We stopped for lunch in the pretty little town of Hall, Austria the other day. This much smaller version of Innsbruck has attention from Austrian and German tourists who know about it, but it’s virtually overlooked by Americans who are drawn to the larger and more well-known Innsbruck. What I like about Hall is that you can park just a few steps away from the old town, you can walk around without being run over by hoardes of camera-toting tourists, and you can have a great meal in an authentic place without paying through the nose or having a bad experience with a crabby waitress.
After what is probably the best cheese spaetzle I’ve had in my entire 21 year career in working in Europe, we walked around the interesting medieval lanes and then, bellies and curiosity satisfied, drove on for Berchtesgaden.
The Best of Ireland – now available on a private, relaxed tour
Experience Ireland’s charms on this 11-day trip, now available for booking. Extremely limited, we’ll take only four people on this tour and prefer a family or two couples who already know one another for maximum cohesiveness and enjoyment.
Day 1: Arrival at Shannon. We drive about an hour into the heart of Ireland and County Tipperary for a night in a Georgian mansion surrounded by hundreds of sheep – yes, this is Ireland! Relaxation for the afternoon. Unlike big bus tours, we don’t believe in pushing our weary guests too hard on their first day. Tonight, dinner in a pub in the colorful town of Cashel followed by a visit to an ancient abbey.
Day 2: Visit the “Rock of Cashel” and then a drive to the coast where we show you the bright and cheery town of Cobh. It wasn’t always so cheery, this is the place where millions of Irish left their homeland forever during the famine years. We then continue to the little town of Kinsale for two nights. Kinsale is well-known as Ireland’s culinary capital. We enjoy some of that reputation tonight.
Day 3: We explore the Old Head of Kinsale, a hauntingly beautiful old abbey and have lunch at a sparkling bay, taking in the gorgeous countryside of southern Cork before returning to Kinsale for another great meal.
Days 4, 5 and 6: We drive past Cork City on our way to Kenmare. (No, we don’t stop to kiss the Blarney Stone. That’s for the big bus tourists, and besides, yuck! Kissing a stone which has had 4,000 people before you kiss it? No thanks) Three nights at Kenmare’s oldest house, lovingly restored to a very high standard private inn with fabulous breakfasts. During our time here, we explore the Rings of Beara and Kerry.
Kenmare also has a host of excellent restaurants.
Days 7 & 8: Dingle Town and the peninsula where there are hundreds of reminders of Ireland’s ancient past. People have been living here for more than 4,000 years, and we show you some of the remains of that ancient civilization. We stay at a lovely, modern inn located on a bluff high above the town with a spectacular view. By the way, the owners of our inn have been chosen many times as the “Best Breakfast” in Ireland by esteemed travel writers. Experience for yourself!
Day 9: We travel the backroads up to the Cliffs of Moher, one of Ireland’s most famous natural landmarks. Afterwards, we drive to the hamlet of Bunratty where we stay at a B&B just 15 minutes away from Shannon Airport. Dinner tonight in an excellent pub next to our B&B.
Day 10: Departure back to the USA
Minimum guests: 2
Price: Provided without obligation, just ask, but don’t wait too long! This “Best of Ireland” Tour will book up fast. We can do two of these in the month of August only.
Runkel Castle has been built to safeguard the Lahn crossing and has been extended several times. It was first mentioned in an historical document dated 1159 with Siegfried von Runkel. In his function as a trustee of the Reich, he might be responsible for the construction of Runkel. Probably Runkel was founded by the emperor Friedrich Barbarossa. In the year 1634 the palace had been destroyed by Croatian troops of count Isolani and wasn’t rebuilt again
In about 1250 a quarrel started in the family, which ended in the expulsion of Heinrich by Siegfried of Runkel. In the consequent Heinrich sets up Schadeck Castle as a defiance on the opposite of Runkel. It was first mentioned 1288. The history of Runkel and its castle is wild-motioned and feudful, as the following extract will show:
In the year 1288 the families Runkel and Westerburg finally and definitvely divided. 1315 Dietrich von Runkel is mentioned. Dietrich, the third of its name, takes 1376 posession of the Zehnten (tithes?) Schupbach and Aumenau and gives order to build the palace beside the castle.
the Lahn-Bridge is being build, but couldn’t completed until 1448, because of a quarrel with count Reinhard von Westerburg.
Melanchthon, Luther’s friend and helper, is guest of Johann IV von Wied (a nephew of the archbishop Hermann of Cologne) at Runkel palace. 1568 the reformation was introduced to Runkel.
Sovereign count Hermann II was expulsed of palace and reign at 9th of September in a brawl by his younger brother Philipp Ludwig, who ment to been set back at the inheritance.
Runkel’s most disasterous day in the Thirty Year’s War was the 15th of October. The croatians of count Isolani climbed over the walls of the village and burned down the place including its ancient palace.
Runkel was occupied by Hannover,
by the French.
Count Friedrich Ludwig is raised into a heriditary princely rank by emperor Leopold II.
1794 the French Revolution takes effect.
Troops of Darmstadt threw out the French in a nightly street-fight.
the right-sided part of the government Runkel and also the belonging part of the village was attached to the new, by Napoleon created, grand duchy Berg.
Friedrich Ludwig, the last decendant of the house Wied-Runkel died. Wied-Runkel was inheritated by Wied-Neuwied. (See also: Die Herrschaft Wied). Runkel Castle is still the property of the house zu Wied.
PARIS, PROVENCE & CÔTE D’AZUR Micro Group Tour for June or July (Max 5 adults) This trip starts off with two nights in one of the world’s most enchanting cities, with a guide who knows how to make the most of your time. We then move away f...
PARIS, SOUTHWESTERN FRANCE & BARCELONA Micro Group Tour for 2013 This trip starts off with three nights in one of the world’s most enchanting cities, with a guide who knows how to make the most of your time here. We then move away from the ci...
PARIS, PROVENCE & CÔTE D’AZUR Micro Group Tour for July or August or October, 2013 (Max 5 adults) This trip starts off with two nights in one of the world’s most enchanting cities, with a guide who knows how to make the most of your time here....