From Germany, I made my way across to the beautiful city of Salzburg, Austria. Birthplace of Mozart and of the Sound of Music, and nestled amongst the mountains, this city was small but vibrant. Here, I visited the home of Mozart, appreciated the many beautiful churches and public buildings, watched Sound of Music approximately 2.5 times (no shame), did the magnificent walk to the fortress which sits up on a hill overlooking the city (the views!) with a new friend, went for a small hike up to a monastery, and the most wonderful night was spent at the opening of the Christmas markets; think mulled wine, sweet pretzels and lots of men wearing traditional Austrian get up.

Vienna was my next stop. The weather was dull and rainy, and it began to snow on the last two days I was there, but that just meant that spending the day cradling coffees in cosy Viennese cafes was completely justifiable. I visited the Leopold art museum and the Natural History Museum (so much fun, I felt like a child again!), wandered the city, went to the opera one night and saw Mozart's The Magic Flute (a childhood favourite, so wonderful), appreciated the multitude of magnificent buildings, and discovered the deliciousness of kaiserschmerren and apple strudel at the adorably festive Christmas markets. Many of my nights there were spent relaxing and chatting to fellow travellers with a glass of wine in hand.

Taken on my iPhone, here's a few pictures I took of the beauty that Austria has to offer.


After leaving the Netherlands (somewhat unwillingly), I headed across to Germany. My first stop was in the city of Cologne, somewhere I hadn't initially planned on visiting but it was on the way to Munich from Amsterdam and made sense. I stayed three nights there, wandering the city during the day, climbing the 533 steps up the amazing gothic Kölner Dom (cathedral) tower to get amazing views across the city, visiting the Ludwig modern art museum (definitely one of the better modern art museums I've been too), walking along the Rhein river, making new friends and spending nights drinking too much red wine.

After Cologne, I carpooled across to Munich. It was freezing cold in Munich, but the four nights I spent there were lovely. Unfortunately I just missed out on the famous Christmas markets there, but I wandered the city as they were being set up, ate pretzels, went to the Neue Pinakothek (fabulous collection of impressionist works there) and the Pinokothek der Moderne, spent nights meeting lots of fellow travellers, and did an amazing day trip to the magical Neuschwanstein Castle out in the German countryside.

Here are some pictures taken on my iPhone of my time spent in Cologne and Munich.