Our last full day in mainland Europe we went to a castle. For Jesse this would be the first castle she would see on our journey, and it took until our last day (though not for lack of trying)! We were lucky enough that the day was sunny since, just the day before, it was raining. It was a two-hour train ride east to Burghausen, which sits on the German-Austrian border.
The train trip was uneventful and we arrived at the nothing special Burghausen train station. A 30-minute walk through the new part of town took us to the castle. It was a sleepy day in the sleepy town; it reminded me of main street of many small towns in America. We stopped for lunch at the civic center so we were able to get a map and a little guide to the town and castle.
Burghausen Castle is not a tall castle, rather it is a long one. The longest in the world, in fact. There are seven courtyards to reach the actual main castle that sits on a cliff; on one side it overlooks the Old Town below town below and the other side is a lake. In the first courtyard is the clock tower:
There are people actually still living within the castle walls and there are couple restaurants as well; we stopped for a drink at one before proceeding through the courtyards.
The views of the pastel Old Town as well as the two churches, situated on the Salzach River, was really nice on that beautiful, beginning of fall, day.
We walked under archways until we reached the main castle structure.
Once inside it felt like we were in medieval times.
It wasn’t very expensive to get tickets to walk in through the castle and there were a few pieces of art on the walls, as well as tapestries and paintings, to see on the few floors. But we weren’t here to see the art; rather the best views were from the roof of the castle. We walked up the few flights of creaky wooden stairs to the roof; a gust of wind hit us when we opened the door, the sun was shining and we could see the whole area; overlooking the town, the lake, river, and the surrounding countryside, wow!
After we lingered on the roof for a good long while, mostly by ourselves, we took the squeaky stairs down from the roof, and out of the castle, onto the polished stone pathway, and outside the grounds through a nearby stone doorway. We walked along one of the walls to the lake’s edge,
walked along it for a while, first seeing the castle from below at a close distance,
and then farther off.
Here’s a picture with Jesse on a bridge (though we didn’t need to cross this one to reach where we were going).
We had to walk back up the trail to get to the street level, which was more difficult than it looked for sure. Finally, we arrived back at the civic center where there was an ice cream shop near by. Of course we had to do one more round of gelato which was great. We made out train, then to the next station for our connecting train. At our connection, however, we learned our train had been canceled and we had to wait almost two hours for the next one.
Our little layover reminded us of our stop in Bad Krezuenbach on the way to visit our friends in Rodenbach a few weeks before. There wasn’t much to do the station; stores were closed and all we could find were two doner kebab restaurants, the first of which did not serve beer…and then the second also did not serve beer, boo. They did have excellent doner kebabs, which was a bonus. The proprietor was so excited to tell us about his doner kebabs and since we were Americans, and he doesn’t get a lot of Americans, it made him even more excited to ensure we enjoyed the food.
We didn’t have the heart to tell him that we that we had been in Turkey for a month and a lot of Eastern Europe where doner kebabs are quite popular, we had eaten more than I can count in our time abroad. After our final donor kebab in Europe we made it back to our train and shortly arrived back in Munich. We shared a bottle of wine, talked over our trip and our travels, and prepared for our second to last flight of this journey. The following day we would travel to Iceland for the last part of our year and a half abroad!