Travel Diaries: Munich to Wattens to Innsbruck!

The tour began after a long flight via Muscat, changeover for Munich. It was freezing as I stepped in Munich. I obviously wasn’t accustomed to these chilly winds since I have been born and brought up in Mumbai. We were taken to an Indian restaurant once we boarded our coach and, from the bus onto the restaurant every step I took was a self reminder that, “Nikhita, you better gear up well, or the winter is going to freeze you for good!”

I would have loved to sip on a chilled beer since it was Germany, and I do know that Octobeer just got over because I made the most of it by experimenting with Beer in my hometown, but here that thought just went off once I started eating the hot indian meal. Our tour manager gave us warm greetings and I couldn’t contain our excitement as we checked in to our Hotel.

The next morning, after a wholesome breakfast, we got onto our coach for an orientation tour of Munich city. The next 10 days our bus was going to be the second home where we were going to spend literally the most time. It was warm and cozy, with reclining seats and windows that gave a very good view.

 We reached our first halt, the Marian square, to see the Madonna statue that is gold plated structure, and Golden Roof next to the church.

It’s rather funny, that everytime I peeped out, there was a moment of Wow! All these Mercs, BMWs,Porches, Audis,Volkswagens, Volvos flooded on roads and rarely anything other than them. It was indeed a treat to keep watching them in abundance, but what also surprised me is that there were different tracks for cyclists. 

We then went to Wattens, to see the Green monster fountain, aka the biggest Swarovski Outlet. Danielle Swarovski invented these crystals and the brand came into play. The showroom is under this monster, and as you step onto a belt you are surrounded by shimmer and dazzle. Among the extravagant displays,the bridal outfits studded with crystals, a beautiful peacock and Disney souvenirs caught my eye.

After that visit, we then headed on to Innsbruck at Austria. The excellent roads were built during Hitler ‘s time and are called Autobahns. These roads even landed planes during world war II. They supposedly don’t have a speed limit. 

The “Inn” in Innsbruck is the name of the river and “bruck” means bridge in German. Along the cobbled stone pathways lies a scenic city with buildings in gothic structures.The Maria Theresien Strasse had a row of shops and cafes around, with beautiful displays where I couldn’t stop posing. There was one boutique which had thier traditional dress, the milkmaid outfit on display along the mugs of bubbling beer. 

The local pubs had a Barrel on thier enterance along with some beautiful floral decor. As we walked along the streets it was early evening, so we saw a lot of street artists,performers, cartoon characters, painters, bubble makers and musicians. They were putting up a good show, and I even had a photoshoot with one such artist. The place had a great vibe and it was really eye pleasing to see it all in the old city charm. 

The crossroads looked attractive too, as buildings were coloured in different shades of pastels in a harmonious manner. This city was a visual treat!

Travel Diaries: Sojourn en Paris

Paris welcomed me with a very homely feeling! The bustle of a city full of life. My day began with a scrumptious breakfast of Pancakes, croissant, pudding, cakes, coffee and so much more, but all I really wanted was to see the eiffel tower. 

Couldn’t wait anymore, and so we left for the once a wonder of the world. This tower was built as a temporary structure for the world exhibition in the year 1888, and it was only made for 5 months. Later it was decided to be restored and this wasn’t appreciated by the locals initially. They disliked the structure because they viewed it as inappropriate with the old charm of the city. An antenna was installed on it during world war II and till date its height is 130 meters. It is made up of iron and steel. 

After reaching, we got a ticket and got into the que for an elevator which takes you to the different levels. We went upto second floor which gives you a beautiful view of Paris city. All the monuments can be seen in miniatures. It was a moment of “Clickathon”! 

We then went to a café, I saw a beautiful display of Macaroons. I was really tempted to pick up some, but to my shock one macaroon was for 1.90€. I held back myself, because I am not very fond of Macaroons, I have tasted it back home but I will definitely pick up some if I get it at a better price, maybe I just wasn’t tempted enough. 

PARIS city tour awaited us next. It was also time to know all about the Perfumes at the Fragonard perfumery. Here there was the distillery of olden days and bottles of different shapes and sizes. A whole museum was dedicated to perfume making and it smelled like flowerbeds! The variety of perfumes were made out of essential oils and each had its distinct concoctions. We were given a whiff of thier top 6 scents and I honestly got so confused that I ended up picking nothing but it was indeed a learning experience as I learnt about the kind of fragrances I identify myself with.

Our city tour guide joined us in, and we then scanned the streets of Paris. The grand brands at Champs de Elyss, to name a few Loius Vittoun, Channel, Cartier, Bvlgari, it had it all. We then passed under Arc de Triumph, which is at a height of 50 metres. 

The city seemed to be in its all glamorous avatar as the sun set and we got ready for our Cruise on river sienne. 

It was all glittering as we passed by the monuments on both sides of the bank. Eiffel tower is one structure which can be spotted from everywhere in the heart of the city. As the division is according to the river, eiffel is on Left bank. It was illuminated and on our way back we say the champagne lights. It is a treat to see the Eiffel at night because it is so much more in a city that is all about Love! Paris, I promise to the Eiffel that I will visit you again when Love finds me. Till then I will take inspiration from the energy that’s bustling around me, for I love the idea of Love!

The day ended on a high note as I saw the carousal,Rue de Paris that is a ferries wheel and the opera house. 

Travel Diaries: A Swiss Affair 

Ever since I have known about Snow I have always wanted to visit Switzerland! And as I say Swiss, Snow, Chocolates, Cheese and Swiss Knife pop on top of my wishlist. I knew I couldn’t take Snow back home but the rest and offcourse the Bell has kept me fascinated for years after watching DDLJ! 

As we crossed over the border of Italy and entered I would be lying if I don’t tell you that the writter just awakened from within. We touched swiss after a long Tunnel and what a contrast of weather, from winter chills we went to snowfall Hills. I have seen snow in my native country but catching glimpses of the first snowfall of winter in Switzerland was a moment which just fulfilled my trip. The snow flakes slowly and steadily settled on the coniferous trees along the montain slopes, the houses along the road’s rooftops got a coating, also the cars and pathways weren’t spared from turning into white beauties. It was a matter of worry before, as to how was I going to survive the winter but now it turned into a treat. My camera just couldn’t get enough of the snow scenes so did my eyes, and the eyes won over as I kept down the camera to fill my personal memory storage,aka brain! As we halted for lunchtime, the restaurant to my surprise had tables lined by the window panes overlooking the mountains. It was hot indian food and the icy cold view. The food was excellent, my favourite rajasthani sweet pickle which is hard to find even back home and an apple sheera for dessert, couldn’t ask for more. 

We then left for Mt.Titlis. Here after buying a ticket and you also get a sticker pass to be put on. Then you first have to get into the “Gondola”, which is a six seater cable car that takes you to the point where there is a station for “Rotair”, that is a big cable car with a capacity of 60 people and revolves on its axis as it carries to Mt.Titlis. Surrounded by snow it was completely white except for the colourful specks which were people climbing down the mountain. 

The Mt Titlis has 5 storey building, with open snow area on 5th floor, the place I was most looking forward to.

 It also has a restaurant and bar on 2nd floor but we chose to go to the Move n Pick Ice cream parlour on level 3. I had the swiss chocolate ice cream since I wanted to try things local, it was the most creamy chocolate I ever had. It cost us a little less than four euros but it was definitely all part of the frozen memories that I was going to carry back home. 

We also visited Lucerne, which was again a very scenic place by the Coblebruck. It had a row of cafés by the lake which had beautiful Christmas decor already. It was a day well spent.