I had the pleasure of staying at the Hotel Archibald Charles Bridge in Prague during my short visit in October of this year. A lovely, 4 star boutique hotel, it is conveniently located a few short minutes from the Charles Bridge on the Lesser Town side of the Vltava River.
The town of Melk sits at the western end of the wine producing Wachau Valley in Austria, approximately one hour from Vienna and two hours from Salzburg. A small town with fewer than 6000 residents, Melk officially became a municipality in 1898 but has dateable records going back as far as 831. It is a popular venue for art festivals, and is home to a wide variety of architectural styles, including the famous baroque style Melk Abbey. The abbey is a popular stop on Danube river cruises as well as day trips from Vienna and Salzburg.
The Melk Abbey is an active Benedictine monastery and school. Originally built as a royal
November 9, 2015, marked the 26th anniversary of the Berlin Wall coming down. The Wall was constructed in 1961, and it finally came down in 1989. The fall of the Berlin Wall paved the way for the German reunification which concluded in 1990 - a country no longer divided.
While I did not get to Berlin on my recent trip to Germany, I did spend some time in Fulda where I lived as a child. Located a little over an hour's drive from Frankfurt, it was home to one of Germany's largest army bases, there to protect the Fulda Gap, a prime invasion route had the Cold War actually erupted into an actual war. With friends in the military and living so close to the border, I was very aware of the divide between East and West.
Have you ever been through a lock? On a Danube river cruise, you pass through 32 locks between Nuremberg and Budapest. Here are a few pictures from just one of the locks we went through. This was a first for me. Quite a bit smaller than the locks on the Panama Canal but the concept is similar. Fascinating none the less!
All the river cruise training I completed gave me a good idea on what to expect, but there's nothing like experiencing the "real thing". Here's our day by day itinerary:
Laurie Marschall - Owner and Founder