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Published: October 9th 2012
fter having an early night on our last night in Hamburg (and missing out on having drinks with Pat Rafter, Lleyton Hewitt and Tomik , yes we were disappointed to find out the following morning and even more so when the photos appeared on Facebook) we were up and ready to begin our Road Trip! The main idea behind a road trip was being able to visit the small towns that are not accessible by public transport. We were also getting very tired of jumping from city to city and not being able to get off at some of the wonderful little towns we would see along the way on our bus journeys. I also have a sneaking suspicion that Aaron wanted to feel the need for speed on the Autobahn which I am sure will give me a heart attack by the end, perhaps I will take Sandy’s advice and wear a blind fold.
We picked up our keys and car from Sixt rental at Hamburg Central Station where the woman behind the counter was quite concerned that we would be driving stick on the wrong side of the road, we laughed it off hoping
it wouldn’t be an issue as an automatic was too far out of our budget. Aaron took some time driving around the car park getting used to the differences (stick on the wrong side and wipers where the indicator should be) as well as driving on the wrong side of the road which we found to be most difficult to remember when turning into a street.
After he was feeling confident we put Bremen into our new GPS which we will apparently be able to use back in Australia and we were off! Well it wasn’t that easy, in no time at all we were thrown down a one way road and getting beeped which was all a learning curve. We arrived in Bremen in time for lunch, finding parking was very easy as everything is extremely well signed. We are even learning some German seeing the same signs over and over again and some well we have no idea what they mean.
Bremen once the powerhouse of the medieval Hanseatic League is a beautiful town, with a stunning city centre and grand building after grand building. The city is famous for the four ill-treated animals as told
in the Brother Grim Fairy Tale the Bremen City Musicians, in the city you can see the statue and buy numerous suvoneers in this theme. After wondering around the central square we made our way to Schnoorviertel a quaint old fishermen’s district that’s now a hive of boutiques, galleries and chic cafes and feels like a small village within a town. We had a little trouble getting out of Bremen as there were roadwork’s and our GPS kept on trying to send us down roads we couldn’t access however eventually we did make our way out of the city and to the town of Westerholt. Here we stayed the night at Gabrielle’s parents’ house, a friend of Aarons from work in Townsville. Gabrielle spent the afternoon showing us around the town including the castle, moat and beautiful timber houses. Later in the afternoon we walked through the forest before enjoying a delicious German dinner that her mother cooked.
We had a fabulous night sleep and in the morning were not allowed to leave before being fed again! Day Two
After leaving Westerholt we made our way to Hameln, the beginning of the Fairy Tale Road, a
scenic route along the Weser River through Weser Hill Country. This route takes you through a number of towns that were made famous by the fairy tales of The Brother Grim.
Hameln owns one of the best known and most disquieting fairy tales of all, that of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. The Town itself is not filled with vast monumental buildings but rather built to human scale, with row upon row of sherbet coloured 16th - 17th century timer houses. We did our own walking tour around the city following the gold rats on the paving and stopped at a bakery to enjoy chocolate rats, which were more delicious than they sound.
We continued to follow the Fairy Tale Road through Hoxter and the Rheinhardwald, a forest that reputed to be enchanted before stopping at sleeping beauty’s Castle just outside the small town of Sababurg.
Although we had planned to next visit Kassel we ran out of time as we needed to be in Frankfurt for The Temper Trap concert. Instead he hurried onto Frankfurt, getting flashed by not only one but TWO speeding cameras. In Aaron's defense we were on the autobahn where there are
not speed limits but this is where they get you on some very small sections of the autobahn there are speed limits and they change very quickly. After quite a bit of cursing from both of us we drove on to Frankfurt where we found long term parking for 4 Euro at a train station and then made our way to our hostel in the centre of town.
After a quick shower and some Burger King we got onto the underground to the Temper Trap Concert, after 15minutes of walking around we realised we were lost and were about to miss the beginning of the concert, feeling rather deflated we walked back to the underground and tried looking for a map. Lucky we did find one and eventually found the venue which in itself was a task, as the name suggest St Peters, the concert was held in an old church which was pretty cool. The concert was fantastic and we were both genuinely surprised at the singer’s voice live which was perfect. Aaron bought me a shirt and after the show we were lucky enough to meet the band get a photo op and even get our record
signed so it was a fantastic end to the night! Day Three
The next morning we slept in and then walked around the unimpressive old town of Frankfurt before getting in our car and making our way to Heidelberg where we stayed for the night. The Hostel was great, situated in the same building as a large and very cheap grocery store where we stocked up on road trip treats, all the healthy stuff like gummy bears and chocolate chip biscuits.
We made the bit of a hike into the Old Town which was quite nice however it wasn't until we crossed the Alte Brucke Bridge and looked back that we realised really how beautiful this town is with the ancient castle ruins looming over the Old Town, leafy hills, woodlands and pastel coloured houses lining the Neckar River. We would rate it as one of the most beautiful places we have seen. After drifting through some record stores and felt boutiques it was time to head back to our hostel where we conveniently visited the supermarket for some chocolate milk and food for a picnic on the road for the following day.
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