Bright and early on the morning of Saturday, August 3rd, Grace settled into the backseat of the car while Errin eagerly took her position behind the steering wheel to drive us across even more beautiful countryside in search of our next destination – Oberstaufen in Bavaria.
We followed along the shoreline of Lake Constance (or as the Germans call it – Bodensee). There were orchards and vineyards on every square inch available.
Luckily, our journey that morning was only about 50 miles.
A little less than halfway, the road veered away from the lake and began a gentle rise into the mountains ahead. Soon we were in the woodsy mountains on a twisty and winding road going higher and higher.
After climbing for a while, a turnout appeared where we could stop, get out of the car and take a look at the new countryside we were in. It was striking! Mountains were all around us, small villages filled the glens, and massive farmhouses dotted the open country.
Grace even noticed something new about her own physical appearance. “Hey, Grandma,” she exclaimed “OMG! Look! From all the walking we’ve been doing, I have developed some muscles! See? I have calf definition!”
She’s so funny! Because she has been rather sickly and dealing with some pretty serious health issues the last few years, she really hasn’t gotten much exercise, so this really was kind of a big deal for her.
We piled back in the car and continue on down the road enjoying the sights. We particularly noticed the unique farmhouses. For starters, they often donned many sets of solar panels on their roofs, and they combine their barns and their houses together into one complete unit! That’s ingenious!
Before we knew it, we arrived in the lovely little village of Oberstaufen and had quickly found the resort we would be spending an entire week at. No more bouncing around from one place to another for a whole week!
It was a lovely resort called Mondi-Holiday We were quite pleased with it. We got checked in, found our suite, and got comfortable. This would definitely suit us for the week.
Errin and I each had a twin bed in the bedroom; Grace got the double-bed fold out in the living room. It had a beautiful little kitchen and dining area where we could cook and eat our main meals, and it even had a couple of balconies! Sweet!
The resort also has many other amenities such as three different kinds of saunas, and gorgeous heated indoor swimming pools, restaurants, trampolines for kids to jump on and playgrounds, tennis courts… you name it – they had it!
We got all settled in. Then we decided to go into the town to find a grocery store to stock our shelves and refrigerator with for the week and also find something to make lunch out of. We found the store quite quickly and then made our way through town to the city park to enjoy our sandwiches in the sunshine.
After eating our lunch, we walked around the park grounds to see what all it had to offer. There were miniature golf links, an outdoor amphitheater, intriguing statues of gnome-like creatures called ‘Geisters’ (which means spirits or ghosts), and a playground that Grace couldn’t resist climbing upon.
As part of our stay at the resort, we were each given an Oberstaufen PLUS card to use the entire week. This card gave us free access to many locals amenities, including free gondola lift rides to the top of the mountain slopes!
They provided a map to all of the hiking trails and chair lifts. We decided to go try out the lift that would take us to the highest point in the nearby mountain!
We were all looking forward to soaking up panoramic views on Hochgrat – the mountain with a big view – with over 300 alpine peaks, Lake Constance in the distance (from whence we came), and all of the western Bavaria region.
Grace was extremely excited to climb aboard the gondola. Although Errin, (how shall I put this?) ‘has issues’ with heights, she none-the-less screwed up her courage and climbed aboard! Because she was feeling uneasy, she decided to keep her eyes closed, for the time being. However, we hadn’t even left the docking station yet!
Not long after, we were well on our way out of the station and making our ascent gradually up the steep incline. The views from the ride up there were stupendous, let alone what would be at the top!
I was so proud of Errin’s bravery. She did open her eyes and enjoyed the views, even though it was extremely difficult for her as we climbed higher and higher!
Once we got to the top, the views were indeed fantastic and outstanding! We could look out and see the Swiss Alps in the distance and back toward Oberstaufen in the opposite direction.
On the deck of the Burgstation, a little birdie kept jumping into the frame of my pictures. He was quite a comedian and attention grabber.
We walked along the mountain top trail for a short while when we came up to a group of cows resting in the grass. Grace just loves animals, so she decided to approach one to see if she could pet it. The cow didn’t seem to mind at all and welcomed her touch. All, and I mean, ALL, cows in this region have bells on their collars and you can hear them tinkling constantly all over the landscape.
The clouds were beginning to gather closer to us, so we decided to make our way back to the gondola below, enjoying the magnificent view along the way.
We climbed back on the gondola and began our descent back down the mountain.
After we disembarked, we noticed a river flowing behind the gondola station, so we sat at its edge, enjoying the crystal clear alpine water. Well, Errin and I did; Grace pulled off her shoes and went in to start building a rock tower to add to the collection that others had already constructed.
We had such fun beginning to explore the new region of Germany we would be visiting for the next 7 days. It was a full day of activity upon arrival, and we were excited about what else this region has in store for us.
The little yellow bed on the left side of the area map below is where the resort is located in Oberstaufen. The blue ‘splats’ show the exciting places we will discover and will be visiting during our time here. It even includes a castle or two! You might just want to stay tuned for more adventures! Until the next installment.