Sunday, November 4, 2007

My first trip to Europe (Part 1 of 3)

April - May 1996

Munich, Germany

Munich is Germany's third largest city and capital of the German Federal State of Bavaria. Munich is a popular tourist destination and has been described as Germany's "secret capital". I remember Munich for its beer, castles, nudist park (too bad no picture!), plaza's and churches. Munich (and Europe) is just bursting with culture. I envy these countries who know their history and are proud of their roots.

Thank you to Tita Gloria for letting us stay at your place. Thanks to my cousin, Ria, and Tita Roselle for this great adventure!

Allow me to itemize what I remember about Munich and Germany:

I have never tasted so many kinds of beer in my whole life but in Germany. Who ever heard of beer with honey? Well, it definitely was not available in Manila that time! Center picture below taken at Hofbrauhaus, which is a well-known beer hall located at the city center. It also operates the second largest tent at the Oktoberfest, perhaps Munich's most famous attraction. The Oktoberfest was first held on October 12, 1810 ... despite its name, most of Oktoberfest occurs in September.

We went to Neuschwanstein Castle (1st picture) which is the most photographed building in Germany, and is one of Germany's most popular tourist destinations. Neuschwanstein, the (relatively) modern fairy-tale castle of Bavaria, inspired the modern fairy-tale castle at Disneyland, Sleeping Beauty Castle. Neuschwanstein appeared in the 1968 film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang as a castle in the fictional land of Vulgaria and in season 1 episode 7 of the television series The Amazing Race.

3. NUDIST PARK (sorry, no picture!)
Tita Gloria's apartment was a 10-minute walk away from the English Garden. The Englischer Garten, is one of the world's largest urban public parks, and contains a nudist area! Ria and I were shocked to see flesh instead of grass. It was very memorable... especially the bouncing 'things'.

This was the only time where I finally applied what I learned in Art and History. You can actually tell what period the building was constructed through its architecture (medieval, renaissance, neo-classical etc). Its different to actually see and apply it compared to learning the concepts at school. Travelling is gut!

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