Originally published 30 December 2016
We finally arrive in the Alps
We wake up this morning at the Munich airport Novotel. We haven't had breakfast yet, and paying 21 euros (22 bucks) a person for a hotel breakfast seems absurd. We are told that the train leaves a few hundred yards from the hotel. We walk about 1/4 mile and buy tickets from the machine on the platform. It shows up in a few minutes and we're off.
We head towards the city and eventually find out that the Munich airport isn't even close to Munich! It's like 18 miles outside of town. The train trip takes around 45 minutes and we arrive at the Munich Haptbahnhof (train station). We haven't had any breakfast so that's our first stop.
We don't want to spend too much time so we grab breakfast from one of the many stands in the train station. I get a pizza, which is sort of shaped like a football. They pick it up with tongs and put it into what could pretty much be called an envelope. A pizza is like 2.80 euros or about 3 bucks. Laurie got a pretty good sandwich for the same price from another stand. We split a pretzel walking to our train.
The tickets from the airport were 59 euros, but I knew there were discount tickets. We bought a ticket valid for two adults and up to 3 children, to go anywhere in Bavaria for one day only. Cost was 23 euros. It pays to do your homework.
We board for our 1.5 hour trip out of Munich. About half way, the conductor comes through collecting tickets. We luckily find out that they are cutting the train in half and the front half goes on to Garmisch and the back half doesn't. We have to pick up and move when we stop at a station, and we trudge our things up the platform and reboard a very full train.
A healthy size bottle of beer
The fullness of the train doesn't last long. People start getting off and it thins out, although the road running beside the track towards Garmisch is bumper to bumper and moving slowly. Traffic is very heavy. We arrive in Garmisch and catch a cab to our apartment.
While a cab ride two blocks in Denmark costs about the same as a kidney transplant in our country, a cab ride all the way across this small town is about 8 bucks. The driver drops us and our packs right at the front door and we don't have to hike through town. We plan on leaving the same way.
Our apartment is quite nice. It is a small one bedroom and the kitchen and living room are one room, about 14 x 14. It's warm, not far from the grocery store, clean, and well taken care of. It has a flat screen, internet, and pretty much all the kitchen is new. The rental folks have left us a bottle of gluhwein (mulled wine) and German cookies! We work out all the details and get advice from the apartment rental folks, and head off to do one of my favorite things...grocery shop!
I am fascinated by grocery stores. I find it so interesting to see how they do things differently and the different things that they eat here. We buy produce (the produce here is very good), cold cuts, bread, sweets, soda, and anything else we think we need. We trek back to the apartment and stow our groceries, then head out to explore.
Biathalon participant skis by
Like everywhere else we've been, it's starting to get dark way too early. We go to the bus stop but find it doesn't run for nearly a half hour. We decide to just walk downtown, navigating by cell phone. As we start our walk, we begin to hear people cheering and someone talking on a PA system. It's faint, but we hear it and wonder what's going on.
We arrive downtown to find they have blocked some of the streets off and have put a foot of snow down on the road. They are having a biathlon (cross country skiing and shooting) right in the middle of town! The crowds are huge, probably 10k, cheering the athletes and watching them ski by. Man...what a party! These people are fun!!!!
We're not really sure what we're watching. We don't know the rules, we don't know the athletes, but it's fun to take it all in though. They ski by, drop down somewhere along the course, shoot their rifles, then get up and ski off. It is apparently co-ed, with male/female teams. We decide to get to a restaurant and have dinner before the crowd lets out, which turns out to be a great idea.
Quite a crowd watches the event
We watch the kids ice skating, walk back through town, and hail a cab. It's way too easy (and cheap compared to where we've been!) to take a cab here. We're in early this evening and to be honest, it's kinda nice to relax and take it easy. I'm writing, Laurie was playing on facebook, and we'll get to bed early!
We wind up in a restaurant having currywurst, pretty much one of the default national dishes. They cook different types of sausage (this was a fancy currywurst place as it is usually pork) and then cover them in ketchup. They then sprinkle curry powder, pretty closely resembling chili powder in the states, on top of the ketchup. Then you eat it. It's actually quite good!
We're getting up early tomorrow.......big adventures await here in the mountains! Goodnight everyone!
Garmisch Day One Slide Show
Click on the links directly below to take you to a specific day and place on our trip!