On a different Mother’s Day three years ago, we went for lunch in this corner of the Franconian Switzerland. Today we were just down the road, and up the hill. Oddly, the weather was just as changeable.
Nothing says “summer is on its way,” more than walking up into our little town’s center to buy two scoops at our gelato shop, then strolling through this gate and around the castle gardens. It’s a bit under construction at the moment, but rumor has it that the castle will be reopening after a multi-year renovation project sometime soon!
Many people will say that the best view of Nürnberg can be seen from the SkyBar in one of the movies theaters in town. Those people are wrong, unless you enjoy overpriced cocktails and abysmal service. Save yourself €10, buy a bottle of whatever you prefer to drink, and head to the top of the Adler Parkhaus. It’s a bit less trendy, and there aren’t any chairs, but there also aren’t any surly waiters. Just watch out for cars on the way up and down… city center parking garages don’t leave much room for error!
Bonus tip: it’s currently Italian market time on the Fleischbrücke! The spring edition is on this year from March 15th-25th, and again in April from the 20th-29th (closed on Sundays, of course). Longtime readers will know that the Italian market is one of my favorite things that happens in the city, so if you are like me and need to stock up on cheese and vino, don’t forget to stop by!
For the first four Christmases we were together, BV and I celebrated here with his family. This year we are very happy to get the chance to spend the holidays back in Wisconsin with my family. On the bad side, this year our sweet Marry die Katze won’t get to spend her Christmas day gazing out our front window at the birds feasting on fermented apples in our yard. I have no doubt though that she’s being spoiled by our friend S., and will have plenty of entertainment at his house playing with her friend Mia. We will spoil her with treats upon our return, have no doubt.
Hope everyone is having a lovely Christmas, wherever you may be.
And as always, thank you for reading!
Back in the day, my sister, dad, grandpa, and I were often dispatched on cookie baking weekend to go pick out our Christmas tree for the year. Some years we went to a tree farm and cut one down, but more often it was a gas station or home improvement store that was selling trees. Needless to say, this tree lot next to the Salzburg Cathedral crushes even the nicest tree display, strictly based on location.
On another hot August afternoon, BV and I were visiting the villagers in the Oberpfalz (or Upper Palatinate), when a few of us decided to go for a hike to their “nearby” castle. After a bit of sweaty off-roading over some rivers, through the woods, up some hills, down some hills, and up some more hills, we managed to reach the castle overlooking the lovely town of Kallmünz. On the way though, we had to take a photo stop, because not only was the view absolutely perfect, but we wanted a front-row seat to this guy jumping off the side of the hill. As for the title of this post…. that is a direct quote as he sailed off.
After that, it was off to the castle, down to the city, and straight to the Biergarten. Summer in Germany is the best.
Two pictures today because I am indecisive. And I love castle ruins.
Another day with my parents on their last visit was spent in the Franconian Switzerland. One of my favorite spots in the area is this castle ruin, which sits on a hill (because most castles are on hills, sorry mom) over the Wiesent river valley (Wiesenttal). On the other side of the valley there is a second castle ruin, but there isn’t nearly as much of the structure left as at Neideck. I’m a big fan of ruins that you can climb around on, or bring a little picnic to. Just remember to take your garbage with you when you go, or the castle ghosts will haunt you, you littering jerk.
Every once in a great while, I do manage to get out of Bavaria. In this case, it was because my parents came to visit and were flying out of Frankfurt. That meant a good opportunity to visit some places that were new to all of us, and a bit closer to the airport.
My dad is a big fan of German wine, so we thought it would be appropriate to check out the area around Neustadt an der Weinstrasse, in the Rheinland-Pfalz. When we checked out hotels for the evening we wanted to spend there, we did not find a ton of appealing options directly in town. Instead, we found a nice little hotel in the nearby village of Mußbach. It’s tiny, but incredibly picturesque. Fachwerk* abounds, and many of the houses are honest-to-goodness dripping in grape vines, as you can see above. We didn’t eat at the restaurant pictured, but if anyone is going to be in the area I would strongly recommend going to Weik’s Vinothek. It was too cold to eat outside (in July, thanks German summer), but there was a lovely garden in their little courtyard, and the interior was just as cozy. The food was great, definitely a memorable meal, so don’t be scared off by the website. Sometimes it’s a good sign when restaurants focus on the food and not their internet presence. 🙂
*Fachwerk = half-timbered building
Oh, France. I love you so much, even when you are fairly German. Two years ago we went to Strasbourg to celebrate BV’s birthday, and it remains one of my favorite city trips I’ve ever taken. Charming does not even begin to describe the twisted, cobbled streets, and who can possible argue with literal pyramids of macarons? Pyramids of macarons!? Seriously.