One of goals for visiting Bavaria was to see some of the Bavarian countryside. We have never seen so many green rolling hills, shorn by cows and sheep, spreading out so far and wide. Fully the width and breadth of the area between Munich and Meersburg blessed us with long stretches of country roads amidst these pastoral climes. Of course, the further south we went, the closer we came to the taller mountains we had descended through from Switzerland.
The Best Advice
Before we departed Munich, we had a wonderful chat with Inis, our most amazing host. She provided us with some fabulous tips on seeing the area in the south. Perhaps the best tip we received in our travels was to enjoy the scenery coming into the Garmisch-Partenkirchen area and then make your way through the town itself to the Austrian resort town of Lermoos and have lunch at the Mohr Life Resort. Bingo! The scenery coming into town was lovely, the town not so much, and the resort blew our socks off. We had a very good lunch in the shadow of sheer cliffs with a combination of glacial remnants and patches of fresh snow on the higher scalps. Just warm enough to sit outside, we were able to take in a grander sense of the Alps. A fun side note was that in the green valley between the resort and the mountains, there were several model plane enthusiasts flying those larger gas powered planes that look pretty impressive in the air. Of all the places we visited, the one place that we could see ourselves returning to was Lermoos.
We chose to stay outside of Fussen and Schwangau at Fussen am Hopfen. Neuschwanstein Castle is very close by and we drove to it earlier and returned after settling in to assess whether a visit would be essential. After much consternation, we decided against it as we had visited the Schonbrunn in Vienna, the museum of the Lobkowicz Palace in Prague, as well as the Museo di Piazza San Marco, in Venice. A visit to crowded parking lots and long queues did not fit well with these travelers. We appreciated what we learned about Ludwig II online on our own, and it seemed far more interesting to learn about the King himself as we had seen the lavish, wealthy residences of previous Kings, Queens, Princes and Princesses before. Add in that you must pay to park, pay to take the bus to the castle, pay separately for each castle and the museum, and we decided to be grateful that the area has such a generous benefactor for their economic well-being and was making it possible for smaller villages like Fussen am Hopfen, which was on a beautiful small lake and exceptionally charming, to thrive.