We have popped back into Germany, our third pop, to drive The German Alpine Road. The Route runs along the Austrian border and is roughly 450 kms long through the Bavarian countryside. The usual starting point is Lake Constance in Lindau but for us coming from Austria, we are doing it back to front, not unusual for us. There is a note of caution here for others thinking of doing the same thing. The road signs are more suited to doing it from Lindau and we have missed a few turnoffs along the way.
Starting in Konigsee, we actually skipped this part due to the masses of people, and headed out onto the highway. We camped our first night just out of Bad Reichenhall by the side of the lake in the carpark of the hotel after asking permission and then had a drink in their biergarten which worked well for us.
Plus I had my first swim in a Bavarian Lake which was quite refreshing! Yes my eyes watered but it definately woke me up.
Our first real day on the Alpenstrabe saw us visit the town of Riet Im Winkl, (what a fantastic name), where we just wandered through the town taking in the fairy tale housing. The standard purchase of our journey appears to be apple strudel and a fresh loaf of bread from the Bakerie for a picnic later in the day.
Our picnic destination was Lake Grassau, just a small lake set in some parklike grounds on the edge of town where I had my second swim. It seems it’s the Bavarian thing to do.
The other Bavarian thing to do is dress up in the traditional costume. There are more clothes shops selling traditional clothing than everyday wear and it’s almost the norm to wear. Personally I have loved that, it’s really nice to see a culture so proud of its heritage and carrying on the traditions in everyday life.
From Grassau, it’s so easy to waste hours of the day just wandering through the countryside admiring the houses and the lush green pasture framed by the mountainside, we chanced upon the postcard town of Neubeuern. Blink and you’ll miss it. Seriously google this place. Situated between two entrances is this tiny village of picture perfect houses, hotels, and restaurants all centred around The Church of Immaculate Conception. We were lucky enough to be in the square when at 6. 13 pm the church bells tolled for over 20 minutes. For a small church it was simply beautiful inside and out and I’m sure held alot of history.
The illustrations on these buildings are exquisite, really something out of a fairytale book.
The other great thing about this town was that they offered free Motorhome parking in the Sportzplatz, 200 m from The Market Square and it was full by the time we went to bed which proves our point that towns that are motorhome friendly are good for the local economy.
The good thing about a full carpark is that you get woken early so we were on the road before 9 today. Our first town of Oberaudorf, chosen because we wanted to see the Abbey that we couldn’t find, turned up other treasures instead. After the strudel purchase, apricot for a change, we wandered through the church in the centre of town. There in two glass tombs were the bejeweled corpses of two Saints. A little creepy indeed.
I had decided on a 15 minute walk to some rock, which is slighty vague but because neither of us can read a word of German and in need of some exercise, we went.
The first “highlight” was the abandoned restaurant of Weber An Der Wald once frequented by royalty. We actually got a guided tour from possibly the owner, he told us gruffly that he spoke little English but softened towards us and gave us more and more information. What a find – literally attached to the rockwall behind and hidden off the road this place is a gem and such a shame not to be enjoyed by guests anymore.
From here the track leads you to a lake where these kids and I mean kids where practicing ski jump flips into the lake. Really incredible to watch.
From there I nearly ended the walk but not one to quit, I decided we must find this “rock”. Up this muddy wooded track we climbed for probably 20 minutes in the middle of nowhere, the only ones on the track as well until we came to this guide rope along a narrow ledge that led to a ladder. From the ladder, with my legs shaking, we climbed into this cave cut into the rockface.
Turn around and there before you was this amazing framed view through the opening of the cave of the mountains and the town below. Wow.
The walk is called Grafenloch and it’s totally worth the effort.
After all this exercise it was lunchtime so we found a spot overlooking a skifield with all these chairlifts zigzagging the mountainside. Out came the strudel and as we were sitting there admiring the view, we noticed these cars also zigzagging the mountain in the distance. That’s when the driver said ” Let’s climb the mountain in our motorhome too”. Seriously crazy idea but then that’s us – so we did.
The view from the top was out of this world, there was even a lake at the top but you were definately in the clouds and I felt like I was part of the sky.
After these dizzying heights it was time for some lows so we headed to the Lake of Schliersee to camo camp for the night where we found a parking place behind a playground, off the road and just a few minutes walk to the centre of town. We definately slept well that night.