John Godfreyson


John Godfreyson


Former TravelPod Member: itchy-feet-bc

Joined: March 19th, 2010
From: lives in Canada

Europe » Switzerland June 4th 2017

Geo: 46.6806, 7.86407Interesting day. The GPS said that there was a ferry along the route so we were not surprised to arrive at a ferry dock. However, later in the day the GPS indicated "ferry ahead". Considering that we were nowhere near water it was a little confusing. Zelma asked another driver and we discovered we were in line for a car ferry via train which travels through tunnels avoiding arduous driving through the mountains. We did this twice.We finally arrived in Inter-Laken which sits between two lakes. This is definitely a tourist town with many grand hotels. Paragliding seems to be one of the summer sports.After walking around the town we returned to our hotel for dinner. Switzerland seems to be an expensive place to be. I had a hamburger and fries-$25 in an Irish ... read more
Ferry Line Up
On the Ferry
On the Ferry

Europe » Italy June 3rd 2017

Geo: 45.9841, 9.02381Minimal driving today. We drove to the end of the road that passes in front of the villa. There was a large hotel and several restaurants. The view was amazing. At the bottom is Lake Lugano and the City of Lugano as well as other communities. We returned to this location for dinner.Next on the agenda was a walking tour of the village. There is a real mix of housing. Some buildings look like they are about to collapse, some are shuttered (likely part time residences), some well kept homes and some are very expensive villas. The town itself has very few services. Most businesses are restaurants. There doesn't even seem to be a real grocery store.There is however a couple of churches and a very large cemetery.Tomorrow we are off to Switzerland. We ... read more
Mountain Hotel
Ferns in Rock Wall
Attractive Home

Europe » Italy June 2nd 2017

Geo: 45.9841, 9.02386We had a short drive today to our next accommodation. Along the way we took a short diversion into one of the small hilltop towns. The streets are very narrow and car traffic is limited. At the entrance to the town there is a parking lot. From there it is a walking tour. Occasionally there were service vehicles and pedestrians have to find a doorway to enter so vehicles can pass. Generally this would be fine except that in the true Italian tradition drivers travel as fast as possible.Our destination is a Villa in a small town. The building has been renovated years ago. The apartment is large. The setting is very pleasant with park like grounds and the entry is gated. There is a resident dog as well.Once we settled in it was ... read more
Valley Views
Stone House
Poster Picture of Mountain Village

Europe » Italy June 1st 2017

Geo: 46.0186, 9.22493The bus stop is about 30 metres from the hotel. The trip into town takes about 10 minutes on narrow twisty roads. It is amazing that full size buses are able to negotiate the turns. Add into the mix is the fact that many Italian drivers seem to think that they have to go as fast as possible.The town of Menaggio is located near the middle of Lake Como at the juncture of the different arms of the lake. It is obvious that tourist season is well underway.It has been a strategic location for trade particularly when most of the trade was by boat. It is also close to the Swiss border.During WW 2 many of the rich came here to avoid the bombing of their city homes. It was also a home to ... read more
Morning View
Our Hotel

Europe » Italy May 31st 2017

Geo: 46.0147, 9.2479Because a lot of the trip is through mountainous regions we used the main motorways. We probably travelled through at least 30 kilometres of tunnels one which is 11 kilometres. There were 2 sections of toll roads in France and it seemed the bulk of travel in Italy was on toll roads. Total cost $130. Now having to pay $55 for the windshield sticker in Switzerland looks very reasonable. The motorways do a good job moving people but are not great for sight seeing. However, that changed the moment we got to Lake Como. The road along the lake is built into the hillside as well as most of the houses. It is somewhat like the Amalfi coast but the road is a little better with less elevation changes. However there were still numerous ... read more
Ski Village

Europe » France May 30th 2017

Geo: 46.1964, 6.22855While at breakfast at the hotel I had the opportunity to take a couple of photos showing the fact that the area is in transition.Our hotel is located across the street from the bus stop for bus # 61 which is a direct bus to downtown Geneva. The hotel had the bus tickets available at the desk.We walked from the bus terminus to the old city area of Geneva. There were 2 areas showing the archeological history. One area was located in a parking garage and the other was under St. Paul's Cathedral. The latter was very impressive and illustrated historical evidence dating back to before Christ. The various stages of the Cathedral were shown using models and media displays. Upstairs we visited the Cathedral.We continued walking through various areas in the old city ... read more
Hotel View - Old
Geneva Street
Post Office Building

Europe » France May 29th 2017

Geo: 46.1969, 6.23578Road trip day. We started inGermany, then France, then Switzerland, then France, then Switzerland and finally back to France. We are staying just outside of Geneva. Hotel prices in Geneva are terrible. We only want to stay a night not a month.We found this hotel which is in the French area outside of Geneva. It is a modern hotel in an area undergoing rejuvenation. The roads are being torn up so we ended up going in circles.We set the GPS to avoid toll roads so we saw a lot of countryside. We saw large flat areas and rolling hills. Primary activities include dairy farming, crops of various kinds and logging. Also some light industry was evident.... read more
Lunch Stop
Small Village
Staring Contest

Europe » Germany May 28th 2017

Geo: 48.0154, 7.80161Our travel book on road trips recommends this drive through the Black Forest. I was surprised at how well the little car performed in the hilly areas. It is a 5 speed transmission and seems to be a semi-automatic. When shifting there is a pause between gears suggesting an electric clutch in conjunction with a computerized transmission. There are also paddle shifters for manual selection.The Black Forest area is heavily forested and large portions of it are protected park areas. During the winter this would be ski country. At this there are numerous hikers. Seems to be a German pastime.We arrived at the open air museum mid-afternoon. Buildings date back to the 1600's. One building is on its original site. The others have been moved from other locations.... read more
Black Forest
Black Forest
Black Forest

Europe » Germany May 27th 2017

Geo: 49.4607, 8.41273There is a direct train from where we are staying. It was about a 30 minute trip. After arriving at the Heidelberg station we took a. Us to the castle which is accessed by the funicular. On the way on the bus it seems there was a choir group so we were treated with songs on the way.The funicular is a relatively short trip. The earliest structure dates back to the 1400's but the main castle was in the 1600's.Some restoration work has been done but a lot of the castle is in ruins. At the site there is also a pharmacy museum.After the castle we joined the tourist throngs on the main shopping street. It was packed which is understandable since it is Saturday.... read more
View from the Castle
Heidelberg Castle
Heidelberg Castle

Europe » Germany May 26th 2017

Geo: 49.4609, 8.41188The road trip today was approximately 2+ hours on divided highways.When driving on the motorways it is not unusual to see the speed limit box on the GPS go blank. Basically no speed limits on these sections. I estimate some of the vehicles are travelling at 180-200 kph. Good idea to stay in the right lane.Our hotel is located in Ludwigshafen which is across the river from Mannheim. We commuted to Mannheim via the S Bahn which is a commuter railway. Trip takes about 15 minutes.We visited the 17th Century Royal Palace which is one of the 3 largest in Germany. It is a very impressive structure. Parts of the building are used the university which occupies other adjacent buildings. It seems there is some local celebration this weekend. Performing stages and food and ... read more
Police Station
Bicycle Planters

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