Across the Rhein to the Deutche Wein Strasse

Dave the motorhome’s excited. It’s been nigh on a year since we last saw our friends Jacqui and Marc at their home in Stuttgart, and now they’re on their way to meet up with us at a park-side stellplatz a short walk from Annweiler, in the Pfälzerwald Nature Park (N49.19623 E7.96986). It’s free to stay here, and a fill up of water costs a whole €1.

Dave at the free stellplatz in Annweiler. The space up front is just waiting for our mates to slot into!

Dave at the free stellplatz in Annweiler. The space up front is just waiting for our mates to slot into!

Travelling Germany in a motorhome is a laid-back affair. It’s far from Italy’s manic towns and cities, with roads naturally tight and squeezed down to nothing by half abandoned cars, like a tipped-up nipper’s play-chest of matchbox toys. Places to stay here are plentiful and often free; there’s none of the hunting about for semi-legal kipping spots like in Spain and Portugal. LPG’s everywhere, whereas in Morocco it was completely un-gettable, no matter how freezing it was up in the High Atlas. The free motorways are a dream, a complete opposite of the ripped-up moon-scapes of Ukraine.

Motorway cruising - lots of Dutch folks on the road south at this time of year.

Motorway cruising – lots of Dutch folks on the road south at this time of year.

It’s maybe a bit too easy (surely only an Englishman can moan about something being too easy?). We’ve found whenever we have been here that although it’s super clean, safe, has some fantastic scenery and welcoming folks, we feel the urge to keep on moving, to find somewhere just a bit more, erm, difficult?

Yesterday we slept well on the free stellplatz, and this morning Ju nipped to a small market, made up of immaculate stalls, and stocked up on bread, pain au chocolat and a Danish pastry, before we serviced Dave and drove off. Sat nav picked a winning combination of free autobahn, A and B roads, and winged us here. There’s not much to say about the trip. We avoided caught out by a weird dual-slip road thing on the motorway, where you have to get off the junction before the one you need, and coped OK with the occasional slip road which doubles up as both the entry and exit. The Rhine/Rhein sneaked up on us, announced before the river-side sign by a huge industrial complex at Mannheim.

The mighty Rhine.

The mighty Rhine.

 

An outline of hills grew up to our left and rushed us, smothered in lush vineyards as we crossed the German Wine Route just before arriving here. Our motorway route had run parallel to this for a while, one of Germany’s many, many tourist roads, so we didn’t see much on the way. Our route south can take us along it though, and I’m keen to get up close to the vines. Throughout our months on the road we’ve seen vines in a fair few countries (German and French vineyards are perfect, Italian ones too), and have seen the vines from their left-for-dead leafless state in winter all the way through to being loaded with swinging juicy fruit. I’d like to see Germany’s vines fully loaded, at their most magnificent.

DSC04928

Vines!

DSC04919

Pick ’em yourself flowers.

DSC04924

A flipping hot day to be out in the full-on sun.

So, it’s Friday night and our friends have finished work and will be on the road in their motorhome by now. We’ve had a walk around the town, which was busy shutting up shop, and we’ve a BBQ planned. A couple of beers are in the fridge, which is fighting 35 degrees plus temperatures to keep ’em cool, what a trooper! We’re so excited to see these guys again, we’re ready for a re-union!

DSC04937

Eyes in the back of your neck?

DSC04938

Ooh, I’m getting paranoid now.

DSC04939

Eyes! Everywhere!

DSC04942

Annweiler

DSC04954

There are no ‘no-balls’ signs here!

DSC04953

4 bed detached, £100k? Have I read that right?

DSC04946

Cheers, Jay

Oops! Tad too much Wein at Kapellen Weinfest, Germany
A surprise Stellplatz in Michelstadt, Germany
Share this post:FacebooktwitterFacebooktwitter

10 Comments on Across the Rhein to the Deutche Wein Strasse

  1. How long have you been traveling now

    • Hi Denise, just over 22 months now, and we’ve still not managed to get up into Scandinavia. Must try harder! Cheers, Jay

  2. Dolly and Rolf // August 2, 2013 at 8:09 pm // Reply

    Hello Julie and Jason,
    we wish you a nice day in Annweiler.

    Do you remember us from Shigishoara in Romania?

    If you are tomorrow still in Annweiler you can have “Germans best meal” there in the restaurant Gerberei!

    If you go there many greetings to Sabine Böhley who is the kitchen chief there!
    We both love her phantastic meals!!

    —- taste her Romantic Dinner —-

    Have a nice trip on your way home

    Dolly and Rolf Fütterer

    74336 Meimsheim
    Lauffenser Str. 37

    • Hi Dolly and Rolf! Of course we remember, did everything go OK with your new dogs? Thanks for the tip, it sounds a wonderful place. Our friends with us plan to take us to another town later today, after we have seen the famous castle here, so sadly we will miss it, but next time…! We are on our way to a wine festival, very exciting. After we left you we crossed Ukraine, wow, we found some REALLY bad roads, but our van is OK, we went very slowly. Jay xx

  3. No, you haven’t read the Estate Agent right. That will be 4 rooms in total, not including kitchens and bathrooms. But 108m2 would be a decent sized 3 be 1100 sq ft, so a decent size 2-3 bed place I reckon.

  4. Hi Ju & Jay,
    Really enjoyed following your tour over the past 22 months, just sad that it will soon be ending! Hope you will still let us know how you are getting on when you return.
    BTW sorry to say house prices aren’t that cheap in Germany, that price is just for a four roomed loft conversion not the whole house. :-}

    • Hi Barry, thanks for writing and for the house info. I think we’d tour until we dropped if we could, still Scandinavia, the Baltic states, Turkey and Georgia to see, then there is Australia and the Americas, then good old sub Saharan Africa! We plan to keep the blog going, but with less frequent updates. We are always interested to know how other ‘gap year’ travellers find going home and finding work, so we hope anything we write might be of use to others. Still got a month to go though in beautiful and tasty France. Cheers, Jay

  5. Hi Jay and Julie, We Have Been following your blog daily. We are an New Zealand couple making plans to do 6 months in a Motorhome in Europe next year.I will miss your daily emails when you are home, it helps keep me focused on our goal as we cope with the daily grind of work.New Zealand is a beautiful place to cruise in a Motorhome.
    Jan and Chris

    • Thanks Jan

      Will you set up a blog for your travels? Then you’ll be able to help us through the daily grind back in the UK!

      Julie :)

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.


*