Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Black Forest

We went to Triberg which is in the middle of the Black Forest in April and saw the biggest waterfall in Germany! We parked in lot #3 which was pretty much empty and free! Lyssa was excited about parking here because it was right next to a gelatno shop (which is some of the best ice cream in the world!!!) As soon as we got out of the car we could hear water trickling/flowing from a cute little bubbling brook that runs a VERY long ways! We started to see the brook about 45 minutes before we even arrived at Triberg. The highway seemed to run along it! It was pretty neat to watch it get bigger and bigger the closer we got to the water fall.

This is the brook right next to the parking lot.
After we got our bearings we started our climb towards the waterfall. It was quite the hike! It wasn't so much the distance, but the incline was killer! It was well worth it though. The view was beautiful! Below are some of my favorite pictures that Lyssa and I took.

The two pictures above are from the first level of the waterfall. There are three or four levels in all. At the top level there are zip lines that you can ride to get a GREAT view of the area!

 After we spent some time watching the waterfall and hiking (aka climbing) all over it we went into the town and looked at several different cookoo clock shops. This particular area of the Black Forest is famous for its cookoo clock and I do have to say that the craftsmanship on this is excellent. I did end up buying one, but I haven't quite figured out where I want to put it yet.

After we went shopping, we decided to go see the Worlds Biggest Cookoo clock! We got there before it was officially open for tourist season, but I did get a couple of pictures!

This is the outside of the clock with Lyssa's friend Nymuie posing for me!
This is the inside of the clock with Lyssa being guilted into posing for me!
I really enjoyed our trip to the Black Forest and I am looking forward to going again! There is also a museum that we went to that had a lot of history of the Black Forest. Did you know that what we call calliopes were invented here? They have several of the first versions of them that actually run and that you can watch and listen to. They are pretty neat! I can't wait to go again!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Luxembourg, Luxembourg

Sorry I have been so behind in my posts! So much has been going on, its been hard to keep up! I do have some down time now so I am going to try and catch up with some posts this week!

Back in March, Lyssa, Tim, and I went to the capital of Luxembourg which also happens to be called Luxembourg! It is a very small country situated in between France and Germany. They speak French there as well. Did you know that it is very confusing to go from learning German and hearing German spoke all the time to all of a sudden hearing French everywhere?! It is very confusing!!

Anyways, the main attraction in Luxembourg is the old fortress called the Bock Casements built in 1644. It's 14 miles long and up to 131 feet deep in places and it is built entirely out of stone!

This is one of the MANY tight and steep spiral staircases that leads up from the crypt.

Picture of the outside of the fortress

A large section of the fortress

One of the remaining towers.
There is also a Roman Aqueduct that has been rebuilt and is still in use today as a train bridge.

There is also a "modern" castle. It was built in the late 1700's and is still the site of the country's government offices. There is a guard on duty at all times pacing back and forth marking off the time. It's kind of fun to watch! Below are some pictures of the castle that I was able to get before we had to leave!

The Royal Crest

I just love the detail carved into the walls! This is only a minor part of it and the building is covered in it!
Along with the castle and fort there was an open air market where people were selling fresh veggies, fruit, meats and cheeses, and my favorite, wine! One thing that we didn't get to see was the butterfly garden. It was closed for the winter, but I am planning on going back. Overall we had a good time and it's definatly a place worth visiting!