We spent our last morning in Munich eating (me) and drinking beer (Luke). A quick walk around town and the markets followed by croissants in a cafe with a great view.
Then a beer at the famous Hofbrauhaus. Even at 10am we were not the only people the beer hall. It was a little weird to have two groups of school kids come through, cameras flashing. It’s hard to accept that a building can be both a place where people drink themselves into a coma and a stop on a primary school excursion simultaneously.
We walked back to the hostel to meet our shuttle to Cesky. Even though it’s only a 3 hour drive from Munich it doesn’t seem to be a popular route and there’s only one company that does it directly. Although the fare was somewhat steep we did get picked up from our hostel and dropped at the door of our accommodation. On the drive we saw snow, all the more surreal since it was a 20 degree day and the aircon in the car wasn’t working so we were absolutely roasting, even with the windows down a little.
The German countryside is filled with perfect little houses, all white with red roofs, green fields, and more solar panels than you can imagine. Parts of the freeway were lined with rows upon rows of them and nearly every house had an impressive array on the roof.
All that stopped when we entered the Czech Republic. It’s a little like when you drive from Victoria to NSW and there’s an immediate decline in the quality of the road. Except in this case it’s a decline in the quality of everything. Even the trees look more shabby than the ones in Germany (which, to be honest, somewhat reminded me of Duloc from the movie Shrek). There were also several tractors piled with hay that we passed on the road… I’m not sure what it is about the more easterly European countries and tractors with huge piles of hay but it’s apparently a cliche for a reason.
After checking into the hostel and finding that we’d been upgraded to a 3 person room (rather than a 16 bed dorm) which we don’t have to share (woohoo!) we wandered through the town. It’s very quintessentially old Europe.
We bought some canned goulash for dinner and hunkered down with the American manager, Brennan, and had a great evening of chatting and drinking some of our duty-free.
6 thoughts on “Munich to Cesky Krumlov”
Definitely adding Munich to our 2016/17 trip!! Gorgeous!!
It’s so lovely but I did forget to mention the one downside that I’d totally forgotten about Europe – everyone smokes here. It’s bizarre to see a big group of well-to-do middle aged people standing around in fancy clothes smoking. It’s something I generally associate with teenagers at bus stops.
I’m quite sad that we didn’t get to do any bike riding though, there are great bike lanes everywhere here. Hardly anyone wears helmets though. I guess it’s less necessary if you’re not on the road.
I spent a few days in the Czech Republic staying with a (Czech) friend at a small village just outside Prague. While the village itself was quite cute, there was the same shock each time we caught the train back there, passing from beautiful Prague into country side with bleak, grey, soviet style buildings. I’ve heard that Cesky Krumlov is beautiful though 🙂
Yeah, that’s definitely the feeling of it! Quite bleak indeed. Somehow Germany manages to do boxy architecture with style but here it’s bland and run down if it’s not really old and historical.
My friend’s mum (through my friend as translator) told me some amazing/sad stories about life under the communist rule/before the ‘fall of the iron curtain’. Even stuff as simple as having to smuggle children’s clothes and material across borders because they couldn’t get anything. And not being able to leave or cross the borders. Stuff you’ve heard about in history books but it’s amazing to think how (relatively) recent this all was, in our lifetime. I guess the buildings and bleakness is like a legacy or reminder in the landscape of that time
Indeed. Cambodia was similar – our friend Ean’s mother had been moved from her home by the Khmer Rouge and many of their possessions lost. Even though I’ve traveled before the only dire and widespread poverty I’d seen was in South Africa and very briefly. Seeing how people around the world live certainly gives me a new appreciation for how fortunate we are to be born in Australia.