Zell am See, Austria - aka - zas
Zell am See, Austria - aka - zas
Left Munich about 9 and pottered along for the short trip to Austria. As we needed fuel we stopped on the autobahn. There is an almost bewildering types of fuel - 6 nozzles at each pump - 2 grades of diesel and at least 3 petrol. Off we turned down a country road when the car started missing so I pulled over and looked at the receipt from the gas station. Benzine??? That's petrol, not diesel - doh!!!!! This means big trouble, not covered by our breakdown service.
Found a country garage and the owner helped me call a breakdown recovery to a Citroen dealer. He took us back to the workshop and started to pump out the fuel but needed a new filter. Saturday and Sunday, everything shuts in Germany and Austria. The recovery guy loaned us another car, set us up his own GPS and we were able to get to our flat in Zell am See. He was a really helpful, pleasant guy. This is going to cost me all my beer money for a few weeks!
The scenery is absolutely fantastic, huge, snow covered mountain tops, lush meadows and pretty villages. Scenes that look from a fairy tale book with Pub/hotels that are so picturesque. Our flat exceeded our expectations widely, very modern with an awesome view. ZaS is a very pretty small town with ski fields, close to a lake, lots of cafes, pubs, some very old. One pub was dated 1670 - that's over 100 years before Cook came to NZ. We went for a short drive today (Sunday 25) with nothing particular in mind and found a beautiful river/lake with lovely walks. This place makes Queenstown look small beer. The weather is warm and the snow on the mountain tops is disappearing rapidly. This area is exceedingly popular with motorcyclists as there are hundreds of them roaring through town. Surprisingly, there are lots of gang look-alikes riding customized Harleys. Must be a cult thing? Not so surprising was the number of BMWs. Noisy bikes ridden by old farts that should know better and grow up.
Now a few more days into the trip. Got the car back and spent a week's to pay for my sins. That's my beer money gone for a while.
Salzburg is a great city, the home of Mozart. It's so old and quaint with tiny streets and so much history. The old city is 15th century and the new city reminded us of beautiful Glasgow streets and buildings. Yesterday we had a trip around the lake - very low key but enjoyable, followed by a town walk. There are so many skiing areas nearby which makes this a winter destination. The lake freezes over, too. I bet this town really rocks in winter and it's oldies like us who come here in summer time. Weather is really hot - yesterday was 30C and today is hot but hazy. The snow has almost gone from the mountains nearby.
Today we went to the Grossglockner mountain. That's the highest mountain in the Austrian Alps. The road up is a work of art in itself as you drive up to 2750 metres (9ooo ft) with some hairy hairpins. Ros was freaking out with the drops to the side - scary but awesome. We even saw some little furry things called marmots and some chamois up in the snow.
To keep to budget, we have been self catering. It's always a mission buying groceries but that's half the fun. This morning I went out to buy some rolls for lunch and when we cut them open they were a really odd mixture of shredded carrots, peas and walnuts. Very tasty but definitely not what was wanted. Pork has been high on our choice with mince for pasta, sausages, medallions and meatloaf for tonight. There is a bewildering choice of sausages, salamis and cheese and bread. Wine is cheap as it beer and that's got to be good.
The drive to Italy goes through the alps so it's going to be a really spectaculsr trip.