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Report 866: Castles, Caves and Cablecars

By wendy lynn from California, U.S.A., Spring 2005

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Page 3 of 16: The Sound of Music Tour

photo by Wendy

The Sound of Music Tour: Schloss Leopoldskron

The day started out with Joe awake and everyone else asleep. Brother was sleeping on the floor, having rolled off the lower part of the kids’ bunkbed. (Julia was thrilled to have a bunkbed and had promptly called dibs on the top bunk.) Joe claims Wendy refused to get up, but we all eventually made it down to the restaurant to eat in time to make it to the shuttle for the Sound of Music tour.

In contrast to the previous evening’s dinner and our breakfast at the Weisses Kreuz, breakfast at Simmerlwirt was a bit of a disappointment. It was a decent enough spread of meat, cheeses and brotchen but not much else. Alex loved the brotchen. “I like Brotchen; Brotchen is good for me.” Wendy wanted more of the good coffee. By the end of our stay there, they would automatically bring us two pots.

The Sound of Music tour was mostly a long bus ride past places Joe barely remembered from the movie. Julia and Mom were a little more appreciative. Alex enjoyed playing with the food trays on the bus. We did, however, learn a lot about the “real” Von Trapp family. Apparently Maria was a tough cookie who forced the children into a singing career to escape the depression and did not really love the captain. Joe found the places on the tour to be pretty non-descript. This confirms that we are not “tour” people. Julia, however, thoroughly enjoyed the tour including the Sommerrodelbahn (summer toboggan ride) we stopped at. One of the highlights of the tour for Joe was the somewhat mummified, mostly skeletal body of some renaissance Abbot on display at the church in Mondsee (next to the “crisp apple strudel”). Our guide’s Austrian accented English and quirky phrases did provide us with lots of smiles for the remainder of our trip.

Afterwards, we discovered that although the company provided a van to get us to the tourbus, it did not provide the reciprocal ride home. Just as well, we decided to stay in the city and ended up quickly at the Mirabell Gardens. The kids played with a bunch of friendly Österreichers in a playground. Then we dashed through a hedge maze. We soon found our way across the Salzach River, where we discovered a miniature excavator digging a hole. Brother and Joe watched it while Mom and Julia hit a souvenir shop. We found our way into the Old Town—pretty cool. While we were in the Alt Stadt, we took a horse drawn carriage. Julia was in heaven, especially when invited to sit in front by the woman driver who spoke excellent English and had lived for a while in the States. Brother fell asleep in the back.

We decided to brave public transportation as the busstop was right there on the river, and the #25 bus distinctly said “Groedig.” How hard could it be? It wasn’t! In fact, in about 10 or 15 minutes, it dropped us one block from Simmerlwirt. Another good dinner, and it’s time for bed.

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