A Day in Innsbruck

Trip Start Jun 29, 2012
Trip End Aug 07, 2012

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Flag of Austria  , Tirol,
Tuesday, July 3, 2012

We made our connection (hurray!) and boarded the Rail Jet. We had barely pulled out of the station when an attendant came through the cabin and gave us complimentary Kit Kat bars. I guess it is good to be in first class, eh? ;)

The train does not have many stops, and occasionally gets up to 100 miles per hour. Of course, the screen shows the speed in kilometers, but Bryan did the math. :) The attendant came through again later to ask if we'd like anything from the bistro. When the food other people had ordered started to smell way too good, we broke out my thermal tote and put together some little turkey sandwiches. We enjoyed our 7Up and finished the meal off with some dark chocolate.

Now we are in Austria. No one came through at all asking for our passports, so no stamp here. It continues to be very green and beautiful, with villages, farms and church steeples going past. Bryan and I take turns pointing out castles and ruins to each other as we see them. There are many tunnels to pass through, popping our ears because of the pressure changes.

A ways into our train ride, the train pulled out of the station in the opposite direction than it had gone in, so we have been riding backwards for some time. But the seats are comfortable and recline a bit, and we have a power outlet to charge our iDevices, so that is nice. Unfortunately, there is a toddler using the majority of our car as his personal jungle gym. We've become rather better acquainted with him than we might have liked. He seems fascinated with us for some reason and keeps rattling off things in German at us. He sounds very much like he is using the "F" word, which is a little awkward. Thankfully, he has now fallen asleep.

We have read up on where we'd like to stay tonight, and talked about our options for entertainment. We are thinking we may do dinner and a show tonight. If the weather were clearer, there is a tram & cable car that take you up to an Alpine zoo and some beautiful views. But since it is still cloudy, we will probably opt to stay in town.

* * *

We got a nice room at the Pension Stoi here in Innsbruck. The friendly man at the Tourist Information desk called ahead and made the reservation for us. The pension is located close to the train and downtown center, so it is perfect. And we even have our own bathroom and shower. Such luxury, right? ;)

We walked around town and enjoyed the sights, taking lots of pictures. Bryan spotted a gelato shop, and it turned out to have a non-dairy chocolate gelato that I could have. They shaped our scoops like flowers, and boy did they "go down easy," as the Mathers would say.

We visited St. James Cathedral next. It was pretty stunning. I particularly liked the painted ceilings. Not sure that I would want to worship in a space that was so full of different images and sculptures, though. It was a little much. But, I suppose if the sermon were in Latin, it might be just the thing to keep one's mind occupied. ;)

We walked more around town, enjoying the old Imperial Gardens and another church. Then it was time to search out a good place to eat dinner. We walked around and checked out three that were mentioned in our guidebook, and two others that we saw along the way. I chose Weisses Rossl, and I am glad I did!

We went up the stairs and found that it was not quite open yet. We made a reservation for 6pm, and returned then. We were seated on the terrace where a group of lively locals were playing accordion for one another. It couldn't have been more perfect. In total we got to hear eight different musicians ranging in age from ten to seventy. Sometimes they would play together, up to three at a time. At other times, someone would sing along. From time to time someone new would show up and play a song. It was so fun!

The ambiance was perfect: locals all around enjoying themselves, a woman nearby hanging her washing on the line outside her window to dry them in the breeze, a window box full of fresh herbs, no doubt for the kitchen's use. The food was amazing as well. Bryan had a fried fillet of beef with potatoes and onions. He kept saying "These are my people. I feel connected with my ancestors." He also had a beer, and was surprised to find that he enjoyed it. I had sliced pork cooked in brandy served over green beans with bacon and potatoes. We were in heaven!

We even made it home before the rain started to fall. All-in-all, I'd call Innsbruck an epic win. For a stop that we were planning to squish into four hours or so, this was so much nicer.

Back at the hotel, we tried to connect with some folks for a video chat, but no one was home. We've appreciated being able to connect this way and hope we can continue to take advantage of the technology.

Thanks again for all the comments. They make us smile. :)

This really was my favorite meal of the whole trip.  It turns out that Austrian food is by far my favorite cuisine.  I didn't even know that was an option before this trip.  I am so glad we upgraded from a short stop to a full night in Innsbruck.
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quilteratheart on

Beautiful photos! If I understand your blog correctly, you were not planning on spending the day/night in Innsbruck? And now you've had a wonderful time walking around, enjoying a nice meal with entertainment too. What would we do without all of this technology - its like I'm right there with you.

Jaynie on

I wonder what the F word was the little nipper was using on the train. I'm not surprised he was fascinated with you! LOL!!
I'm SO sorry I missed your call today. I was showered and made up and ready for just in case you called. When I was in the car, I looked down at the phone and saw I'd missed a call. DARN! The dinner sounds great!

teamschmidt on

Leslie: Yep, you understand that right. This stop has been an unexpected surprise! :)

Jaynie: Next time just call us back. :) We'd love to chat!

Jax on

I'm loving all your posts and pictures. Living the dream with you! Just wish I could taste the food! ;)

Andrea on

Really enjoying your updates, guys. And I'm glad Bryan found his ancestors. ;)

Ann on

So fun! Loved it..... :-)

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