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Thread: A five-day weekend through Germany's Romantic Road and Black Forest...

  1. #16
    Registered User travisgill's Avatar
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    Romantic Road, Germany, Day 3 - Sunday, 29 Apr 2018:


    Map of today's travels as we continued south along the Romantic Road.

    We wanted to get an early start on our day, so we woke up at 6:30 AM, packed camp, and headed the short distance to Dinkelsbühl. We arrived so early that even the residences of the town were still sleeping. It was relaxing to be able to walk around, explore narrow streets and gardens, and take pictures of this quiet medieval town.


    The central tower of the town of Dinkelsbühl.


    Right out if a fairytale!


    Love the colored buildings and shutter treatments to the white framed windows.


    It was nice to be able to walk around without crowds in the early morning and enjoy the parks and views.


    Springtime in Dinkelsbühl.


    A covered bridge now spans what was probably the moat around the city wall.


    A schwarze Katze (black cat) hanging around the rafters. Good luck??


    Cobblestone streets and tall buildings.

    Since it was Sunday, we tried our best to find our church so we could attend sacrament services. Just our luck! There was a church building only about 30 minutes away and it was just a little bit off the path of the Romantic Road. As we approached the address, I was starting to doubt we had the right address. Our churches are normally located in residential areas and we were clearly in a commercial area with large warehouses. It turns out we were at the correct place and the church was inside a converted restaurant building. The service was in German and afterwards we had a chance to talk to the elder missionaries from England and Oregon and a visiting family from Idaho. They seemed impressed with our motorcycle adventure.


    We found our church! It is in one of the most interesting church buildings we have ever been to...


    ... apparently it was initially built as a restaurant but then when financing fell through, the LDS church purchased it and then converted it to a church.

    After church we returned to the Romantic Road and continued south to the next city of Nördlingen.


    (Picture borrowed and edited from www.bavaria.by)

    Nördlingen is definitely one of the more interesting towns on the Romantic Road - if not the world. To fully appreciate this town, you have to look at it from a bird's eye view which clearly shows Nördlingen situated entirely inside a massive meteorite crater 25 km across. The depression from the meteorite, believed to have formed some 14.5 million years ago, made a perfect circular ledge where a wall could be built around the town center.


    Another beautiful and sunny day in Bavaria!


    We passed by Harburg Castle long enough to eat a bit of lunch and launch the drone from a nearby park. This castle was built in the 11th century.


    As we proceeded south the fields slowly gave way to more wooded sections.

    The next town of Donauwörth also provided another pleasant and relaxing walk through the center of town and along a creek where we heard some of the most unique frog sounds we've ever heard. Apparently, a German croak is much different than an English croak?!


    Entering the town of Donauwörth.


    A bright red Vespa scooter would also be a great way to see the romantic road.


    More brightly colored buildings against a clear blue sunny sky in Donauwörth.


    One of the statutes decorating a bridge.


    Lovely lady in a lovely setting!


    A hansom church in Donauwörth.


    A sculpture of Mary on the church grounds.


    A unique and colorful door.


    Bavarian influence throughout Donauwörth.


    Leaving town via cobblestone streets.
    Last edited by travisgill; 05-24-2018 at 11:57 AM.
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  2. #17
    Registered User travisgill's Avatar
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    Romantic Road, Germany, Day 3 - Sunday, 29 Apr 2018 (continued…)

    Augsburg was the next town on the route. Although it was late in the afternoon we still got to see the Augsburg Cathedral, the Zentrum, and the Fuggerei. All interesting and offering lots of photographing opportunities.


    Entering the town of Augsburg.


    The entrance door of the Augsburg Cathedral, a Roman Catholic church founded in the 11th century in Romanesque style with 14th-century Gothic additions.


    The chapel of the Augsburg Cathedral.


    Prayer candles flicker in the darkened corners of the church.


    A carving of Mary and Jesus as a child. The cathedral is dedicated to the Virgin Mary.


    The southern clerestory has five stained glass windows dated to the late 11th-early 12th centuries, the oldest in Germany. Portraits of the prophets Jonah, Daniel, Hosea, Moses and David are depicted.


    The halls surrounding the main cathedral area.


    The ornate windows looking into the central garden area.


    The outside fountain has unique drains of bronzed fish heads.


    A town map made finding the popular sites easy. It was late in the day but we still found plenty of stuff to see.


    We even found a submarine in Augsburg!


    Ornate 16th-century bronze statue of the Roman emperor Augustus located in the central square of Augsburg.


    Augsburger Rathaus (Town Hall of Augsburg). The Goldener Saal, or Golden Hall, is the most impressive of the Rathaus's rooms.


    Love the ornate and lifelike craftsmanship that went into this 1620s building.

    Our last stop in Augsburg was Fuggerei. I found this area especially interesting.


    The Fuggerei is the world's oldest social housing complex still in use.


    The cost of entrance into this community costed €4...


    ...which cost more than 4.5 times the rent for a month to live here!...


    ...Yes, you heard correct! The rent to live here inside this community is the same as it costed when it was built in the 1520s - just one Rheinischer Gulden (88 euro cents) for an entire year...


    ...However it’s a exclusive membership - You must be a Roman Catholic and prove your faith and have become indigent without any outstanding debt...


    ...and be willing to have tourist come into your community to take pictures...


    ...of your religious statues...


    ...and your beautiful gardens, walls, and simple living.


    But all was not always so... The US Eighth Air Force bombed the Augsburg Messerschmitt works during the day on 25 February 1944. That night, RAF Bomber Command followed destroying a large part of the center of Augsburg.


    The Fuggerei was heavily damaged by the bombings of Augsburg during World War II, but has been rebuilt in its original style.

    I was reminded of the true cost of war in many of the places we visited in Germany. The staggering human cost of 70 million lives lost across Europe and Asia, from 1939 to 1945, should not be forgotten, regardless of what country or nationality you are:


    The Fallen of WW II by Neil Halloran.

    Back to the ride report and something more positive...

    Chantil noticed a city on the map called Kissing. Go figure, a city named Kissing on the Romantic Road? Anyhow, we stopped long enough at the entrance of the town to "kiss" under the sign. Awww.

    We wanted to make it to a campsite near the town of Landsberg am Lech but we were a bit behind schedule (too much kissing?) and the sun had already set. It would be well into darkness before we would make it... so we found a secluded forest road just off the roadway and set up our tent and sleeping bags. Although "wild" camping like this in Germany is frowned upon (Germans are rule followers to a tee), we would get an early start and be on our way south to the next town before anyone would even know we were there.

    Until tomorrow…
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  3. #18
    Excellent report and pics !!!!! Now I have to add Germany to my list !!!

  4. #19
    Registered User travisgill's Avatar
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    Romantic Road, Germany 🇩🇪 Day 4 - Monday, 30 Apr 2018:


    Map of today's travels to include the last section of the Romantic Road then to Triberg.


    Since we were wild camping, which is frowned upon in Germany, we made sure to get up early and get a move on before 6:30.


    The rain was just starting to sprinkle as we made our way back onto pavement.


    We found a grocery store with and attached bakery where we enjoyed some delicious pastries for breakfast.

    Shortly after leaving the bakery the rain stopped, the clouds lifted, and we had nearly blue skies for the rest of the day.

    Our first stop was The Pilgrimage Church of Wies - another UNESCO World Heritage Site. We enjoyed the quick walk around the property and a view of the elegant interior before making our way south.


    A nice view of the church from the walking pathway.


    The door knocker on the main entrance. I wonder how old this is?


    The altar is overwhelming with the incredible details and grandness of the entire structure.


    Elegant statues adorn the flanks of the chapel.


    The Wieskirche (Wies Church) was built between 1745 and 1754.


    The C, M, B mean Christus Mansionem Benedict (Latin for ‘May Christ bless the house’). The ‘+’ represent the cross. 20 + 18 is the year. This is a popular thing among Germany. Our home also has it printed above the doorway.


    Neighboring home with its unique window treatment.


    Continuing south and just starting to see the glorious Alps!


    Tomorrow will be May 1st and in Bavaria this is maypole day. Local folks dress in their finest costumes and celebrate. These maypoles are decorated with ribbons, wreaths, and signs representing local craftsmen’s guilds.

    Our next stop was the Schloss Neuschwanstein (New Swanstone Castle). I had been looking forward to this castle since we planned the trip. Unfortunately getting tickets on the German Labor Day weekend was going to be tough.


    The closest to we got to Schloss Neuschwanstein was a drone flight.


    The valley was incredibly beautiful with blue skies and yellow spring dandelions.


    Picturesque perfect cabin in Bavaria.


    A traditional horse cart being pulled under the shadow of the Neuschwanstein Castle.


    The end of the Romantic Road brought us to Füssen.

    We parked the mules and walked around a bit but realized that it was going to be difficult to find a restaurant that was going to be able to serve is quick enough to get back on the road in order to make it to the Black Forest before the end of the day.


    Hanging out with this hansom guy!


    It was also difficult to see the Alps just on the horizon and realize that we would have to wait for a future date before we could ride into Austria, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland.


    Onward to Triberg and the Black Forest where we got a hotel room for the night.

    Tomorrow we will explore Triberg, ride north through the Black Forest and the famous Schwarzwaldhochstraße, and then (sadly) return home...
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  5. #20
    Registered User travisgill's Avatar
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    Map of Day 5 where we left Triberg, passed through the Black Forest via B500 and then returned home.

    Triberg reminded me of Estes Park in Colorado - A mountain community with lots of touristy shops and hiking trails among pine trees and water falls.


    Riding from the hotel to the Triberg Waterfall through tight but colorful streets.

    The Triberg waterfall area is a bit of a tourist location, where you have to pay to see the falls.


    Do I really have to wear these goofy German clothes?


    There was also a rope bridge and play area for the kiddies - us adults are kids at heart.


    In town there are multiple vendors and shops selling everything that is the Black Forest.


    We stopped by 'The House of 1000 Clocks' to see the wide variety of clocks they offered. I'll spare you all 1000 of them but here are a few of my favorites...


    A bright red deer headed clock.


    A modern clock with a nod to the traditional.


    Google-eyed owl clock.


    Of course, there are the traditional Black Forest ones.


    And a mix of traditional with modern bright colored clocks.

    We made out way to Oli`s Schnitzstube who has spent his life making cuckoo clocks. The level of detail of his clocks was pretty incredible.


    Oli also makes unique bird houses.


    We ended up buying a tiny clock that we'll use as a Christmas tree ornament to remind us of our time in the Black Forest. Unfortunately this one is not made in Germany - it's made in Taiwan.


    We had some miles to cover before the end of the day so we reluctantly left Triberg to head north.


    Just a bit out of town is the WORLD LARGEST CUCKOO CLOCK! (Capital letters for effect!). We ended up timing our arrival well because it only goes off on the hour and half hours. Cool clock. Moving on...


    Some local art showing the traditional clothing or Tracht of Gutach.


    The red color of the pompons indicates that the woman was unmarried. What do you think? Do red pompons make a woman more desirable?


    Ever since arriving in Europe, I've wanted to ride an Alpine luge. Sommerrodelbahn Gutach provided that opportunity for just 3 euros. A bit slower than I imagined but fun. Perhaps there are faster ones in the Alps?

    The highlight, at least for me, was riding the B500 or Schwarzwaldhochstraße (Black Forest Road) the entire 64 km from Freudenstad to Baden-Baden. This is regarded as one of the oldest and best know motorcycle roads in Germany.


    Other riders enjoying the Schwarzwaldhochstraße.


    Mummelsee is a lake half-way along the B500. According to legends, the lake is inhabited by a Nix and the King of the Mummelsee.


    A tree with a bunch of love locks. It's seems "p and g" feel their love is bigger than all the others (roll eyes).


    More clocks at Mummelsee Lake.


    There were a few food trucks and a couple restaurants in the area...


    ...and a shop selling all types of art and trinkets.

    We wanted to try Black Forest Cake before leaving the area so we found a seat among the tourists and waited for what we were hoping was a delicious desert.


    Unfortunately the whip cream was so full of rum that it destroyed the taste of the cake. Perhaps we should have ordered the "virgin" Black Forest Cake?


    It was getting late, especially since we had quite a distance to go before getting home. Time to move on...


    ... but not before saying "goodbye" the the King of the Mummelsee.


    Back on the Schwarzwaldhochstraße. The temperature was near perfect and other seems to be enjoying the well maintained road through the forest.


    I expected heavy traffic on the German holiday but was pleasantly surprised when we only had to pass two slower vehicles and got passed once by a sport bike rider.

    Unfortunately, the fun part of our motorcycle trip had come to an end. It was now time to ride the 4.5 hours back home at 130 KPH (80 MPH) along the Autobahn.


    Almost home.

    Overall, we covered about 1,130 miles in five days and got to see a major part of southern Germany. We’ll definitely return to the Black Forest again and explore it a bit longer in the future. Until the next ride report... Cheers!!
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  6. #21
    Thank you for your excellent detailed post with great pictures! We just got back two weeks ago from a trip on the Deutschen Alpenstraße but we were in a car (Audi A4 Wagon). One morning after spending the night at the Seehotel in Kochler, a band of renegade BMW R1200GS's drove by. I told my wife I'd rather be with doing that. I have been getting pricing on a rental bike per week. I might stay longer, since there is so much to see in the region. What I do know is that it is the most beautiful place I've been in my 55 years. My son did a couple semesters in Salzburg Austria and tells me I must drive to Innsbruck and see the Alps from that vantage point. We also drove up the B500 through the Black Forest, but so many places, the road was completely closed so we missed a lot. We spent our final night in Frankfurt, Germany in a palace built by Queen Elizabeth's daughter called Schlosshotel Kronberg. It was the nicest hotel I have ever spent the night in, and the cost was a bit over euro 100! I highly recomend it to those of you who want to feel like royalty once in your life.
    Last edited by mustangguy; 05-28-2018 at 03:15 AM. Reason: link added for Seehotel in Kochler Germany

  7. #22
    Registered User travisgill's Avatar
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    mustangguy,

    Thank you for the comments and kind words on the ride report. I’m glad that you got to see some of the best of Germany - even if it was on 4 wheels. Technically, our trip was on four wheels as well! Your advice on the Schlosshotel Kronberg sounds like a place worth experiencing. Cheers!
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  8. #23
    Registered User RIDERR1150GSADV's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Awesome RR! I love Germany for travel as there is a lot of history to see and the food and beer are amazing too.
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  9. #24
    Registered User travisgill's Avatar
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    RIDERR1150GSADV,

    Thanks for the comment. So true about the food - I gained 15 lbs within a few months of living in Germany.
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  10. #25
    Registered User RIDERR1150GSADV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by travisgill View Post
    RIDERR1150GSADV,

    Thanks for the comment. So true about the food - I gained 15 lbs within a few months of living in Germany.
    You’re welcome! Enjoy the lifestyle there.
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