Tuesday, July 31, 2007

My trip to Europe - Day 3

Day 3 - Outskirts of Munich

Having gotten a decent night's sleep, we got up in the morning ready to go see some of the further out parts of Munich. Lartiza had arranged to do some yarn shopping with someone she knew from Knitters without Borders, so Guilherme and I were on our own.

We headed to the Hauptbahnhof and figured out which tram we'd need to take to get to Nymphenburg, a palace on the outskirts of Munich. We boarded and were soon joined by a large number of school children who appeared to also be on their way to see the place.

When we got there, the building itself was under renovation, but we were still able to go inside and see some fancy rooms. But the real attraction there were the grounds. The gardens behind the palace are quite extensive and include a kilometer long canal surrounded by woods that surround other minor palaces and lakes. There were lots of trails through the woods and a good number of locals were taking advantage of them for jogging and walking. We also saw more school kids running around and jotting down information on various attractions. Must have been some kind of worksheet they had to fill out.

Front of Nymphenburg
Front of Nymphenburg

Swans and a fountain
Some swams in a pond in front of Nymphenburg

Nymphenburg - Grand Hall
Nymphenburg Grand Hall

Nymphenburg - Gallery of Beauties
Nyphenburg Gallery of Beauties

Looking out at the gardens
Looking out at the gardens

Swan Lake?
Another swan

Pool (right)
This photo of the pool at the end of the canal is one of my favorites. It also makes a nice desktop background, in my opinion.

Some kind of memorial rotunda in the woods

After spending a few hours at Nymphenburg, and walking nearly 5 kilometers in the gardens, Guilherme and I caught a bus over to the Olympic park, home of the 1972 Olympics that were held in Munich. You might remember a film by the name Munich that came out a few years ago, which had reference to the fact that Israeli athletes were taken hostage and killed by terrorists during the Munich games. We didn't have any kind of tour guide to explain the significance of anything to us, so we just kind of wandered through the Olympic park and paid a couple Euros to enter the stadium and walk around the concourse.

Olympic Park
The distinctive architecture of the park ensure that it certainly wouldn't be mistaken for something else.

Olympic Park
The spaceneedle-esque tower

Olympic Stadium
A look at the main stadium.

After finishing there, we took the subway back to downtown, ate lunch at a turkish kebap restaurant, where we ended up with kebap platters rather than the kebap sandwiches we were trying to get, and then made it back to the hotel where we took a nap and did a few other things before collecting Laritza and heading to a supermarket to buy a few things. We had to get to the supermarket early as all markets in Germany and Austria close at 6 pm. Laritza and I bought some food to make lunch on the road trip we had planned for the next day.

After dropping our groceries off at the hotel, we headed out to dinner at the Augustiner beer garden, which felt much less touristy than the Hofbrauhaus. Under duress in the food line, I ended up buying more hotdogs and sauerkraut and being as I didn't see any non-beer beverages there, I made do with my trusty liter-sized bottle of water. One nice thing in both Germany and Austria is the presence of numerous fountains designed for filling water bottles as you travel around.

Augustiner Beer Garden
This truck drives around picking up used beer glasses from stations located throughout the garden.

Augustiner Beer Garden
Just to give a hint at the amount of people frequenting these places.

When Guilherme and Laritza started on their 3rd beers, I left them and headed back to the hotel stopping at the Hauptbahnhof along the way to buy a Fanta and some chocolate.

Munich at Dusk
On the walk home

Munich Hauptbahnhof
In the Hauptbahnhof

More pictures of Day 3.

Coming tomorrow: Riding the rails to Fussen.

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