Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Bacharach and Burg Stahleck

This was our most pleasant day of biking along the river. We did have rain off and on for maybe half of the days of biking, but it was never so heavy that we really needed to put on our rain coats. We biked north a little bit to catch a ferry across the Rhine. There are no bridges across the Rhine between Koblenz and Mainz, a distance of about 95 kilometers, or 57 miles.
Then we came to the town of St. Goar, famous for its large Rheinfalls castle. We found a pleasant street cafe to eat at. Then we headed to Bacharach. We arrived early and stayed overnight in a castle again, the one in the first photo. This is Burg Stahleck and it is a youth hostel. It is in great condition. The outside looks very much like a castle but the inside is just like any modern youth hostel.
A word of warning though. If you are biking along the Rhine and then staying overnight in castles, it is helpful to know that castles are usually built upon bluffs many meters above the Rhine. We had a huge hill to walk up to get to the castle.
I continue to search for ice cream flavors that I cannot find in America. Here in Bacharach, which is named after the Roman god Bacchus, the god of revelry and wine, they had a Riesling flavored ice cream and another called Waldmeister. Riesling is one of the wines that is made along the Rhine, and waldmeister is an herb called Woodruff in English, which doesn't really help me. Both tasted good.
It was nice to be able to relax a bit more on this second day after a long day before. We had a pleasant time, except for my difficulty in getting money. But fortunately the youth hostel took our debit card.

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