Brussels -> Grevenbroich -> Koln -> Hamburg


Brussels

That afternoon, we continued to walk around Brussels and for tea we had hot chips and baguette. The next day was Beautiful blue skies and no clouds to be seen, after a massive breakfast we headed to the metro to go to Mini Europa, which is a little village with tiny buildings from all the countries apart of Europe. The expos Atominum was there also.

The mini Europa was cheaper than expected, and was really cool. My favourite was the Eiffel tower, the leaning tower of Pisa. They had interactive ones where you can press the button and things happen… Cindy loved running around and pushing them. There were quite a few kids there and were quite rude pushing in front of us and so on… they obviously consider us Adults and expect that we don’t want to do the fun stuff. We spent awhile walking around and playing on the interactive games. After that we headed to the Atominum (the shiny balls in the photos) this was unveiled in the 58 World Expo. It was quite good ( a little pricey) but you went up these really steep escalators… We also took the elevator up to the top for a 360 degree view of Brussels.

We then went and sat in the sun for half an hour and had some afternoon tea and Cindy scared the Pigeons when they got too close to us. After this we caught the metro back and went and got some food for dinner.

The next day we were meant to go to Bruges, Cindy had done all this research of things to see and things to do. So after breakfast, we walk to the train station and find out it will cost 50 euros for the both of us for a return ticket. That’s like 85/90 dollars for a train trip that last 1 hour each way. We couldn’t justify the price so we trudged back to the hotel and hung out there for the morning and then headed into the city in the afternoon, we went to a pub later on and had a drink and a small afternoon tea/lunch.

On Thursday, our last day in Brussels we went and found the Drug Opera and La Lunette (two pubs mum and dad used to go to when they lived in Brussels)… As there drinks/Ice cream and food was very expensive we just looked at the outside and took a photo. We walked around and found a great little pub that did 1,2 euro beers and strongbow so I had quite a few different beers. We then went and had a pizza… and then walked back to the hotel.

Germany

Our last morning we were taken to the train by a courtesy bus from the hotel and then caught the metro to the euro lines bus stop. We waited for a while and then jumped on the bus, it took a while to get there but when we got to Dusseldorf we got a train to Grevenbroich where Jackie (one of my parents old friends) picked us up. We hung out with Jens and Cindy played badminton with him. Louisa was having a party – so she had her friends over. Gert gave me 2 different beers to try, which were very nice.

This morning Jackie baked some pretzels for breakfast which were yummy! We played a Lego game and I won, and then Jackie helped us book our train tickets to Berlin from Hamburg. Cindy and Jens are playing a Pokemon game.. I think Cindy won… I don’t know. We’re going for lunch now so type soon.

Lunch was great; Gert, Jackie and Gert’s sister took us to the little restaurant/cafe in a garden of a castle. It was really nice – we all had a nice sparkling white wine. Cindy got the curry wurst and I had a wurst with a beer mustard sauce. Both were very tasty (as I had some of Cindy’s too). Very Delicious.

Jackie helped us book some transport to Hamburg and to Berlin. That night we played some Wii and some other games, we had cool deserts which were animal shaped ice-cream.

The next day, Gert dropped us off at the train station on the way to church – we were going to Koln (Cologne). We had a great walk along the water, and we went to the chocolate factory (Lindt Chocolate). We got in as students 😀 and got a free mini chocolate each. The museum bits were a little boring but the highlights were the “tropical room” where you go in and see/feel how hot/warm it is in a tropical climate – It just brought back memories of the heat from home… and the old chocolate vending machines. However the cool parts were the actual factory bits where you saw the chocolate being made, we got to try some liquid chocolate on a wafer stick and it just melted in your mouth. Cindy’s favourite machine was the air lifter and it transported chocolate from one conveyer belt to another with air pressure (we’ll put a video up soon). The next floor was watching how they make molded chocolates – that was pretty cool – we also saw the machines that put the final touches on Lindt Truffel balls an then the lady was packing them up. She saw us watching and came and gave us one each – They are selling them for 50 cents in the store (so about 1 dollar). The chocolate was amazing, it just melted and was gooey and soooooo tasty.

We bought some chocolates from the shop (they were marked down after Easter) – we got some good buys! We walked around Koln and saw the big Cathedral – had some lunch. The train station’s toilets were 1 euro to use and the showers were 7 euros… I thought that was insane prices!! We bought 3 pretzels for 1.69 euros – very cheap – we had one each and kept the other one for a snack. We then headed back to Grevenbroich.

That night Jackie cooked a lovely lamb meal which was delicious. We hung out at the table and talked for a while and Jens played with some gifts we got him (It’s his birthday today{Monday}). Gert told us about growing up in Germany – it was quite eye opening.

The next morning we left at 5:30am – Jackie took us to the meeting point where we were catching a car – with a guy who was driving to Hamburg. This was the cheapest option of getting there… everything else was excess 100 euros. So the guy was okay – he spoke English an German… We picked up another girl in Dusseldorf – which was good because that meant they spoke to each other while we sat in the back of his nice BMW. He drove very scarily… At one time he was going 180kms… He also didn’t believe Australia had traffic on the road… he thought Australia was very small and we wouldn’t get traffic… he then said oh maybe Sydney… as if Sydney was the only busy place in the entire country…(moron!). We had a quick stop at McDonald’s and kept going. It took awhile to get to Hamburg – but we got there safely and found our hostel very easily.

We weren’t able to check in straight away so we wandered around the streets and looked in some shops, some shops were very cool – the supermarkets here are AMAZING! They have soo much of everything. Very cool.

Hostel is very nice – our room has like a tiny 2 bed room in the room so we’re in this little room – so we don’t get disturbed by other people. We met this really nice Aussie at dinner and ended up chatting with her for most of the evening.

We’ve also booked a bus to Prague after Berlin and we’re staying in a nice place for 4 nights  and then a bus to Munich.

Okay well that’s the update – I’m quite tired been up since 5am.

Hope all is well at home…

We’ll try to Skype soon.

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