While in Austria we thought it best to not only enjoy the town we were staying in but, to also venture out of town into the surrounding mountains!
Since we had no interest in renting a car and public transportation is incredible in Europe we decided to take a bus! We struggled a bit trying to figure out the routes but between several errors, some high stress situations and a lot of help from the internet we are now pros at the entire bus system in Austria! Ha!
Our bus didn’t leave until 10:45 so we tried to make the most of the morning! We strolled down Getreidegasse which is known for all of it’s iron signs. Retailers, by law, have to have them! Check out the McDonald’s one! 😂 This is where almost all the shopping in town is and it’s even prettier when it’s all lit up at night! This is also the street that Mozart’s birthplace is on. It’s the yellow house!
to the bus station early so we could catch our 10:45 bus but that was a mess! We decided we were going to take a taxi but right as we were talking to him we saw our bus pull up (15 minutes late) and we ran as fast as we could to it since the next one didn't come for several hours! Whoa!
We rode the bus through all the cutest little towns right outside of the city and it was the best! We had to get off our original bus (route 150) and then pick up the next route (155) to connect us to where our final destination was, Hintersee! This is when we met bus driver Thomas!
s was absolutely wonderful and almost had me in tears at how nice he was! He made us sit right up front by him so we could have the best view and so he could talk to us about the country he loves so much! He even shared his email with us so he can let us know where all the best spots to travel are for next time! We were riding through these towns when kindergarten was getting out so all of the little kids were getting on and off the bus! They don't have school buses like we do in America, they just ride the public transportation. Thomas was so sweet to them and it was so cool to see children navigating public transportation better than Erica and I. Amazing the things children can do if we give them freedom and have confidence in them. Thomas talked to a lady on the bus and she told us the best place to hike around Hintersee! It was absolutely perfect! The sun was out, there was some snow on the ground, the water was crystal clear, and there were horses and mountains everywhere!
Hintersee we decided we hadn't had enough of the mountains so we decided to take a bus to Mondsee.
Such a great decision! This time the bus ride (route 155 to 140) was filled with middle and high school kids who were taking the bus home from inside the city to the countryside, where they live. It's at least a 45 minutes ride through the country and into the mountains! Again, they were so independent, incredibly mature and well behaved. I hope they know how lucky they are to live in such a beautiful part of the world!
Mondsee was awesome! It's where the cathedral from The Sound of Music is and it has a lake right in the center of town. The lake is surrounded by mountains on one side and on the other are rolling green hills where all the houses are! Dreamy!
Mondsee we took the bus back home and headed out to dinner and then opening night of the Christmas Markets!!!!!
It was straight out of a dream! The smell of delicious food was in the air, Christmas trees and decorations were everywhere, ice skating in the town square, warms drinks, and the cool temps made it perfect. Christmas is my favorite time of year and I just can't put into words how cool this was! An unforgettable experience; opening night at one of the most famous Christmas Markets in all of Europe! It's hard to believe places like this exist!
the market we took the bus back to our apartment and went to bed! We were exhausted!
It sure was a Thanksgiving well spent in Europe!
"Be thankful for your life, spend time in nature, breathe deeply, let go of your worries, forgive yourself and forgive others, and build your life around what you love.”