- Starting our European Cavalcade – leaving England
- European Cavalcade – Amsterdam
- The Rhine Cruise
- Heidelberg in about one hour
- Now for a walk in the Black Forest
- A quick photo opportunity at the Rhine Falls
- Lucerne for a few nights
- Our landmark in Lucerne
- Ascending Mount Stanserhorn
- Loving Lake Lucerne (plus a great little shop in Picton)
- Lichtenstein is not what Frankenstein does with his tongue!
- The Wilten Basilica, Innsbruck, Austria and the Bon Alpina Hotel
- Innsbruck in Austria
- Fair Verona
- Apologies… and into Venice
- The paths through Venice: September 2015
- The courtyard of the Doge’s Palace, Venice
- Inside the Doge’s Palace, Venice #Venice #Costsaver #Trafalgar
- The Museum in the Doge’s Palace, Venice #TrafalgarTours
- Our first day in #Rome
Today I continue sharing with you my Trafalgar Costsaver Tour “European Cavalcade” as we sweep briefly into Germany’s Black Forest. But before I do so, I want to take this opportunity to encourage you to visit the blog site of Dani. She is a 35 year old science nerd and I feel that a lot of you regulars here may relate to her. The post I have pointed you towards is where she is reintroducing herself.
Anyway, sharing the love aside, today I speak about the Black Forest.
First let me take you way, way back to my enchanted youth in the 1970s. Ah – such an idyllic time for insane television. In Australia in the late 70s, on the ABC at 6:30 each weeknight, the Goodies was aired. This crazy English comedy ignited the brains of my generation (as did Monty Python, Hitchhiker’s Guide, Kenny Everett, and so many other shows), so that lunchtimes were spent at school practically reciting the scripts of previous night’s shows. One such episode of the Goodies was called the Pirate Radio Station, and in it the titular radio station only had one record to play: A walk in the Black Forest. And so through this eminent piece of culture (cough) I first learnt of this place.
Naturally when the tour bus brought Nicole, Rhiannon and myself here I knew (yes, I just knew) that I must (MUST!) recite a least a bit of the Goodies here!
But that would have to wait, for the tour guide would have us first explore Hofgut Sternen near Triberg (see Google map below).
Hofgut Sternen is a quaint little village primarily famous for two things. Firstly, Marie Antoinette stopped here overnight on her way to marry the ill-fated Louis XVI. To be honest we did not see any of evidence of this, so we just had to take the tour guide’s word for this (and then later Google it). The second famous thing is that this is home to the world’s largest free standing cuckoo clock (Googling this showed that the world is full of such claims – so who knows the truth?). Anyway, we waited around for the clock to strike and behold, a giant cuckoo did indeed appear, much to our delight.
After this we wandered a bit, examining the outsides of the buildings.
Naturally I had to take photos of flowers.
Inside one of the buildings we found a shop that sold all the traditional paraphernalia of the region. I loved the walls of cuckoo clocks, but also the demonstration of how they are made.
Nicole also had the task of picking a souvenir here for her father. A beer stein was decided upon, mostly due to Ray’s fondness for that brew. And began the epic that Nicole calls examining the wares before buying. I swear that if Nicole had married an ancient Anglo-Saxon bard then the tale of Beowulf would have been supplanted by the story of Nicole’s great beer stein decision. Here is a picture of Rhiannon during the experience, as her mother chuckles away.
But there was more beer stein hunting to endure.
By the way, notice that giant stein in the foreground. I called that Franken-stein, because it was a great monster of a thing.
Once the present was bought, I encouraged the family to taste the local cuisine – Black Forest Cake naturally. It was even made with cherry schnapps.
And it tasted as good as it looks.
Well, we had bought and we had eaten. Only one thing remained: a walk in the Black Forest. Behind the little village we spied a track meandering under a railway bridge and into the forest. We followed it.
As we approached the bridge an old steam log-cutter appeared off to our right and Rhiannon took the opportunity to examine it. This was a bit of a tribute to the town’s history.
Another few steps and the whiff of beasts became apparent. Luckily Rhiannon knew just how to react to these denizens of the Black Forest’s outskirts.
After a while, curiosity satisfied and goats fed, we continued. I turned to look back once we crossed under the bridge, but the town was gone already.
What exciting adventures awaited us? My mind tripped back to childhood stories as told by the Brothers Grimm and for a moment I looked around for a stray wood cutter should we need one. But no, I was being silly.
The Forest, once within its confines, was magical. The above photo captures it well. Streams gurgled past us too.
And I began to quote the Goodies.
But it was over all too quickly. We needed to return to our coach and head off to the next destination. So we said a fond “Auf Wiedersehen” to the place and went on our way.
I will say this though, it gave me a lot of artistic ideas.
Anyway, that’s all for today. Thanks for reading :)