Adventure 2010 – April/July 2010

May 19, 2010 Wednesday – Altdorf/Zurich/Innsbruck

Slide Show

It was dark when we got here, we were real tired, and just happy to be somewhere.
We get up and see this out of the window.
That's a real crappy picture of the Swiss Alps.
But, it's right outside our room.
My camera has some problems. Perhaps with overuse.

Altdorf is a really nice little town in central Switzerland

We walk around town a little to see what we had missed last night.

It has a nice friendly feel to it.

And it turns out, this square is where William Tell shot the apple off his son's head.
Read the story here.

As usual we fool around too long in Altdorf and leave behind schedule on the way to Zurich.

We leave Altdorf and drive north with Lake Lucerne on the left and the Alps on the right. Beautiful.
Just up the road about 20 minutes I find the Eden au Lac hotel. It's in a terrific location with views of the lake and the mountains.
I'm happy we stayed at Altdorf, but I sure would like to stay here for a few days.
And it was 50CHF cheaper.
There's sheep and horses up the hill to the right.
And Lake Lucerne on the left.
I'll remember this one, but I expect there's a lot more of these around.

Hotel Eden au Lac, Brunnen, Switzerland.

Well, we leave Brunnen and take the E41 to Zurich.

We find the center city without too much difficulty, then drive around a while looking for sights Olga wanted to see. We finally found a parking garage within walking distance. We go down to the canal that leads to Lake Zurich.

Across the canal is a church she was interested in and we spent a little while there.

Then it's back across the canal to visit ? (anybody know?)

It's currently a part of a school.

Here's a link to the area.

You can walk around a little with Google street view.

We take a walk around looking for a place to have some lunch.
Once again we can't find anything open.

On the way back to the car we run into a plaza with no one there, but the café is open.

It turns out they are only serving cakes and pastries.
And beer.
I didn't know Shlitz was around any longer.

I didn't notice they had the Shlitz so I wound up with a Swiss beer.

On they way back we run across a little street band.

We get back to the parking garage and spend a few minutes figuring out how to pay for the parking.

It wasn't exactly intuitive.

We leave Zurich and get lost in the suburbs for quite a while, but it was an interesting drive. We finally stop and get directions from a truck driver in either German or Swiss, I can't tell the difference. He set us on our way to Chur where we would find the road to Innsbruck.

That worked and we passed Toggenburg about halfway to Austria.

I wound up at what appeared to be a border crossing which I think is where we went either into or out of Liechtenstein. It's the fourth smallest of the European principalities. So if we were in Liechtenstein I hardly noticed it, although one of the small towns we went through had Liechtenstein buses, but I was pretty sure we were in Austria by then.

Anyway that translates to Swiss customs in the principality of Liechtenstein.

We drive through some small towns and finally find the Autobahn to Insbruck.
It's getting late and I had planned on getting to Munich tonight.
Not going to happen, so we plan on staying in Innsbruck tonight.
That's going to make a real long day tomorrow driving up north of Berlin.

We drive through many tunnels. One in Switzerland, I clocked at 18 kilometers, about 13 miles. But there's very little traffic. It's an impressive scenic drive with some interesting buildings on the top of mountains.

We get to Innsbruck and head toward the town center (Zentrum). Once again it's pretty late and the first hotel we check at it wants 169€ but they'll give us the last room for 159€. This is about $200 and I told Olga to try to keep it under 100€. So she goes up the street and tries another hotel who wants 200€.
We bite the bullet and go back and take the 159€. It comes with free breakfast and a deal on parking.

It is a four star, though. I don't usually get this close to a 4 star hotel.
Hotel Goldener Adler.

It has an interesting security feature on the elevator. You have to use this little magnet thing on the key to get the elevator to go up.
No security on the stairs.

And you don't have to do it to come down.

It is definitely a luxury room with a nice view of the old city.

It's a very large room with a big bed. Although it has a split mattress, not really king size. And a nice desk area.

There's a nice sitting area.

More seating with a wimp ass TV. This size room could use a bigger one.
But I only use it for background noise, so it doesn't matter that much.

I'm writing this from my Paris apartment. The whole apartment would fit in this bathroom.
It's complete with a two person whirlpool tub, toilet, bidet and sink.
There is a towel warmer and I didn't find it until the next day but there's a piped in music selector on the outside.

It also comes with a bunch of those free toiletries.

This is a lot of luxury wasted because it's late and we go out to try to get some dinner before everything closes.

We walk a little way through the old city looking for a nice restaurant, pass a few, then decide we better quit looking or they'll close up around us.

So we get in just in time and have a nice dinner.
One thing about the Germanic countries, they give you a decent sized beer.
Not that wimpy 25cl you get in France.

It was a very nice place and we were about the last to leave.
We go back to the room and stay awake about 20 milliseconds after we hit the bed.

Next time I get a $200 hotel room, I'm checking in at the first possible moment and asking for a delayed check out and using every minute of it.
Then I go to a reasonable priced hotel and use it as a base to see the city.

Busy two days, breakfast in Nice, France. Lunch in Genoa, and a ride through Milan, Italy. Dinner in Altdorf Switzerland.
The next day, breakfast in Altdorf, almost lunch in Zurich, a ride through Liechtenstein, and dinner in Innsbruck, Austria.

I don't recommend this. You should take two weeks minimum to do these two days.

That's Piss Poor Planning, followed by Poor Execution.