|I love serendipities (finding valuable or agreeable things not sought for)! Ben and I had many of them today. Our day began with the best breakfast of the trip, a sumptuous buffet breakfast with eggs, bacon, sausage, fresh fruit and a big selection of German breads. We headed out to Schiltace, passing many cute Bavarian towns with their half-timbered houses, many painted with bright colors and cute shutters. We had read that Schiltach , sitting at the foot of the Black Forest and on the banks of the Schiltach and Kinzig Rivers was a perfect Bavarian town and it did not disappoint. It was the cutest little town we have seen on our trip. The meticulously restored half timbered-houses, which had once belonged to tanners, merchants and raft builders, looks down on the gently flowing streams in the town. The thrift, pansies, geraniums, and tulips were blooming and along with the colorful houses, made for a riot of color. We parked in front of a small bakery so we bought some pastries for later in the day. The loaves of bread were so pretty stacked on the shelves---but reluctantly passed them up. Ben and I both agreed that this is a town we would like to spend a few days rather than minutes.
At this point we were undecided about our next destination. This is the beauty of having no schedule and just taking a turn in the road as it comes. We put in Friedrichshafen, a city on the shore of Lake Constance in southern Germany. This is a large lake and since we are lake lovers, decided to check it out. It was a great decision.
On the road we saw beautiful, huge farms, dairy cattle and horses. We even stopped at a farm that had pick your own tulips for 1Stuck(piece) for 0,45EU which would be $1.22. It was the honor system and you just put your money in a locked box at the stand. We passed many other cute towns with no time to explore. Ben and I wanted to mail some boxes home with dirty clothes, clothes that are too warm and some purchases we had made. Things like mailing a package are so simple at home but when you are in a country where you do not speak or read the language, just finding the place to mail a package is difficult. When we arrived in Friedrichshafen, we immediately say a DHL office and knew that they shipped. We went in and one of the cashiers spoke English so we bought boxes, parked in a very nice and clean (unlike ours at home) parking garage next door and proceeded to unpack our suitcases and fill the boxes. We carried them back to our English-speaking friend and mailed them to 176 Taylors Cove Road. They will arrive home the same day that we will. SOOOO easy!! The town square reminded us of Sonoma, California so as we have done there; we bought a Coke and snack and ate it in the square.
As we left, little did we realize what an awesome 2 hour ride we had ahead of us. We had set our GPS for scenic routes and it took us seriously. We immediately began switch backs one after another through the most beautiful forests and mountains you have ever see --- very much like our Shenandoah Valley but more mountainous. The smell of the evergreens and wildflowers were wonderful. Before we got into the towns, we guessed their size by the number of church steeples we saw - our favorites being the small towns with one or two. As we topped a long hill the huge, snow covered mountains of the Alps were right in front of us. What an awesome sight. We were in and out of these until we reached Füssen.
Füssen is a Bavarian town in Germany, just north of the Austrian border and the beginning of the Romantic Road which runs to Wurzburg. It’s 350 kms is the most popular touring route in Germany. The nearby castles of Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau are the highlight of many a southern Germany trip. Our plan is to see Neuchwanstein tomorrow!! We got a peek of it tonight from our hotel. We had a Bavarian dinner at Restaurant Helmerhof, owned by a local family and very authentic. Many roses today and no thorns!!