The Comical Side of the Christmas Market Travels

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There is always  a comical side to traveling – those photos I snap that are strange, unexplainable, don’t seem to fit in anywhere else or are just funny.   Such as Santa standing here at the stand that sells the Gluhwein – or Mulled Wine as we in the US call it.   Or how about…..

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New Style of Sleigh?Pickle Art in Austria

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Sandwich in McDonalds

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Art Display in Munich

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German Hot Tub????

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Grim Reaper Tree

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Teddy Bears drink in Germany?

Last Day in Munich, Germany

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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Well after hours spent on planes and in airports, I am back home now – but I can’t let the postings of this European Christmas Markets Trip go unfinished…thus….

My last day in Munich.  A day just to wonder, explore and shop and make sure I don’t  miss  something  I would regret. Munich is a beautiful , busy city, fun to stroll  and surprisingly, I didn’t get lost. I could always look up and recognize a church steeple or the city hall in the distance to ground myself.   Even more delightfully surprising, I stumbled upon two more Christmas Markets that I hadn’t seen before.  I also searched out two churches that  I wanted to see and I went through the Residenz , the palace where the Wittelsbachs resided, the ruling family of Bavaria for 700 years. That tour was 80 rooms. I logged 8 miles on my pedometer this day ( most of it in this palace I believe) – my record for the trip.

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Asam Church, Baroque style built in 1740.

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St Cajetan’s Church, built in 1690

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.The Residenz Festival Banquet Hall, 200 could dine here.

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The last of my Christmas Markets. : (

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Christmas Markets at the Sendlinger City Gate, built in 1318.

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I love the Gingerbread cookies!

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German  Nativity Pyramids

Day Trip to Mad King Ludwig’s Herrenchiemsee Castle

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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Our last day trip  and we had blue skies and sun, though still a bit  chilly. First a train ride from Munich to Priem a Chiemsee, then catch a boat ride  to the island  and a 20 minute pleasant  walk to the  Herrenchiemsee Castle.  The setting was beautiful –snow topped mountains suround most of the crystal clear lake and resorts and homes dot the lakeside.

Mad Ludwig  loved to build his castles and this one  was just as grand and ornate as the others. But, as the story goes, he ran out of money and died mysteriously, so it was never finished. The rooms that were completed were ……an optical sensory overload  I’d say – but this was also the castle of a King.  Herrenchiemsee was inspired by the Palace at Versailles, including the Hall of Mirrors.  This Hall,  can be described, but  can never be fully imagined until you see it with your own eyes.  Ludwig also had a “tub” that took 8 hours to fill if he wanted to bathe and a dining table that could be lowered to the kitchen below to be set and then raised back up to him so he would not have to see the servants. It did take about 30 minutes for the lowering and raising each time so I guess he ate a lot of cold food.

Photos were not allowed inside the castle but Internet is the next best thing.

http://www.herren-chiemsee.de/englisch/n_palace/index.htm

The day was an adventure!

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The Depot

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Sure, I understand the boat schedule…

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Chiemsee Lake

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Misletoe in the Trees

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View along the Way

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Detail at the top of the Castle

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photo copied off the internet

Nurnberg 2011 Christmas Markets

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Another Santa Dog!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

This is probably my last official 2011 Christmas Market posting, as our trip is nearing an end and our last days are planned with other activities.  But Nurnberg’s Christmas Market is known as the biggest, oldest  and best of them all.  I will agree, it was terrific.  It was huge with 180 stalls, a wide variety of items for sale,   lots of yummy food and an over abundance of  the same mulled wine whose aroma fills the air. Since we went early in the day, I  did miss the decorated lights at night time, but  it was also definitely nicer to browse when it was less crowded. Of course, I also had no problem finding  a few things to purchase also.  Which means I will have to decide which of my clothes I will pitch  to make it all fit in my suitcase…….

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The Mulled Wines – smells good but its really sweet!

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Nurnberg has a Katie Store too!!!

 

 

 

Day Trip To Nurnberg, Germany

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Holy Ghost Hospital

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Nurnberg, Germany  is a city you have to see.   While I love to travel and love everywhere I go,  for a daytrip, especially  for strolling at this time of year, this is one of the coolest cities.   The Old Town is beautiful and has  lots of interesting buildings, a river that runs through it, bridges and tidbits that will catch your eye, including 3 miles of a wall surrounding  it that you can walk..   It is a photographer’s dream.   Now, if it would  have been a little warmer ( it was freezing),  a little less crowded, and had I more time,  I think my photos could have turned out better, but, until you can see this city with your own eyes, I’ll post for you my best and you’ll just have to take my word for it – don’t miss this city.

 BTW, this is also the same city, that the famous Nurnberg Trials  took place after WWII, but we didn’t have the time to see that side of the city this trip. 

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Does this building look like it has a face?

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St. Lawrence Church

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The church’s choir pews. 

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Ho Ho Ho, See if you can spot me at the Markets,,,,

Munich Museums and Dinner with Corrrinnneeeyyy

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Monday , December 12, 2011

Guess what street I was looking for when I came across this sign?  If you have ever seen a map of Munich, there is not one straight street  and each street changes names frequently with no rhyme or reason. So if you are looking for some place- you just kind of walk in that general direction and hope for the best.  On the flip side, that also makes for some interesting walks. 

Today was a day for museums  but also the day I met up with my  much missed adopted daughter  for dinner, Corrinneeyy.  Yes, that really is her name.  Corrinneeyy moved here to Munich from the U.S.,  so I don’t get to see her much. Tonight was a real treat to get together with her, relax and enjoy a meal,  conversation, laughs and catch up. Plus it was Corrinneeyy’s birthday!! What fun!!

Happy Birthday Again Corrinneeyy!

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As for the museums, I went through the New Art Museum ( Neue Pinakothek ) and thoroughly enjoyed it and  brought  a beautiful silk scarf from the gift shop afterwards. Then I went  through the Deutsch Museum  and enjoyed the collection of sail boats, ship models and airplanes. I also walked through what seemed to be miles of mines that replicated how the mining  industry was set up and operated.  It was too realistic  for my taste and I  decided I could never be  a miner.  It’s closed in and dark. No brainer there. Now just walk even this fake one and see how you start to feel uncomfortable, irritable, mine cave- ins come to mind, so does prayer and you keep hoping  every next turn will be the end of it. Interesting? Maybe. But not what I would call fun. Once I found My way out of the mines, I got the heck out of the whole museum. Enough culture for the day.

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Mother from Vito by Riedel 1848

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Morning After Story Night by Dahl 1819

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My Mining Buddies

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dachau Memorial Grounds, Dachau, Germany

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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sobering day. I toured what they call today the Dachau Memorial Grounds, place of the first Nazi concentration camp, opened in 1933 and in existance until it was liberated in 1945. Of the 30 barricks that once existed, only two are standing today  but the foundation of the other 28 remain.Each barrick had 4 rooms and each room  was designed to hold 50 people, but by the time the war ended there were 500 people in each room.

An abbreviated and informative  account of the history of that time, Hilter and his rise to power,  WWII  and not only about Dachau, but about why so many other camps ( 400 in all)  were also opened was given.  I had a great guide, Nicola,  through Radius Tours. lt reminded me how much I  appreciate the USA.

The stories I heard were not for the weak of heart. 

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Prisoners were given a number and color coded as to why they were there. 

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the beds

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10 toilets per barrick

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1 of the 2 still remaining barricks

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the foundations of the other barricks

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watch towers with electric fences to prevent escapes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas Markets in Bamberg, Germany

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Saturday, December 10, 2011

Looks like Neptune is lecturing the Santa Clones…..”You’d better watch out….”

Bamberg’s Christmas Markets were not exactly up to par with the rest I have seen in other cities, none the less, there are  interesting tidbits to be found everywhere.   Hope these photos  make you smile  and remind you that just when you think you have seen it all……

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Sausages All Dressed Up For Christmas

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Characters Made Out of Figs.  Gives ” go figure” a new meaning……..

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Santa Dog

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And to all a Good Night….

 

 

A Day In Bamberg, Germany

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The Old Town Hall

  Saturday, December 10, 2011

Today was a whirlwind tour exploring Bamberg. With the short winter daylight and the 2 hour train ride each way from Munich, I didn’t have much time to see the city and the Christmas Markets of Bamberg but I put a brisk step in my walk and  gave it my best try.  First impression – Bamberg is beautiful and  much bigger than I expected.  The Christmas Markets were a little disappointing being much smaller than expected and selling some strange items that I would not shop for in this setting – such as panties, ( seriously – the plain white kind),  kitchen gadgets and purses for example.  Items such as those do nothing to add to my Christmas spirit.   But the Old Town, which survived WWII intact, made up for any short comings. The Old Town has a  charming medieval feel on a hilly terrain with surprising pictuesque  views every time you turn a corner. Plus Bamberg also has a Katie Wohlfahrt Christmas Shop -a treat in itself. Bring your credit card (Or shop online.)  You will not leave empty handed . I also had a wonderful German lunch of potatoe soup and the day was so mild I sat outside to eat and people watched at the same time.  On the way back to the train station, I found a DM Store which sells the brand of Balea face creams and such that I love and they are inexpensive.  I bought a bag full! So I were successful with making the best of our time.

.Bamberg  Christmas Markets photos are in the next blog…….

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Frescoes on the Old Town Hall

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St. Peter and St George Cathedral built in 1237

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Little Venice in Bamburg

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A Shifty Looking Character…..

Munich Christmas Markets 2011

 

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Friday , December 9, 2011

The Christmas Markets are a requirement, along with the Hofbrauhaus, for the first day in Munich. I’ve been told by my 2nd daughter Corrinneeyy, that Munich has many Christmas Markets. The Market I went to today was in Marienplatz. I enjoyed it totally.  Also, there was a department  store  with the greatest window display of  dozens of  darling motorized teddy bears  (and various other stuffed animals) set up in a little town display.  It even had a “tourist bear” holding a map.  Of course, that’s not me – I prefer to get lost, or rather I can get lost even with a map.   : )

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Store Window Display

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