Got in early and planned to stay the day before heading onwards to Berlin at night. From Amsterdam I took five trains to get to Wolfsburg...thankfully european trains are very efficient because all but one of the connections where less than ten minutes long. The one that was longer was just over four hours...my sleeping point for the night.
Thankfully it wasn't raining...just a little windy as I camped out under the stars and the bright platform lights of the Venlo, Amsterdam train station. Very nice.
I went to Wolfsburg to visit the Autostadt
, built for Expo 2000 held in nearby Hannover, Germany.
Autostadt is a 25-hectare theme park devoted to cars - mostly VW cars - built right beside their main, and original, factory. There are pavilions for each of its brands, a crazy car delivery system for people who want to pick up their car right from the factory, restaurants and even a Ritz-Carlton hotel. I assume the Ritz Carlton is used more for the Bentley, Lamborghini and Audi customers and not so much for the VW, Skoda and Seat ones.
By far, the coolest part of the Autostadt was the off-road course with the brand new VW Touareg (new version was only three weeks old when I drove it) complete with a professional driver. I'm terrible with names but my driver had been to Winnipeg recently within the last year with his wife...apparently Winnipeg has too many shoe stores.
He did one lap of the track than I did one lap. The Touareg is impressive in off-road conditions but less than 2% are actually used as they are designed...the other 98% are prestige purchases and rarely, if ever, leave a paved road. But at over $60,000 cdn to start, I can understand that a person who spends that much on a vehicle wouldn't be heading to the mountains every weekend with it.
However, as was explained, the Touareg trunk is big enough for as many shoes as any wife could ever want...it's that big.