German beer has our souls...
30.04.2009 - 04.05.2009 6 °C
So we had our second experience with a night train for our trip from Paris to Munich... this time we were a little smarter though. After the experience of sleeping on the floor and being paralyzed we decided to splurge (20 euros!!) and get a sleeper cabin with beds. Best idea we could have had. Although the cabin was tiny and the beds left much to be desired, there were only three of us and we got a super night sleep... night trains aren't so bad anymore.
7am rolled around pretty quickly... we got to Munich and headed to our hostel after Michaela bought a bottle of water and chugged it in about 2 seconds (you can't drink the water in the bathrooms on the trains.. at least you are not supposed to.. it is really not that bad.... hehehe). We looked like messes but hey that's the backpacker look right? Unfortunately the weather was crap but we were lucky that we got to check into our room right away (this never happens usually) so we went for breakfast (WHICH by the way is the absolute BEST at this hostel... huge buffet of food for 3 euros.. not just cornflakes and dry bread and strange strange jam...of course you can still have cornflakes if your little heart desires). We had a good nappy poo, took some hot showers, and did some laundry, checkin email kind of thing.
We got up early the next day to head to Dachau. Just incase anyone doesn't know (although you all should says Michaela) Dachau was the first concentration camp built in WW2, about 45 min outside of Munich. It was the concentration camp that every other camp was modelled after, and was probably one of the most brutal also. It is one of the best preserved ones with original gas chambers, barracks, headquarters, etc. We got some audio guides (cheaper than the tour) and walked around for about 3 hours, maybe more. As soon as we can upload pictures we will put up a lot as this was the most sobering experience we have had so far. To walk through the gas chambers and touch the ovens was ridiculous. Everything is preserved, from torture chambers to the train tracks.
We took the bus back and headed to our first real beer hall... Weisses Brahaus.. mmmmmm. Michaela has been waiting for this food. And did it ever satisfy. The schnitzel was the size of a football and the potatoes were like heaven. Even the salad tasted more green than normal (maybe because we never eat). We tried some fantastic Weisses originale beer and even splurged on dessert... first dessert the whooole trip. It was.. get ready for this.. apple fritters baked in beer dough served with whipped cream, ice cream, and cinnamon and a whole lot of sugar. Normally Michaela would not put this near her body but we had to do it. AFterwards we could not get up, so we sat around for awhile and watched the drunk old men.. even made some eye contact ooooh baby. We headed back to the hostel but first took in a concert in the main square Marienplatz where Breanne had a strange experience with a man who walked by, grabbed her hip, made a clicking noise and rambled something in German. Sometimes it is good when we can't speak the language. We just went home.
Saturday we headed to the New Munich Free Walking Tour. We did the Berlin tour and had such a good time so we thought it was a good idea... was it ever. Our tour guide was this crazy guy from Texas who wanted to be German. He was even in full lederhosen the whole tour. Munich is pretty crazy actually. People still dress in the old lederhosen and traditional outfits daily. They have some pretty nice, modern ones. It is not uncommon, but very expensive for a real outfit. Anyways, the tour lasted a few hours and we got to take in a lot of amazing sights. We saw a ton of churches, the Glockenspiel (we got to see it dance and sing!), walked Hitler's Beer Hall Putsch walk, saw a ton of memorials, the Hofbrauhaus, etc. Afterwards a few of us went with our tour guide to this little pub that served original Bavarian stew and we got a free beer (so of course we went). SOOO good.
It was so good infact that we decided to go on the Pub Crawl that night put on by the guy who owned that pub, as we got more free stew and beer... and shots.. We met up with the group, and met these 2 crazy girls from Slovenia. There were also a bunch of American guys but lately all we meet is Americans and it is literally driving us crazy so we ignored them. We ended up getting right trashed by like 11 and headed to Americanos, a sweet little disco. Stayed there for awhile, then headed to Wombats (our hostel) bar because it is a pretty pumping scene. We didn't last very long, but Breanne managed to get a few tips for playing pool (Michaela met some crazy Italian man who could barely speak English but that doesn't matter much when you are drunk enough to speak any language).
Sunday we woke up, a little dizzy, and headed to the old town to tour. We went to St. Peters Church, one of the oldest churches in Germany, climbed the tower to the top (for someone who doesn't like heights very much, Breanne seems to find herself on top of lots of tall buildings). The view of Munich is supposedly the best you can get, and it was definitely breathtaking. We went to the Hofbrauhaus.. this is the oldest and world-renowned beer hall. We bought a few souvenirs (beer mugs), looked around a little. We headed to the Englischer Garten to check out the nude "beach".. More like a field where there are a lot of naked old men and families playing soccer. Of course for us foreigners it was interesting so we have a really great picture to show you all.
After this we decided that we could not leave Munich without taking in a few beers and a meal the Hofbrauhaus so we got all pretty and headed down there again. We took a seat (it wasn't that busy so we got in right away), and took awhile to order. Too many choices. Breanne ended up with turkey ragout and spatzle, and Michaela had some spatzle and took a chance and ordered some veal sausages. They freaked Breanne out because they were white (maybe baby cows don't have as much colour yet? Dad help me on this one?) but they were actually quite delicious. As we started drinking our first beer, two guys who were sitting behind us asked if they could have a picture with us.. I guess they didn't think we were foreign. So we took a few pictures, had a few laughs, then ended up getting free beers out of it. This time we tried the dark beer and damn was it good. Of course you have to hold the steins properly and Prost the correct way. We ordered dessert (yet again.. after Munich we won't need to eat for a week because our stomachs are shrunk too small to handle all this food) and ended up moving over to the table with the guys. These guys were actually catching a train out of Munich that night, so they just decided to drink as many steins as they could before they left. It was quite entertaining. Of course after a few German beers Breanne and Michaela have the good idea to talk to the old german men. Fully decked out in Lederhosen and old enough to have their own table in the Hofbrauhaus (definitely will put these pictures up for you all). We toured around upstairs (stood in the room where Hitler spoke!) and then went back to the hostel. We thought that we would just hit the hay.. but we decided to check out the bar. Ended up seeing this group of Irish guys who were sitting across from us at the Hofbrauhaus, so we started partying with them. Irish guys are nuts. Absolutely hilarious and maaaaan can they drink. The best thing about Europe is that we never buy more than one drink a night so we couldn't leave, even though we were heading to Salzburg the next day at 9am. So of course we were responsible adults and we went to bed at a decent hour of 2:30am.
The next morning rolled around quite quickly....