We jetted back to Germany for the start of our European road trip across the south of Germany, Switzerland and Austria. Our first destination was Stuttgart, where three of Adam’s Australian gliding friends are currently living. We met Jess on our first day for a guided tour of Stuttgart’s city centre. We saw all the attractions in no time and headed for a cafe for traditional German lunch of egg noodles and sausages. That evening we met up with the other gliding friends, Andy and Claire, for dinner and made some plans to visit a castle and the headquarters of gliding manufacturer Schempp Hirth later in the week. Adam couldn’t wait!
Rental car in hand, we spent our next day braving the autobahn on a drive to Heidelberg. We were doing about 140km and would have been by far one of the slowest cars, our Airbnb host proudly told us his car (an Astra) could do 240km. Yikes. Anyway we made it safely to Heidelberg—a very pretty town with an old bridge and castle. We we walked around the town, all the while dodging huge groups of tourists and enjoyed the sun and the architecture before driving back to Stuttgart.
On our final day before hitting the road, we headed to the small town of Kirchheim unter Teck, home to the Schempp Hirth glider factory. Andy gave us a guided tour of all the areas of the factory—it was fascinating to see all the stages of a glider being put together, all in the same factory that Adam’s glider was built in over 40 years ago. Following the factory tour, we took a drive for a walk around one of the many castles overlooking the town, enjoying a coffee while looking at the view from the top, before a beer back in Kirchheim.
From Stuttgart we drove to the Black Forest where we stayed in a quaint Airbnb in the middle of nowhere, it was fantastic—we particularly loved the log fire that was roaring when we arrived (it was frosty outside already) and Adam enjoyed the home made schnitzel that was on offer. We only had two nights here but we made the most of it, driving through the forest with the autumn colours surrounding us and the sun shining. It was very pretty. We made at a stop at Treiberg, birthplace of the cuckoo clock, and home to the highest falls in Germany to walk around a little. Having earned a treat we stopped for Black Forest gateau on the way home…how could we not!?