Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Part Four of Europe: Slovenia and Germany

Hello fellow adventure seekers,

The final leg of mine and Maxx's European adventure from last month.  First off, take a look below.  Maxx and I drove (well, Maxx drove and I rode shotgun) some of the most jaw-dropping, heart-pounding, hairpin turn laden, and winding roads over which either of us has ever traveled, throughout Slovenia.  This was a wild ride and experience, to be sure.

Maxx was literally turning the steering wheel to the extreme left side, then alllllll the way to the right.  Then way back to the left, then turning it over to the far right.

Along the way, we were rounding a bend when, turning to look, we were met with some of the most gorgeous, storybook perfect scenery I have ever seen.  Vast, dramatic, rolling mountains, dotted with varying shades of green.  Everything lush and brilliant.  Just awesome.  See below for the photos I snapped on Maxx so kindly pulling over the car so I could do so.

Looks like something out of Lord of the Rings, eh?

Then, we headed to Tolmin Gorge, along the way to our adventure of white water river rafting in Soca.  We got lost, following the GPS which led us a bit off (in the wrong direction) the beaten path.  I urged Maxx to stop at a hotel in the tiny city center, as they seemed most likely to be able to assist us in getting there. 

The young boy manning the main area inside didn't speak much English, though he did offer me a guide.  I snatched it, running back outside to Maxx, on which he put that new address into our GPS, and we were off.  Agreeing that we would not have found it, had we not stopped to ask.

We arrived at Tolmin about 30 minutes later than anticipated.  With about 30 minutes total to spare in the gorge, I looked at Maxx.

"We have to run then.  We don't have much time!  Let's go!"  And I took off, sprinting through the shade shrouded, cool, hilly wooded pathway.  We ran, up steep inclines, down rocky declines, through thick brush, and along precarious edges.  Finally reaching some of the gorges, with roughly five minutes to spare.  Both of us sweaty and breathing hard.

See below for the photos.

Then, the photos following are from our drive through Slovenia, up to Soca valley.  I couldn't get over it.  Switzerland aside, Slovenia has the most stunning natural scenery I have ever seen.  Vast, towering, dramatic mountains.  Many of which, were craggy and snow-capped.  Others, lush and green.  With tiny, quaint, worn villages punctuating the drive.

We paused in the city of Soca for lunch and wandering.  The two of us agreed, probably one of our lesser awesome meals of the trip, even though at home, it would have been a perfectly decent meal.  We were spoiled in Slovenia though.  The food was mind-blowing.  So mouthwatering, delicious, and high quality.  This surprising both of us.  The best food of the trip, all Slovenia.

Maxx found a little friend ;-)

More gorgeous, glacial blue, impossibly crystal clear, Slovenian water below...

The roads along which we were driving.  So lush and beautiful.

The photos below are the final place we stayed in Slovenia.  In the remote mountainside of Triglav National Park, on a working dairy farm.  This was THE. COOLEST.  We loved it.  Our host, Stanka, was lovely.  Though a bit on the serious seeming side, she was very welcoming.  She went into the little house we rented on site of her own home, lighting us a fire, which later grew to roar.  This was the best.  So cozy and warm later on that evening, when it grew quite chilly.

Check out the scenery below.  We were surrounded on all sides by towering, rocky, dramatic, snow-capped cliffs.  Everything else was lush and green, hilly, dotted with flowers.  The only sound to be heard was cowbells clanking in the distance.  A herd of sheep was sequestered just next door.  Otherwise, the area was remote.  Quiet.  Serene.  Sparsely populated.  And gorgeous.

PS.  I took literally all of the below photos from the backyard of the home in which we were staying!

Our backyard when staying at the dairy farm (!!!!)

The neighboring houses...

And then...the last leg of our trip...back to my stomping grounds of four years (from essentially December 2013 through to August 2017): Frankfurt, Germany!!!!

We spent two days here staying with my dear friends, Melissa, Davor, and their son, Vanja.  We ventured all over Frankfurt, ate in my most loved cafes, and got to spend one on one time with the friends I've remained close to.  I loved this.  Both, the nostalgia and revisiting of my life there, as well as getting to show all of it to Maxx.

Sugar Mama Cafe <3

Bitter und Zart cafe.

Left to right: Maxx, Melissa, me, Judith, Dali, and Ricarda.  So happy :-D

With Judith and Melissa.

Exploring Frankfurt with Judith :-)

Dali :-D

Way cool graffiti, and an even cooler guy ;-)

With Bhakti :-)

And now, onto our experience of white water rafting (this is slightly out of order) in Slovenia on the Soca River.  This was incredibly thrilling for me (though less so for Maxx, since he has gone white water rafting on far more intense conditions previously).  As well as, serene and stunning, scenery wise.  We loved it.

Now, slightly out of order again... ;-) a few more photos from the last leg of our trip in Frankfurt, Germany.

With Amy :)

And, sitting in the Romerberg Square (just Maxx and me) for some black forest cake and a slice of bienenstich (translation "bee sting" cake).

And, back to the rest of the white water rafting photos in Slovenia :-D

Our ten days in Europe together, Italy, Slovenia, and Germany was truly an incredible adventure.  Relaxing, romantic, scenic, undistracted, exciting, laden with delicious meals, and just such fun!

Click here for Part One of our trip to Venice, Italy.

Here is Part Two of Slovenia (Lake Bled and Ljublijana).

Part Three of the trip in Slovenia (Lake Bohinj, paragliding, and loads of great food).

And then this blog entry was the fourth and final part :-D.

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