I’m finding it hard to believe that I’ve got up, mostly uncomplainingly, at 7:30 five mornings in a row, had a hurried (albeit delightful) breakfast and then cycled 35 miles on holiday. And I’m about to do 45 miles tomorrow! However, that will take us to my favourite European city, namely Vienna. I might even be persuaded to drink coffee,
Anyway, here’s today’s map and wibblings:
- Bought lunch ingredients at a Spar near our hotel
- Bought stamps at a stationers even nearer our hotel
- Set off through Melk and then along the south bank, intending to cross to the north bank by the first bridge. However, we were firmly told by an older lady we met at the bridge to stay on this bank because it would be nicer. I’m grateful to this Radlerinhexe because our route did go through some very pretty countryside. Pictures, as ever, to be posted later!
- Didn’t do 2 extra km of crazy slopes up to the ruins of Schloss Aggstein.
- Visited a simple country church, supposedly dedicated to cyclists, in Hofarnsdorf.
- Impressed (or maybe depressed) a waitress by my ordering tea at a drinks-stop. This was a sign that I was British, apparently. We also had a conversation with a Czech couple, who I guess are in their 60s and are doing the same route as us before visiting family in Vienna
- Took several diversions due to road or farmwork. This explains the jaggedness (looking for the correct route) and breaks (where I paused recording while looking for signs but then forgot to restart recording when we got moving) in some parts of the route-map.
- Ate lunch at Rossatzbach, in a field overlooking a small beach. People were swimming in the Danube: I rather wish Id done so too.
- Crrossed the Danube on a tiny bike and passenger ferry to Dürnstein. This is apparently where Richard 1 of England was held for ransome. However it’s also where we had vouchers for free tastes of the local apricot schnapps. Well worthwhile!
- Cycled on through more prettiness and baked air to the outskirts of Krems, before crossing the Danube again and pushing on to Traismauer and tonight’s hotel, Zur Weintraube.
- Despite this being a supposedly short day, we both felt the need to collapse and take in more liquids before doing anything else.
- This hotel prides itself on good local food: rightly so if Elly’s Verhackert-Törtchen (pancakes filled with minced pork and covered in creme freche and local cheese) is anything to go by. My salad was topped with fried potato noodles. (Apparently this is an Austrian thing but I don’t recall having it before.)
- Went for a walk through Traismauer, stopping for more drinks (beer and hot chocolate with rum and whipped cream) at a local cafe. It feels civilised to drink a small, tall glass (krugerl) of refreshing lager outside in a pleasing breeze that complements an otherwise very warm evening: far better than down in some dingy hole downing pints of fizzy piss.
- Back to Zur Weintraube to write this and sleep in preparation for tomorrow’s 45 miles!