Quinn's kindergarten friend, Aaron, made the long trip across the pond with his fantabulous girlfriend Lisa to come tour Europe with us. We started them off showing them around some of our local haunts including an open cellar weinfest event in Punderich. This town has a bunch of old timber buildings and is a very quintessential Mosel river town.
Open cellar events are fun because each winery in the town open up their cellars and gardens for viewing and make food. There was even some live music and some guy walking around telling jokes and singing. You can see his historical get-up. Not sure what he was all about.
Some of the joys of traveling are receiving mystery food. We were told we were getting some roasted wild boar meat. These look like deli meat slices to me! They were delicious though so can't complain.
On day two Aaron and Lisa were game for a bike ride so we took them on the Maar Mosel Radweg. This is an old train route that they turned into a bike path. It passes by a couple of monasteries, a brewery, and also a renovated castle. The weather cooperated and we even got to stop for a drink along the way. (Quinn doesn't often allow breaks!!!)
These pictures are taken from a scenic viewpoint in Piesport. There is a road called Panoramastrasse that provides the most amazing view of a bend in the river. I love this spot. We got the obligatory photo and then found a winery that has the most amazing patio and view. I cannot believe we had never been to this spot before.
Piesport was also having an open cellar day and they had soup in a bread bowl!
We also went on a little walk through our town and then hiked up the side of one of the vineyards for a view. Man! Those hills are no joke. I could not imagine harvesting the grapes on these hills. This is the first time Quinn and I have ever actually hiked straight up one.
Our town center. Photo credit goes to Lisa. It is neat to see your own town through someone else's view point. It is pretty cute here as long as you are ok with storm clouds.
Lisa and Aaron went to France and Switzerland while Quinn and I worked during the week. Then we all piled in the car to go to the Netherlands. I had found a town called Giethoorn on a buzzfeed list and I really wanted to check it out. It is famous for being a town with no roads. There are only canals and pedestrian paths. This was a very rural area of the Netherlands and our hotel was also right on a canal. The Netherlands never disappoints.
Walking to Blokzijl and checking out the town center. Ethan was hunting sheep. We also met a Dutch/American couple on bikes from Amsterdam who were towing a blow up kayak on their bike trailer. Sounds like a fun adventure.
Giethoorn. The town with no roads.
Our fearless boat captain and his first mate.
This is maybe too many pictures of Giethoorn but it was just so adorable.
We spotted someone wearing wooden clogs. This is a first for me.
We saw quite a few storks and nests along the way.
Lisa found a nest swing. What better way to end a day than a little playtime on the playground.
We spent the next couple of days bumming around Utrecht which is a college town and of course, as is Dutch style, full of canals, amazing architecture, and windmills.
And people wearing costumes while racing row boats.
And people doing the conga out of bars to celebrate
Wait....we know that girl at the end, LISA!!!
Qunn also took us on a pub crawl. It had a little of everything. An old renovated church turned bar, a dive bar with an airplane wing as the liquor stand, and a fancy pants cocktail bar complete with full sprigs of mint and whole slices of cucumber.
We topped it off with a castle drive by.
One last fun quirky tidbit about Utrecht. This was a rainbow crosswalk and take a look at the red stop light. It is a little bunny.
On our last night with Aaron and Lisa we met up with my friend Jochen and his girlfriend Sandy and we all went to dinner at an Abbey near our house. It has quite the picturesque location. We couldn't let them leave without a traditional German meal and Lisa ordered the best dish which was a dumpling with cream sauce and bacon on it. Yum!
We had so much fun with these two and we hope that they enjoyed their European tour. We jammed a lot of activities into their trip and the weather didn't always cooperate but overall it was a fantastic time.