summer sun tour

snail

Well-Known Member
#1
Hi Folks, been a while since finding free wifi so an update on our travels...
we left Belgium behind and crossed into Germany near to Cologne and boy was I glad to be on the motorway, I know this is industrial heartland but so busy! and the motorways being free are just as busy as ours with road works to match in fact there are road works everywhere with whole routes barred in some places you need good mapping as well as satnav, made the first mistake of getting fuel and gas on the motorway with diesel at 1.45 a litre and lpg at 79.9 you can save 20 cents a litre on the ordinary road garage four courts, we used the euro adapter to fill with gas which was easily done .

we made our way briskly to Soest just north of the Ruhr valley and the Mohne dam, unfortunately I made the second mistake of going on a sunday, everyman and his dog, child, hiker was out and with 10,000 motorbikes flying past relaxed it was not, we failed to park but managed to circumnavigate it take some photos drive across the dam, the reservoir was much bigger than expected with several villages around the perimeter and three crossing points.

we moved on towards Hameln and the fairy tale route of the brothers Grimm fame, the route follows the Wesser river which starts at Han Munden by the confluence of two other rivers and runs 300 odd miles to the north sea. we got a map of the route from the tourist office and are only doing a section of it, Hameln was a disappointment we really wanted to stop there but being bathed in roadworks it took us three attempts to get on the stellaplatze, when we did it was looking out onto old railway sidings flats on two sides and the local dole office with a bunch of unsavoury looking characters waiting for their handouts?..... we left with map in hand to the next place along the route, it is really pretty with half timbered houses, stellaplatzes either overlooking the river or on the bank a really good week or so could easily take much longer and do the whole route. They could do with making a bit more of the fairy tale part as only a few exibitions to look at, the river being the main focus with several trip boats luring punters on board 100 seater plus I would think we left the route at Han Munden areally special town just north of Kassel.

Our next destination was further east with a few hops we were parked up at Colditz stayed in the carpark overnight for a two hour guided visit next day. our English speaking guide was quite humerous with her tails of escape attempts and successes, she made it very interesting and some of the tunnels are still open for you to see and of course the famous replica glider in the attic. the castle looks more like a lavish hotel and has doubled in size since ww2, with more work on going it also has a youth hostel this was a really good visit we stayed another night in the car park as it was so quiet on our own.

Heading west again it wasn't long before we reached our next destination Hainich national park near to Bad Langenslaza, this is the tree top walk a 500 metre walk amongst the forest starting at 10 metres high rising to 44 metres in the look out tower quite an experience with Mrs snail a bit unsure as not liking heights but she made it ok, a couple of forest visitor shows and numerous forest trails this occupied a whole day and 1 yes 1 euro to park the van! it is one of the biggest beech forests in Europe.

Now today the 1st June we are about a third of the way along the Romantic road at Feuchtwagen they have a festival weekend with food and music, and the stellaplatze just happens to be free so would be rude not to stay? this route will eventually lead us to Fussen with maybe a detour to Dacou concentration camp but we are unsure how we feel about that we will have to see, from then on we have a toll and go box free route given us through Austria into Italy so join on the other side if we make it! who knows we may go to Lake Constance and there is also old Adolfs gaff not far away perched on the mountain!

so this is what we've been up to last few weeks, the stellaplatzes have been great from free to 20 euro, with water and ehu usually extra, we haven't paid more than 10 euro and this last week has cost 2 euro for water.
Mr German "camps" everywhere and will not give up any ground not even to his own kin, I can see why they behave in Spain like they do its normal!! they will see people drive away rather than wind in there awning!
the main pain in the ass is coins ticket machines to pay for platzes you need tons of 2,1 euro and 50 cent pieces to pay for water also, super markets are reluctant to give them in change even when asked for? we have shared out our shopping and gone through singles to get change, we have only seen two uk plate vans so far?

so happy days from snails trails see ya soon, loving the bratwursts too, but haven't found any clockwursts with the picture of the fallen Madonna with the big boobies!

cheers for now Bri and Jan
ps don't mention the war......
 

vwalan

Well-Known Member
#3
good looking round colditz scloss.
was there in 99 . actually was there just after they found the food etc hidden under the potato store .
was berken fest . in begining of may. got into trouble for opening a tin of corned beef and eating it . ended up on the maires table that evening at the street party. but east germany is the place to be best part of germany i say.
 

snail

Well-Known Member
#4
Hi been down to the town tonight and everyone is enjoying the festival with umpa bands playing and lots of Bavarian national dress, good atmosphere and not a copper in sight! Bratwurst and pommes all round! But very hot had to come back early to open up van else too hot to sleep, mostly been between 27 and 32c for five days or so then a thunderstorm, then repeats, never have we looked for so much shade!! You can sit out till 10 or 11pm quite comfortably
 

Dunroamin

Well-Known Member
#5
Lovely post Snail. Did that route more or less over 40 years ago, roads somewhat quieter then.
40 years ago would be 1978,at that time there were only 2 corridors for vehicular traffic from the West to Berlin and stopping on one was a recipe for trouble,you were timed and any large discrepancy would put you in deep poopoo.For a West German to visit the East they had to have family there or a very good reason.They would not be accorded freedom of movement. I know Ïntourist"did guided coach tours under very watchful eyes but a "sonder genehmigung"for freedom of movement was 99.9% nono. Which begs the question from myself and other half whos parents fled Dresden and left relatives behind.How did you do it?
 

chrisjones18

Well-Known Member
#6
Down by the Czech German border around 20 years ago they didn't have anything good to say about people with a English accent . Our daughter speaks fluent German but they didn't know that. We were taking her to university there.
A stunning country but my impression of the east side was not a good one.
All after the wall came down, might be different now and we will find out when we get back that way.
 

Sueboo

Active Member
#7
My hubbie at the time had an uncle who lived over there. I remember being scared shi...less whole trip , can't remember how we did it but we did. Only reason I know it was 40 years ago was because we got divorced the next year
 

Dunroamin

Well-Known Member
#8
40 years ago I was on the sites in Germany subbing.A few weekends we would go to Czech drinking and whoring.As soon as you crossed the border near Nurmburg the Vietnamese would be there selling copy clothes and ciggies.On to Pils where the shop girls were more than willing.Halcyon days.I never married and Heike and I are "dinkies"20 years of one night stands. I worked in Poland maintaining a track laying machine so that it looked good for potential buyers,Hungary spraypainting aeroplanes for Lufthansa.You were bussed from hotel to hanger every day and going walkabout was a nono.Poland was more relaxed but it was real hard to spend the amount of Zlotys you had to change. The owner of the hotel in Poland thought as we were Westerners we would be paying the bill in hard currency and when we dumped the Zlotys on him with the paper allowing us to pay with them he nearly had a heart attack.
 

chrisjones18

Well-Known Member
#9
Czech and whoring, took father in law over border into Czechoslovakia and he was amazed at all the young ladies waiting at the bus stops . They must be freezing in this weather with so little clothing on.
Only problem we had was I lost the log book and had a long delay while customs checked everything...48 hr pass was the best they would do.
Loads of gear sold out of suitcases on the side of the road...
Stories from mates in Czech that I can't possibly put on a forum , or anywhere else in writing..
 

BigMomma

Well-Known Member
#10
Czech and whoring, took father in law over border into Czechoslovakia and he was amazed at all the young ladies waiting at the bus stops . They must be freezing in this weather with so little clothing on.
Only problem we had was I lost the log book and had a long delay while customs checked everything...48 hr pass was the best they would do.
Loads of gear sold out of suitcases on the side of the road...
Stories from mates in Czech that I can't possibly put on a forum , or anywhere else in writing..
Of course you can, if the TV these days can get away with showing full frontal nudity in the guise of a 'dating' programme then writing about a bit of whoring is tame these days :giggle::thumb:
 

vwalan

Well-Known Member
#11
get a rowing boat..
you get a oar either side of you for free .
 

Dunroamin

Well-Known Member
#12
Getting back to Snails adventure,am I right that you have a 240 volt fridge ? and if so can you run it 24/7 without using EHU or turning it off at night?
 

snail

Well-Known Member
#13
Hi folks, still in Germany just! Dumroamin if you mean me no I don't have a compressor fridge

Ok so we decided against a visit to Dachou concentration camp oops sorry I meant memorial, we are presently in Fussen at the end of the Romantic road? So was it any good? I have to say no mainly because the signage is absolutely rubbish it is very difficult to actually stay on it! The only part which is any good in our opinion was the last 30k to Fussen because you are staring at the Alps all the way.

Today we visited Ludwigs castle the fairy tale one Neuschwanstein which is quite imposing up on the mountainside very picturesque, but boy it is really just a money spinner, barely 35 minutes in the castle with the next tour biting at your heels, absolutely full of the dreaded Japanese coach tour party! and 8.50 to park the van! So all in all the Romantic road I would not reccomend, would of been better to pick out a few towns and make your own route, because of this we missed out Bad Waldesse, we have also decided a visit to Adolf place is too far a detour, as we are now perfectly placed to cross the Alps into Italy

We have been given a toll and go box free route from here to Merano, I'm holding my breath but we will see hopefully tomorrow we will go for it

We have had thunderstorms each day for last three, but it soon clears

Catch up again soon
Snails
 

chrisjones18

Well-Known Member
#14
Bit of a shame it was disappointing for you..
We are still in the forest with huge dissisions to be made, to sell a house or not as the case may be.... all this depends on a very slow working council planning department.
 

vwalan

Well-Known Member
#15
oh well the sun is shining bright and warm .
wonder if its because its a sunday.
23c showing slightly in the shade yesterday be interesting to see if it gets warmer today.
 

BwB

Well-Known Member
#16
Be interested to hear how you get on with that toll free route, Brian. Enjoying reading your thoughts on Germany :thumb:
 

sundowners

Well-Known Member
#17
Many years ago we did a little trip through Germany and I didn't really get on with it!!!! well we had just come from Norway and Sweden!!!!!---- after a recent chat with a couple of germany lovers I think we may well give it another try---- in recent years Germany was just in the way of our trips to Sweden!!!!!!!
Nigel
 

snail

Well-Known Member
#18
Hi folks, not much free WiFi so bit of a catch up

The toll free route through Austria worked a treat, but slow as mostly two lane and not much overtaking possible, very scenic, except after leaving a small town on a downhill stretch Mr Plod jumped out in front of me with his speed gun! 35 euro spot fine he grinned! 75 in a 60 limit, he was really hiding and even had his hat off! Bugger!

Entering Italy first thing you notice is how bad the roads are, signage is crap too, had a couple of free stops before arriving at Venice camper stop 18 euro per night.
We couldn't believe how much infrastructure there is to cross a small amount of water the causeway is huge more like a motorway.
Venice is obviously beautiful and we did the usual tourist bits St.Marks square and cathedral, Doges palace, had a boat ride on the grand canal, but I drew the line on a Gondola at 90, yes 90 euro for 30 minutes!

We moved on after two nights down the coast a ways but found it too scruffy and dirty, so turned west towards Florence made the mistake of driving in! Every stop we were surrounded by 10 suicidal scooter riders of both sexes and ageless mama and Pappas, I just escaped without a scratch how I don't know? Moved on to Pisa to a secure camper stop, there we visited the tower and next day got a train back to Florence to visit the Doumo cathedral and the gallery Accodemia. Every place you visit has at least an hours que and at 32c that's quite tiring, with Jans cultural needs fullfilled we decide to run for France.

We used the motorway to get out and went for 175 miles for 35 euro, stopped for lunch and decided to have a night stop, we found a camper stop on the coast at San Remo for 15 euro, arrived to find it is now free with all services free also! We are still here! Will be 4 nights and leave on Monday for France the 25th.

So Italy bad roads, bad signs, extremely busy and hot saw 41c one day, and expensive fuel was 1.60 litre and lpg was about 60 cents, filled gas with the French or cup adaptor, was refused once but next garage ok, lpg pumps are usually manned even if the general forecourt isnt, France next only about 40k a way,

So that's a quick catch up as we are sat in tourist office!
Have fun catch ya soon snails trails!
 

vwalan

Well-Known Member
#19
good to hear you are all ok.
so its back in france again.
used to visit italy years ago never really liked it ,
went as a kid ,tried again as a teenager and as an adult but it just never quite felt right.
always liked france and spain and portugal.
never really went alot on belgium or holland or west germany . liked east germany .
just a different feeling . nothing i can explain just a feeling .
but have lots fun and enjoy the rest of your travels .
 

BigMomma

Well-Known Member
#20
Hi folks, not much free WiFi so bit of a catch up

The toll free route through Austria worked a treat, but slow as mostly two lane and not much overtaking possible, very scenic, except after leaving a small town on a downhill stretch Mr Plod jumped out in front of me with his speed gun! 35 euro spot fine he grinned! 75 in a 60 limit, he was really hiding and even had his hat off! Bugger!

Entering Italy first thing you notice is how bad the roads are, signage is crap too, had a couple of free stops before arriving at Venice camper stop 18 euro per night.
We couldn't believe how much infrastructure there is to cross a small amount of water the causeway is huge more like a motorway.
Venice is obviously beautiful and we did the usual tourist bits St.Marks square and cathedral, Doges palace, had a boat ride on the grand canal, but I drew the line on a Gondola at 90, yes 90 euro for 30 minutes!

We moved on after two nights down the coast a ways but found it too scruffy and dirty, so turned west towards Florence made the mistake of driving in! Every stop we were surrounded by 10 suicidal scooter riders of both sexes and ageless mama and Pappas, I just escaped without a scratch how I don't know? Moved on to Pisa to a secure camper stop, there we visited the tower and next day got a train back to Florence to visit the Doumo cathedral and the gallery Accodemia. Every place you visit has at least an hours que and at 32c that's quite tiring, with Jans cultural needs fullfilled we decide to run for France.

We used the motorway to get out and went for 175 miles for 35 euro, stopped for lunch and decided to have a night stop, we found a camper stop on the coast at San Remo for 15 euro, arrived to find it is now free with all services free also! We are still here! Will be 4 nights and leave on Monday for France the 25th.

So Italy bad roads, bad signs, extremely busy and hot saw 41c one day, and expensive fuel was 1.60 litre and lpg was about 60 cents, filled gas with the French or cup adaptor, was refused once but next garage ok, lpg pumps are usually manned even if the general forecourt isnt, France next only about 40k a way,

So that's a quick catch up as we are sat in tourist office!
Have fun catch ya soon snails trails!
Some very useful information in this post Brian, always very useful to get other's. views and perspectives on different Countries, roads, parking, night halts etc. so thank you for that. You sound as if you are enjoying the trip thus far, long may it continue :thumb:
 
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