Let’s revisit a hot day in July 2014. The sun was high in the sky, the Alpine mountains were abundant in their summer beauty and I was lost, lost, lost I tell ye! As someone who is stubbornly proud of their bird-like navigation ability I continued down a winding road alongside the Bavarian Alps. Not that I minded of course. It’s sort of pretty I guess.
A crystal clear river, storming its way through a quaint Alpine town straight out of a Grimm’s Brother fairytale, encapsulated by rolling mountains. Not too shabby am I right? How did I even end up walking around the fecking Alps? Well, like plenty of mad bastards, I wanted to see the world’s most badass castle. Check out this bad boy. wikipedia.org. Even a million heart-eyed emojis can describe how incredible Neuschwanstein castle is. I, like everyone else, knows this to be the Disney castle. The real f*cking Disney castle. I’ve been to Disneyland before, but of course I needed to take it one step further. However this is not what you’ll find written on any sign post or map, helpful. I had travelled 3 hours* from Munich (*the journey may or may not been lengthened by getting the wrong train an hour in the wrong direction), a little hungover from the numerous amount of German beer enjoyed the night previous. This was me the day before.
This was me traveling to see said castle the next day.
Sidenote: they have f*cking ‘beware of the EAGLES signs’ no biggie.
It’s safe to say I was having an off day. I also had to buy those sunglasses in the town beside the castle because I lost my other on the safari that was getting there. After getting off the train and buying a new, god awful pair of floral sunglasses reminiscent of the ones you wear when you’re four, I set off to find the pretty castle.
5 km to the castle.“Grand. Sure I can walk that.”. Why wouldn’t I? The town beside Neuschwanstein castle is adorable. Füssen is this tiny town, filled with souvenir shops selling cow bells, ice cream shops on cobbled streets and colourful buildings. I was chuffed. I didn’t have too long to daddle sadly. I had approximately 5 hours until the last train from Füssen back to Munich, so to the castle I went!
I went out of the picturesque town, across the bridge (see above) and took a confident right. The downfall of my journey. Because who knew that right led you to f*cking Austria right?
Google maps (and my sick editing skills)
I believe it was the mixture of my enthralment with the beauty of nature, my fascination with the mountains (I live in Ireland, which is flat as a pancake) and lack of brain cells caused by my Bavarian antics that led me on a two hour diversion into Austria. But what I discovered was b-e-a-utiful! I introduce to you, Lech Falls.
In the midst of getting worryingly confused, I had stumbled upon a sample of heaven! The noise of this crashing water, that has this turquoise tint to it, appearing to be a little foggy was one of the highlights of my interrailing experience. Around the corner I continued to walk until I found my own slice of serenity beside the river, where this was my view.
This was one of the most satisfying moments of my life. Yes I amused that I had gotten completely lost, but I was so happy that I did. The road less taken, or accidentally taken in my case, and all that. Neuschwanstein castle is probably the most famous castle in the world, and although I did find my way to it eventually, I don’t regret getting lost.
When I eventually turned around and walked an hour back towards Füssen
Upon reflection I think it’s pretty obvious that I was blindly hungover and over-eager to cross the Disney castle off my bucket list. What I find funny about the whole experience is that I didn’t set out to see anything else whilst in Füssen, I literally took a right instead of left. That’s all.
It made me think about how we always have a setlist of things we what to see wherever we go. London’s Big Ben, Peru’s Machu Picchu, the Sydney Opera House and so on. I wanted to share this story because memories like the ones I made that day don’t come often, and they’re rarely attached to the big globally-known sights. Some of the best parts of traveling is getting lost, otherwise you’d just shuffle from landmark to landmark.
The lesson is – if you get lost, embrace it.
Lazy Gal Out x o x