I was feeling a little bit isolated this morning after being dressed down by the guy at the tour office (why is everyone here so angry?) so I cheered myself up by buying a mini-pizza for breakfast from a self serve bakery which had a nice dining area and turnstile toilets.
When I returned to the tour office, I met a couple from Alabama called Tammy and Tommy who were very friendly with their charming southern accents.
Luckily, our tour guide wasn’t the grumpy man from behind the desk but a very entertaining fellow who told us his very German name and told us to just call him Michael. He entertained us with the usual Dad joke style humour that all good tour guides provide. I think the worst of his jokes was where he was telling us why we needed to be on time, “I don’t want to have to call my wife and say, ‘I’m stuck in traffic.’ Because she will get upset and say, ‘So Traffic’s her name, is it!'” *Cringe*
Our first stop was at a town named Assmansmausen where we took a chair lift down the hill to the town centre. The views were amazing! It was a little chilly through because I was wearing a skirt with tights rather than jeans so my legs were pretty much exposed to the wind.
When we reached the town, we went for lunch at a very enthusiastically decorated restaurant. There was no blank space at all in this place. Even the toilets were decorated. One toilet seat even had a functioning clock embedded. It was so strange, it has to be seen to be belived:
After lunch, we prepared to board our cruise. This took a little while so I took some pictures while I was waiting.
This is a map showing the path of our cruise from Assmanshausen to St Goarhausen.
We passed twelve castles on this cruise which is more than I had seen previously in my whole life.
Burg Sooneck and what appears to be it’s own quarry:
The view from the boat around Trechtingshausen:
Some tunnels near Kaub:
Loreley – named after the beautiful blonde siren who lured sailors to their death from this rock:
After the river cruise, we went back to Assmanshausen by bus to do some wine tasting. I was a little disappointed by the wines that I tasted:
And not just the tiny quantity. The red was okay but the whites were incredibly sweet. The last one was an ice wine which is made from grapes that must be hand picked on the first night of winter which reaches -7ºC. This is apparently German law. Ice wines are a delicacy but perhaps I’m too uncouth (or have been spoilt by dry reds) to enjoy it.
Our last stop of the day was Rüdesheim just to grab a pretzel and some souvenirs. I was too preoccupied with souvenir shopping that I forgot to take a photo of this town.
We arrived back in Frankfurt at about 7pm and I set off to find myself some dinner at a Mexican restaurant (traditional German places seem hard to find here, I think I’m in a sort of China Town-ish area).
It has taken me quite a while this evening to go through my photos and match them up with the map and guide book so I could actually work out which castle was which.
If you have had enough of looking at my photos of castles, you’re not in luck, I’m going on a Royal Castles tour tomorrow after thinking that the Rhine valley tour would be more about vineyards but it seems they also have a castle surplus. Nevermind, I’m on a castle binge! Can’t wait to see some more!