The View is Worth the Climb in Budapest

(September, 2012) We rode the fun funicular up to the old castle hill on the Buda side of Budapest. Once up there, we were treated to a splendid view over the Pest side with spires of Buda down below. The Danube really is blue, on a clear day.

Celebrating a Birthday at Hirschhorn Castle

September 10, 2012 Sometimes while on a trip around Germany one just has to say “why not?” and go to a castle for a dish of ice cream to celebrate a birthday. That’s what we did the other day to celebrate our guest Beth Renney’s birthday. Up, up, up we drove into the hills above […]

The Odenwald’s Silent Sentinal

September 10, 2012 Like a stone sentinal guarding the rolling hills of the Odenwald Forest, Auerbach Castle high above Bensheim-Auerbach has stood tall for more than 800 years. We visited this ruin on a warm September day while exploring ancestral Bensheim and Mannheim nearby. Auerbach Castle was built by Charlamagne and then rebuilt and enlarged […]

Sleeping in a medieval castle above the Rhein River in Germany

July 30 There’s no experience quite like spending the night in a castle high on a bluff above one of Europe’s prettiest river valleys. Recent guests of ours had this experience and for some, it was a repeat experience. Susan brought son Nick back for a second European Focus Private Tour and this time, four […]

Welcome new arrivals to Ireland

Jim and Betsy Cooke arrived in Dublin on October 8 to begin their 8-day tour in Ireland with European Focus. This is Jim and Betsy’s second tour with us since their first in the fall of 2008, which took place in Germany. After their early arrival at Dublin’s International Airport, the morning was spent on […]

Postcard from Germany

Ehrenburg Castle on the Rhein River near Bingen at sunset on October 4.

Mad King Ludwig’s Gigantic Cash Cow Neuschwanstein Castle Germany

When the Bavarian ministers decided to drag crazy King Ludwig II out of his still unfinished fantasy castle in 1886 and throw away the key (he was found dead a short time later, “mysteriously drowned” in about three feet of water. Note that the Krazy King was more than six feet tall) they should have […]

Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany

Walt Disney used Neuschwanstein Castle as inspiration for Sleeping Beauty Castle. A stunning late fall day at Neuschwanstein Castle, near Schwangau, Germany. The temperature was right at 1 Celsius, but the sun and the total lack of any wind made it bearable. The visibility was unlimited, with villages and lakes stretching off to the horizon […]