here.

After breakfast walked down to see the 3800-person carrying Costa ship in the fjord. We were pretty lucky that there weren't any cruise ships in port yesterday to clog up the trolls road. Today tour bus after tour bus was heading into town to take people places.

Had a morning pitstop in Lom.

Made an unscheduled stop at a small cemetery where another Insight guide was buried - she'd actually died on tour which was all very sad.

Stopped in Lillehammer for lunch. Had issues finding public toilets. In the end snuck into a Scandia hotel and went there (we figured we've given Scandia plenty of money over the past couple of weeks). Then had a cheese roll for lunch.  Went up to see the ski jump, which was in use!  Even with no snow - they just slide down slippery plastic.

Then carried on to Oslo. The traffic here (that we've seen of it) is pretty awful.

Got to our hotel and checked in. The hotel is literally on top of the station concourse. The room is a comfortable temperature, but the decor is a little disturbing - a dude beating up a lion (well a human body with a lion head - weird weird weird).

Then headed out again. Firstly we went to the station to check out the process for getting to the airport on Wednesday. Then we went down to the Opera house (pretty, but not as pretty as ours), checked out Noah's Ark (a theatre on a barge) and then went to look for some dinner. Ended up at the cathedral cafe with some others. Had a reindeer pizza, although there wasn't much meat on it.

Then back for the nightly ritual.

Woke up in the middle of the night for an hour last night. Dunno why. Other than the static electricity I was comfortable enough, just not sleeping.

Breakfast was pretty decent. After breakfast went for a walk down to the river to photograph the Lumberjack Candle bridge.

After breakfast we had a tour of the town of Rovaniemi with a local guide. She took us to the Lutheran church in town and we got a very detailed explanation of the fresco there.

Then we headed up north of town to Santa's "office" and the whole tourist kitsch. It's advertised as being on the Arctic Circle, which I thought was pretty cool at the time.

Except.

It's not.

Not only is it a couple of kilometres south of the Arctic circle, it's not even on a horizontal line to match up with any meridian. If you look at it on your favourite mapping application it's on quite a sharp diagonal.

But I didn't discover than until later.

In the meantime, they gave us some time to explore Santa's village there. We wandered into Santa's "office" where you can have your photo taken with the "real" Santa. Mum wanted to do it so we did. Me, I took one look at the prices and declared it *completely* ridiculous. It was 30 Euro for a large print. 35 Euro for five small prints. Or 40 Euro for a digital copy of the photo.

What. The. F@#k. ?????

How can they get away with charging 40 Euro for a digital file that they don't even have to expend any media on?? It's criminal. Needless to say I was not amused. I said I'd given them 10 Euro for the file. The girl wasn't amused. I'm sure she gets it all the time. I certainly wouldn't be doing that job.

Not only that, but you could tell the queue lasted for hours at certain times of year. They had a whole huge setup for the queuing. What made it so bad was that you went in and sat with "Santa" but instead of just taking a photo he makes all this small talk, which later turns out you can buy as a video.

?!?!

If they wanted more money:
1) charge less for the photos
2) cut out the crap and just churn people through instead of making them wait forever

Anyways.

I'm not cynical at all.

Honest ;)

After that we had a wander through all the little souvenir shops which was fun.

Got back to the hotel and given a small lunch break so I had Subway. Because it was across the road. So sue me.

Then we headed out again for the first of our optional tours for the day.

The first stop was the Arktikum, a museum of Arctic life. We had over an hour with the guide which was good, but then only got twenty minutes of self exploration of the museum. Ridiculous.

The second stop was a "pioneer farm" which was an old family farm house which had been preserved and turned into a museum. That was a great experience too, but again, ended with only a super short time to explore all the stuff there. Frustrating.

Once back in town again there was a couple of hours to kill before dinner, so mum and I went down to the river to see the bridge, then ended up doing the whole bridge to bridge walk. Whoops.

Then we had the next optional tour, which was out to a reindeer farm. We got to see one week old baby reindeer which were so adorable, and got to feed some young male reindeer. Then we headed up to dinner which was reindeer with mashed potato and berries. Quite tasty and quite a lovely evening.

Then back to the hotel to do computer stuff.

As it turns out, we did actually cross the Arctic circle tonight when we went to the reindeer farm.  I saw a sign on the road, and later confirmed it on the map.  So I have actually been to the arctic :)

So the hotel we had in Helsinki had these weird bathroom walls that were just glass with a bit of paint on them which plenty of see through spaces to see in from the outside. Managed to convince the thermostat to go down to about 19C (not sure that it actually did) so slept relatively well. In fact we had an early night (21:30) and slept through til 6:30!

Breakfast didn't start til 7am though, and they wanted to leave at 8am, so it was a very rushed breakfast for us (the room was pretty chaotic too, but we went to a second room which was a lot quieter).

Then it was driving driving driving north out of Helsinki.

We had a morning pitstop. I got frustrated with the people sitting in front of us (and will be for the entire trip) who just fuss around when the coach stops and block everyone else getting off the coach. Even the dude's wife was like "stand aside to let people out" but he didn't care :( I hate people.

More driving. Finland is like 74% forest so that's pretty much all we saw all day. Mostly young growth by the look of it as timber is Finland's primary industry.

After the first pitstop they put on some Sibelius. The first track being Finlandia. Except our tour guide will. not. shut. up. He talked for about 80 of the 90 minutes of the first leg this morning and as soon as Finlandia came on after the pitstop he talked just about all the way through it. Sad times.

Lunch was at a similar roadside combo of supermarket and cafeteria.

When we got to Kuopio in the afternoon we went up the tower overlooking the lakes and the town. I couldn't be stuffed waiting in the huge queue for the lifts, so walked up the steps! All 380 or so of them (mum counted)!

Drove into town and to the hotel. We actually got a room with a view of the town square which is pretty cool! And our room is 451.. how cool is that?! ;)

Dumped our stuff, accosted the bellboy and took our own bags up to our rooms, then went for a wander around the town. Lovely weather and we walked all the way down to the lake and back.

Tried to get onto the internet but my laptop refuses to connect to the wifi. The phones connect just fine though. Go figure. Also, turns out this hotel (and apparently the next one) has a free guest laundry. Maybe that's a thing in Finland. Good to know.

Since we couldn't listen to Finlandia on the coach, I found a beautiful video on YouTube (on my phone since the laptop won't connect - sad times) with Finnish landscapes and animals - just lovely.

Dinner was in the steakhouse downstairs in the hotel. Entree was a delicious vegetable soup (mostly tomato). Mains was "crispy beef brisket" whih was just amazing. So tender and tasty. Dessert was a nice enough pannacotta.

I've had something under my left upper eyelid since this afternoon and it's super frustrating :(:(:(  edit: managed to get rid of it before bed.

So the day started grey and rainy and miserable. Decent breakfast at the hotel then we headed out into the rain.

We had a tour with a local guide. Got driven around Stockholm to the town hall, where they have the receptions for the Nobel prizes. That was all quite nice.

Then to a spot to see the old town from another island.

Then into the old town for a walking tour.

By then it was mid morning and the program was done for the day.

Yeup.

There was an optional tour to go out to the Vasa museum so we decided to go on that. I'd toyed with the idea of doing it myself, as it would have been a lot cheaper. But then we would have had to negotiate public transport. But given how little time we had there on the tour, I'm regretting that. It would have been better to have done it ourselves and not been so rushed. We could easily have spent a lot more time there :(

Got dumped in town and told to entertain ourselves. We really had no idea what to do so ended up wandering at random. We thought about going up a temporary tower thing, but they wouldn't take credit cards (and we had no cash) so gave up on that idea. Just wandered around at random. Bit silly really.

Got picked up at 3pm and driven to our hotel for the night - the Baltic ferry the Silja Serenade. Quite nice for a ferry. Also probably the biggest passenger vessel I've been on. And it has free wifi!!

We went for a wander around the ship before the 5pm dinner sitting. Quite a big buffet of food, although pretty chaotic. After dinner we went to the Grease stage show. We'd gotten seats once we got on board, advertised as "obstructed" viewing. We expected to be behind people, but still be able to see. But no, you literally could not see the stage at all. So we moved to somewhere we could. Mum sat on the floor and I stood for the entire thing. Silly really. Although it did mean we missed pretty much all of the view - either while at dinner or while in the show.

Pretty late by bed time, and we lose an hour moving into Finland's time zone.

So this room has a thermostat on the wall but it doesn't actually do anything. Had to keep the window open all night to get any cool air. Which means a massive picture window letting in the light super early. I'm dreading getting further north where the sun doesn't actually set and sweltering because we can't open windows because we need to block out the light. What a strange thing to be concerned about - overheating past the arctic circle. There's another lady on the trip (from Brisbane) who feels the same way.

Fairly good breakfast range. Although I wasn't in the mood for being sociable with anyone.

We had to be out the door at 8:00 this morning. On the coach we went through the whole introduction and safety spiel. Then headed off at nearly 8:30.

We had a local guide for the morning and we drove around Copenhagen looking at some things.

Our first get-off stop was Amalienborg palace (we didn't get to go in), just for a photo stop.

Then up to The Little Mermaid. Going first thing in the morning meant we were looking straight into the sun which was a bit of a poo. Not that my photos from last time were much better.

Yet again I'm reminded how different tours are to doing things yourself. I think I crammed about five times as much in my three hour walk around last time as I did today on the tour.

Although today we did get to go into Christiansborg Palace which was very cool.

And then we were done for the day.

Yup, we did three things and were done by 10:15am.

!?

They left us to have some free time, or could get dropped back to the hotel if we wanted. This afternoon there was an optional excursion. For 51 Euro. So basically we pay for an expensive tour (not nearly as expensive as Outback Sprit though) and just get left to our own devices and if you want to see more things it costs extra. Seems a little rude to me.

Mum decided to go on the optional tour, starting at 12:30, so we filled in some time walking around until then. Went up to the round tower and went up it, then up to the botanical gardens, although really didn't have time to look around there because we had to get back so mum could start the tour. But I really needed some down time so had decided not to go. After leaving mum, I watched bits of the Copenhagen Carnivale which was wandering through town, then tried to find something to eat. Ended up grabbing something in 7-Eleven (not the first one I came to because I couldn't get any service).

Then walked back to the hotel where I washed my jeans, backed up my photos and had a little lie down. Even slept a little!

At 6pm we headed out for an optional dinner. 65 Euro, to a little restaurant in the old town. It was a "Christmas" dinner, so there was roast pork and various sides, and a rice pudding dessert. And a couple of drinks :) The pork was up at least in the top ten of pork I've had - lovely and tender with lovely crispy crackling. Yum!!

Then down to the canal to have a shot of Aquavit (weird right!) and then back to the hotel.

Last night we set the room thermostat to 5C. It barely got cooler than ambient temperature. And couldn't open the window either.

Breakfast had a bigger selection of food, on account of being a much bigger hotel. They had potato and mushrooms which was nice.

Hopped on the 7:36 #635 bus to the terminals (it was super packed :( ).

Got to terminal 2 and there was a Subway (I really felt like Subway for dinner last night but we didn't find it - doh!).

Used the machines to check out suitcases through and that worked pretty well. Went through security, where they got me to turn the camera on and take a photo to make sure it really was a camera. And got a tarmac tour to get to the plane.

The flight was on a CRJ-900 which I've never been on before. Much like a 717. And if I'd known that I would have tried for a seat much further forward in front of the wing. But it was ok because the engines are further back. Except the windows were full of condensation which frosted up and made photographs pretty terrible. No snackages on the plane (unless you buy them) so just had some water. The south of Germany was all cloudy, but it cleared up as we went further north. Flew over the Malmo bridge which was super cool :)

Got to Copenhagen but our bags didn't come up the appointed carousel. And we weren't the only ones missing bags. But they finally finally came up - they must have lost a trolley along the way somewhere. Got some cash out, then waited for our transfer to the hotel from our tour group.

We got a 15th floor room, but sadly facing away from the city. No aircon to speak of either. But the window opens so hopefully it'll cool down overnight.

When we got here I needed to grab something light for lunch. Except I've said before, Copenhagen is *huge*, and it took a full half an hour to walk from our hotel to somewhere with light food options. After walking up and down a pedestrian section near the town hall I gave up and chose the Scottish Restaurant, because you can get small meals there (I just had some fries with mayo).

By the time I got back to the hotel, two hours had passed :(:( So much for a quiet afternoon catching up on blogging, backing up photos etc. Only got an hour before we had to head down for the tour starting meeting and dinner.

Dinner was ok - a bit of a buffet, so could regulate what we ate a bit better. They also included a couple of drinks, which may be the last I have on this trip on account of the price of everything here.

After dinner we headed out again - up to Tivoli Gardens. This was originally on the itinerary for this tour, but in recent week wasn't on the itinerary for the tour on their website. So I was a bit annoyed that we'd paid to go see and wouldn't get to (it's ~20AUD just to get in). So that was pretty good that we did in fact get to go in. Had a lovely wander through the park. Wanted to go on some rides but it was all too complicated with bags and stuff and not really having enough time. Even got some freshly made fairy floss which you can't get in Australia anymore, you can only get packed stuff. So that was all very nice and it was all very pretty as the lights came on.

Except.

We got back to the entrance one minute late (on account of *hoards* of people coming in the gates) and there was *noone* there. So we thought we'd misunderstood the meeting place. Mum stayed there while I went to the other place I thought maybe we should have been meeting. Twice. But no. They'd all fricken gone off without us. So now we're going to have a reputation with the rest of the tour (forty fricken people) as being people to be late and hold everyone up. Completely pissed off about it all.

And it's late.

Woke up 5am. But I was stressing about getting washing done and having breakfast before getting into town by 9:15am. So I wasn't getting back to sleep.

So we got up and headed down to the laundromat. Except they must have forgotten to turn the alarm off because this siren kept going off. I was super tired and hungry and the loud noise made my brain explode. We don't think we managed to get any detergent into the machine. Sigh.

Took the dried washing back to the hotel, had breakfast, but I was still super tired and grumpy. Finished getting ready and checked out, leaving the bags and the car at the hotel.

Then walked into town. We got to the Festspielhaus at 9:30, which does indeed tour the Felsenreitschule.

Except.

They don't allow photos. At least at the moment because they're setup for some festival which starts tomorrow. Well I wasn't going to pay 7 Euro to not be able to take photos, especially when it would have taken up an hour of perfectly good sunlight. Maybe next time.

And that's another thing. The damned weather forecasts are completely useless. They predicted rain for today, but it didn't come until much later in the day, and even then not much while we were still there.

So we walked up behind the festspielhaus and over the ridge to the other side. Walked along Nonnberger Hauptstrasse to find where they all had the carriage ride. Then all the way up to Nonnberg abbey. Went into the church this time which I didn't do last time.

Then back down into the old town to all the platzes where various bits of the movie were filmed, and the Mozartsteg.

Finally walked up to Kaputziner Closter to check out the view back to the old town.

Came back down and went to a place where I'd noticed earlier they sold Salzburger Nockerl, which mum had never heard of. So that was lunch (along with some cream of asparagus soup).

Went back to the hotel to pick up our bags, then headed back to Munich.

But with all the roadworks and just general traffic, the trip took about four hours :(:(:(

By the time we'd checked into the hotel, gotten petrol for the car, returned the car, saw about checking into our flight tomorrow and finding something to eat it was after 9pm :(:( So much for an early night :(:(:( Fortunately I didn't manage to bingle the car, so that was a huge relief. Driving on the wrong side of the road is super stressful! Who knew!

The checkin process was super painful. Terminal 2 at Munich airport only has checkin counters for Lufthansa. And its partner airlines in the fine print. So that was a little confusing. So we went to try checking in with the machines, but it both of our names up incorrectly, then refused to let us checkin. None of the human-operated counters showed general checkins, it was all just "bag drop" stuff. We asked the local Lufthansa help and she just said we just had to get in line with the bag drop queue. Really not a very user-friendly process.

By the time we got everything sorted and caught a bus back to the hotel, it was 9:20pm :(

So my day began at ~3:30am when the guttering dude rang. Grunt. Only got a little bit more sleep after than (maybe half an hour).

Breakfast range was even smaller today, but still perfectly adequate.

After breakfast, shutting down the computer, it decided for the second day in a row to install windows updates. Grunt. So had to cart the laptop around because I didn't have time to put it in my suitcase before we left.

Had a morning pitstop near Baden Baden, then onto Strasbourg.

Firstly we had a driving tour of the city, then a walking tour. Quite a pretty little city. Went inside St Thomas Church, had some lunch and some free time, then into the cathedral and up to the bell tower lookout. Afterwards went for a walk back to where we started to get up on top of the bridge gate thingie to look at the towers in the sun.

Then to the hotel. But by the time we'd walked to the coach and driven around the city, we'd actually have been quicker to walk to the hotel. I'd previously looked up local laundromats and found one very close to the hotel, so popped down there before dinner to wash all my clothes.

Dinner at the hotel was ok, but not the best meal so far.

And this room is HOT. They had the heater on when we arrived !?!? so turned that off and opened the window (no aircon at all). But it's still hot.  And the bathroom has these heating pipes going through it that an't be turned off :(:(:( Sleeping tonight might be a challenge.

5:37 wakeup. Blerf.

At breakfast I stocked up on veggies to make up for yesterday's lack thereof.

After breakfast mum and I walked up to the university church to get some photos of it in the morning sun.

Our first stop for the day was Colditz Castle. We had a guided tour of the place so got to see things like the solitary confinement cell, the chapel, and the tunnel some French officers dug through solid rock.

Stopped for lunch at a roadside rest house.

After lunch continued on to Dresden. I was really really missing the sweetie at this point, on account of last being here with him on our honeymoon. We had a walking tour of the town with a local guide, and got to see a couple of things we didn't see last time (like inside the palace courtyard which is now a museum complex, and inside the Church of our Lady). But there was a heap of things we didn't get to see, like even a basic walkby of a lot of the buildings, and we didn't even get to go down to the river to have a look. It really highlighted the difference between doing things on a tour and doing things yourself. It made me wonder what else we've been missing out on by doing tours. In some ways I actually felt quite ripped off that we didn't get to see as much as we should. So that and missing the sweetie made me feel somewhat depressed.

Headed back to Leipzig, and were a bit late for a 6pm service at Thomaskirche. All in German of course, but the organ playing was nice.

Then on to dinner. We went to the Auerbachs Keller which was pretty cool. The food was pretty good. We had a small salad for entree, a very tasty chicken and mushroom dish with rosti, and ice cream and cherry sauce for dessert. The problem was it was all very slow, and by the time they brought out a birthday cake for two of the guys, we didn't leave the restaurant til after 9:30, getting back to the hotel at 10pm :(:(:( Far far far too late when I have so much to do in the evenings. In the end I just downloaded my photos and gps, but left the blogging til the morning.

Slept mostly ok last night (although woke up at 5am). The pillows compress down to wafer thinness so had to use both and keep floofing them up. The sink isn't as good for clothes washing either - quite a bit smaller. The breakfast buffet is quite decent.

Today we headed back north to go to Wittenberg. Martin Luther spent many years there and it was full all sorts of history.

We started at the eastern end of town and made our way west.

So first stop was the little area at the edge of town where Martin Luther burnt the papal bull concerning his excommunication in 1520.

Then into the Lutherhaus which is where Luther lived for much of his life and includes his remarkably well preserved living room and a bunch of paintings by Cranach the Elder.

A couple of houses down is Melanchton's house which has been remodelled on the inside over the years.

By this time we'd reached the main market square and it was lunch time so we had an hour's break. I waited a little while for the sun to come out on the Rathaus, then we went to find somewhere warm and a toilet. Even in the shopping centres you have to pay to go to the toilet here. Wrong. So wrong. Had some hot chocolate and shared a donut and warmed up.

After the lunch break we carried on.

First stop was the main city church.

Then had a look at the outside of the Cranach house.

And finally reached the Castle church where Luther is said to have posted his 95 theses to the door. Sadly the church is closed off for renovations at the moment for the 500th anniversary of the reformation next year, but we could at least see the doors that have the theses in bronze.

The whole town tour went from 10:30am to 3:00pm so it was quite a long day even though we only covered about 1.5km.

Back to Leipzig and we got dropped off at the western edge of town and left to fend for ourselves for a couple of hours. Tried to go up the tower at St Thomas' but it's only open Friday/Saturday. So did a meandering wander up to the Hauptbahnhof, then back through the old town.

Dinner was at a Czech restaurant. Nice enough, but bread-heavy and almost no vegetables in sight. There was a vegetable soup (with just a few slivers of veggies) and bread, a beef stew with bread (only beef, no veggies), and a sweat bread roll with custard and cream. Too. Much. Bread. And not enough veggies.

Then back to the hotel to do the evening routine.

Breakfast as usual this morning, then checked out.

Our first stop was in Potsdam. I'd been here with the sweetie eight years ago. Last time we hired bikes and got around *heaps* of the palaces and things to see. We also had a brilliant day for it. Today it was grey. :(

Our first stop was the Glienicker Brücke - "Bridge of Spies" - for a quick photo stop.

Then onto Sans Souci palace. The vines hadn't come out yet so it was all a little grey. But still quite pretty and there were bulbs already flowering in the gardens at the bottom.

Then they took us into town and dropped us off for some free time. We went into the Nikolai church because that was just there. Then mum and I went off for a walk. Got up to the Brandenburg Tor, then back up Brandenburger strasse to Nauener Tor, back through the dutch village, and back to the coach.

Most people slept on the coach ride south to Leipzig. I stayed awake and talked to the sweetie for a bit. Had a brief toilet stop (by now this is the third toilet I've had to pay for today :(:( ) and continued on, getting here at nearly 3:30pm.

In Leipzig we met a local guide for a walking tour of the old town. Highlights included the Thomas Church, the oldest coffee house in Germany, the market square and the Nikolai Church.

Then to the hotel. Not a bad room, although the view is a little boring - the roof of the atrium!

Went out for dinner tonight to a restaurant in the old town. Had some mushroom soup, some sausage and potato, and this weird (but nice) cake thing with apple sauce.