Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Bavarian Alps Part 1

Recently, MBA and I have had a dear friend visiting. This dear friend also wanted to do a bit of traveling outside the UK. Since he happens to speak German, we thought: what better place to go for a weekend away than Bavaria?!?!?

Last Friday we flew into Memmingen, Germany and hit the ground running!

Our first stop was Ottobeuren to see a basilica:

Interior of the Basilica

Late Baroque Altar

And the creepy part of the basilica. There were six of these! Weird huh?

This is a picture of the Ottobueren's city center. We picked up a pretzel here!

This was the kind of view we had as we drove through Bavaria. Gorgeous!
It was a bit cloudy that weekend, so we never saw the tops of the Alps. It was MBA's first time to the Alps, so that kind of stunk for him. However, it was still beautiful!!!

That first evening we stayed in a small Alpine village called Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Now that's a mouthful!

It was a charming little village nestled in between two very large mountains. That evening I was introduced to Swabian Noodles, also referred to as Spatzle. If you're ever headed to Bavaria, make sure to take a taste of these noodles. They were delicious!

After a hearty breakfast the next morning, we headed out to explore the area. Our first stop was Ettal:
The Ettal Abbey

Isn't this beautiful?

The interior was stunning. No picture will replicate anything close to its splendor.

 During the winter of 1940-1941, Dietrich Bonhoeffer lived at this monastery. Like Bonhoeffer, many of those at the Ettal community were involved in the conspiracy to kill Hitler. It's also alleged that Bonhoeffer wrote Ethics while at this monastery.

Next, I had the guys drive me through Oberamaggau. Only 4 kilometers from Ettal, this small town is world-known for its production of the Passion Play put on every ten years since 1635 (more or less!). We just so happened to drive through this little town on the opening day of its months-long season of the Passion Play.

Next, we headed off to see Ludwig II of Bavaria's extravagant castles. This was his vacation home. 

The Herrenchiemsee:
The style of the building was to mimic Versaille.

Ludwig supposedly never received guests at this home. It was only him and his servants at this castle.

 Our friend Scott

Grounds of Ludwig's Vacation Home

 We then headed off for Schloss Neuschwanstein.
 We drove along this gorge on our way and just had to get out and take a look. 

Enjoying the view!

The Neuschwanstein Castle
Then, we were headed up that mountain! The officials at the castle said it would take 40 minutes to walk up it, and the guys decided we should see if we could beat the time. 20 minutes later and soaked in sweat, we proved to the officials that their time could be beaten.

From the parking lot, we also saw this castle.

Here's a close-up. As it was really foggy and started raining pretty hard, I unfortunately don't have many pictures of the castle that don't include my hand in them (an attempt to keep the water off the lens!).

Fun fact about this castle: it was the inspiration for Disneyland's Sleeping Beauty Castle.


gwynne said...

Such fun pictures! It makes me miss Germany. Spatzel is delicious and Neuschwanstein castle is my favorite castle in the world!!!

Did you get the tour and see inside? His bedroom is decadent and the walls are covered with scenes from the famous story of Tristan and Isolde. Too bad he went crazy and killed himself.

Glad you enjoyed your time in Deutschland!

Cbell said...

Okay... is that weird creepy skeleton a real thing???? Or some sort of artistic something or other?

Ashli said...

Gwynne - We didn't go inside. We would have had to wait an additional 2 1/2 hours for the English tour. Boo.

CB - those skeletons are real (or were real?). Weird or what?!?!?

scottybecca said...


The Hiltons said...

Beautiful! And I love your boots!

Heather said...

Absolutely beautiful, Ash!

Griggs said...

Amazing photos! I am not certain if anyone ever answered your question on the Hebrew doors, but I can tell you what they represent.

They are the first 10 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Each represent a number because they did not use numerical digits for numbers. So, the letters are right side top down, Alef, Bait, Gimel, Dalet, He (Pronounced Hey); and the letters on the left door top down are Waw (pronounced wow), Zayin, Chait, Tait and Yod.

These represent the 10 Commandments.

Thank you for these wonderful posts.

Ashli said...

Thanks so much for the translation of the doors! I appreciate it!

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