Wednesday, 4 November 2015

a tale of seven cities

"We few, we happy few, we band of brothers ....." (and sisters) set forth adventuring
After watching the magnificent RSC live screening of Henry V at the Showroom Cinema on the Wednesday, starring the very dishy Alex Hassell and enjoying all those lines I'd learned for 'O' level, like the wonderful 'We are the makers of manners, Kate", we hastily packed and rendezvoused with the London crew at St Pancras on Friday 23 October.

Boarded the first of our trains, the Eurostar, and zoomed through the Channel Tunnel to Brussels for our first stay at the swish Pullman Hotel right slap bang in Brussels Midi station!  
An early start on Saturday sees our happy band hurtling southwards before sunrise on a super-duper ICE train through Germany
with coffees to wake us

close up views of the magnificent Cologne Cathedral
and croissants to keep us going
crossing the mighty Rhine - the sense of journeying is brilliant,  so much more exciting than flying
Changed trains at Frankfurt
and onwards to Vienna
Great restaurant car on this ICE train and it was dishes of the day washed down with draft German beers
getting further and further south and east and sunnier and warmer by the mile
Glasses have also got to be raised to Mark, the wonderful Man in Seat Sixty One who made all this possible with his meticulous route information.  Even the 5 minute change at Wurtzburg went a treat!
We cross the Austrian border, passing idyllic rolling countryside dotted with smallholdings, ponds, orchards, woodlands radiant in the autumn sun, unfenced fields of late crops, lovely houses with huge sloping roofs and brightly painted walls, pretty churches with tall towers and finally we arrive in the new, swish and shiny Wien Hautbahnhof around 5pm for our stay in Vienna.  

Quick stock up at a local SPAR and then to our fabulous AirBnB courtesy of the amazing Monika.  More pics of the apartment here, it really was stunning, but suffice to say we were greeted with a steaming pot of coffee and this fabulous cake!! Which for obvious reasons I was too slow to get a picture of in tact!
Not ones to linger long - we were soon out and about for our evening meal at the swish Skopik and Lohn
which was amazing, delicious and great fun
then a final nightcap and panoramic night views of Vienna 18 floors up at the rooftop Sofitel bar designed by Jean Nouvel
and so to bed, perchance to dream (of cakes and cakes and cakes) . . .

If you want to follow this holiday - then click here for Sunday

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