Dr. Hoffer's Travel WebSite This site was last updated 05/13/19
GREECE17 #2 MUNICH to VIENNA
FLAG of VIENNA
July 10-13, 2017
Monday, July 10, 2017
I really slept solidly because I remember nothing until I woke up at 12:45 PM (my time) to use the bathroom and went right back to sleep until I woke again at 2:45 AM; as usual ~30 minutes before landing. As we approached the airport, I took a few shots out the window.
We landed in Munich at 3:45 AM EDT (9:45 AM CET) at Strauss Airport, Terminal 2 and got off the plane (below left). I was surprised by the sign announcing that my dollars would buy more here. It usually doesn't.
We got on this sleek tram that took us to the escalator climbing way up.
I turned my EU phone with the German chip on and immediately called the Peugeot place ( +49-693-329-6246) to tell them we were here. After we got our bags, we flew through the Immigration and Customs checkpoint and went straight out to the taxi line to wait for them to come and get us.
Danny (below left) arrived at 11:00 AM and helped put our bags in his car and drove us to the AutoEurope [Portland, ME, +1-888-223-5555] station (below right) a couple of miles from the airport. I went in and did my usual signing their documents and he then showed us some things about our brand new car, which we now own (until we leave).
Our brand new Peugeot 308 (#5013313) with automatic transmission (above and below) cost us $3,055 for the three months, which I had paid in advance back in April. This comes to $36/day to lease a brand new car with all the amenities. The odometer read 15 Km (9.3 miles). Our French license plate was neat; it was EN (English)-455-LA (Los Angeles), easy to memorize. You can see that it expires in December 2017.
I started the 23 mile (37 Km) drive to the center of Munich (Altstadt) but since the tank was not full, I figured it was a good idea to fill up the tank and stopped at the first station we found before getting on the Autobahn. It was an OMV Super station and the price was €1.309/Liter and our fill came to €52.15/39.84 Liter or $5.65/gal. Since I hadn't been walking in mud, I was surprised to see the muddy floor mats when I got back in (below right).
We are familiar with this long ride to the hotel, having done it many times. At 12:00 PM, we pulled right in front and checked into the Mercure Altstadt Hotel (below) [Hotterstraße 4, +49-8-923-2590]. I had booked it on Booking.com for $447.41 for three nights (€422.64) and we were given Room #104 on the second floor as I requested.
From above, you can see the "front" of the hotel, but the entrance (above right) is down Hotterstrasse street just to left of it. Below is a shot of all our bags that we brought with us on the plane. A little less than in the past: Marcia is learning to cut back a bit. I was surprised that our luggage was labeled "Priority". Was that because we were Business Class?
How good it is to return to a place you have stayed at many times over twenty years; the warm friendly smiles.
We got our bags up to the room, unpacked and got organized and by 1:00 PM I went next door at the new restaurant called Paisano (10 Färbergraben, +49-892-554-4288) and had a cappuccino for €3.70 ($).
As of Dec 2018, I have learned that Paisano is now closed.
I met the owner two years ago, but he wasn't there now.
After I finished, I walked down the street to this water sports equipment store (below) called Sub Sea Water Sports [Färbergraben 12, +49-897-263-9380] a few doors down and bought a pair of sandals, a waterproof case for my S7 phone for $30 (€26.19) and was enticed by this hi-tech scuba mask (above right) for our Greek trip.
I then made may way to the Rosen Apotheke and bought some dietary fiber since I had not brought enough to last the entire trip. I ordered some from Amazon and had it sent to my friend Giacomo in Bologna so he could bring it to Cortina when we meet soon. I then walked into St. Peter's church which had this unusual display of a spray of oragami white doves flying overhead. Quite impressive.
I went back to hotel and changed into my running gear and headed out toward the Hofgarten. I passed through Marienplatz (the center of Munich's Altstadt) and got these shots which beautifully show the Neues Stadthaus (New City Hall) (center steeple) and the Frauenkirche church (twin domes) in the background.
I took a different route this time and wound up in the Alter Hof and they were having some kind of event. The Alter Hof (Old Court) is the former imperial residence of Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor (1282–1347) and consists of five wings: Burgstock, Zwingerstock, Lorenzistock, Pfisterstock and Brunnenstock. Like most of the old town, it was rebuilt after being destroyed in WWII. No matter how times you visit a place, there is always something new.
At the other end of the Hof (outside the entrance) is a statue of the famous Kaiser (King) Ludwig (Louis IV mentioned above) which was done by Hans Wimmer (1907-1992) and erected in 1967.
I then passed the beautiful Opera House (OpernHaus, below left). What the "LIVE" sign is for I have no idea. Across from it, is the Spatenhaus (below right), one of our favorite restaurant since it was our first.
In front of the Opera House is a gigantic statue of King Maximillion I Joseph (1756-1825) erected in 1824. He was the King of Bavaria from 1806-25.
He is a friendly and benevolent looking gentleman. As I got closer, I arrived in Odeonsplatz and passing by the big Theatinerkirche St. Kajetan church built from 1668-1768 by Italian architects. It was the symbol of the city for many years.
Though yellow outside, it is very white inside (below left) with a beautiful ceiling and dome (right).
I arrived at 2:00 PM at one of my favorite haunts, Tambosi's (below left), where I usually leave my computer bag while I do my run and have a beer there afterwards. Wow, what a surprise - it's Gone! Out of business. I sadly peeked in and took some photos of the reconstruction going on inside (center, right). I will certainly miss this place. I wonder what it will turn into.
I then crossed Odeonsplatz and left my bag with one of the girls at the San Francisco Coffee Co. (SFCC) [Theatinerstraße 23, +49-92-429-1576] and by 3:00 PM, I was doing my usual run in the Hofgarten, part of which is through this arcade (below). Midway down the arcade section, I took a shot in both directions (below).
[I just learned that SFCC is now under new management as of 2018.]
This arcade is great if the sun is rather hot. Below is the main part of the park (Hofgarten) I run through.
I ran past this display of Munich souvenir glasses in a window. I was done at 3:30 PM and went back to SFCC to retrieve my bag and get a cappuccino which cost me €4.70 ($5.39). I stayed there working on my computer until about 6:30 PM.
At 6:30 PM, I walked back to my room taking the usual route (below).
I again got this shot of the "EYE Catcher" sign on the way as well as some enticing pastries in the window.
I got back to the room, changed, and then we headed straight for my favorite place where I usually get some Schweinhaxen (pig's knuckle). At 9:00 PM we sat down for dinner at Der Pschorr [Viktualienmarkt 15, +49-894-423-8390] located in the Viktualienmarkt. I had two Hacker-Pschorr beers along with my favorite Nuremburger bratwurst with potato salad (below left) and then, instead of Schweinhaxen, I had a half roast duck (below right). Both were fantastic.
Included with the duck was beautifully done red cabbage with apples. The beer is great.
Marcia had some Grüner Veltliner white wine from lower Austria and this beautiful veal goulash which she likes along with a cucumber salad. The whole dinner came to €99.60 ($114) and our waiter, Patrick was great.
My duck came with some more of that fantastic German potato salad which I love. The Germans really know how to handle potatoes no matter how they are cooked.
While we were finishing dinner, we met Alex and Wilko (of a company called Kanax) and we decided to all head to a place called Kennedy's so we had to head for Sendlinger Tor (gate, below). Its located on the other side of the gate.
Once you pass through the gate, this is what Sendlinger Strasse looks like from the other side (below left). There is Kennedy's very large biergarten to the left of the bar (below right).
Below is the building Kennedy's Bar [Sendlinger-Tor-Platz 11, +49-895-998-8460] is in. They really check you before they let you in and you have to wait in line especially at this time of night.
We got inside at 10:30 PM and Alex and Wilco (below left) treated us to an Augustiner beer and white wine.
The place (below) was really hopping and very loud, so they recommended we head next door to the Wirtshaus.
It was much quieter here. We went in with them and I had another Augustiner beer and Marcia a Grüner Veltliner wine which came to €18.20 ($20.85).
The bartender (below right) was a Bulgarian so we again had an interesting discussion about his country.
We finally gave up at 2:00 AM, bid them good-bye and walked back to the hotel. They were really great guys and we had a good time. We got to bed at 3:00 AM. What a fun day for our first day in Munich.
Tuesday, July 11, 2017
I did not wake up until 7:15 PM: which means I SLEPT FOR A SOLID 17 HOURS STRAIGHT - incredible!
Since it was so late, I immediately got up and into my running gear and at 8:20 PM ran by Kaufinger Tor (below left), a new shopping passageway they added to get to Kaufinger Strasse, and then up Sendlinger (below right) and to Kennedy's Bar and back.
As I came back down Sendlinger, I passed the Altes Häckerbräuhaus [Sendlinger 14, +49-89-260-5026] which we have never been in. It's a wine house, so Marcia would like it. Maybe next time we are here.
I also went by the Asamkirche St. Johann Nepomuk church (1733-46) which seems to be under some reconstruction outside. I have reported on this church in the previous trips. Stock interior photo below right.
When I reached the area of Sendlinger and Schmidstrasse I was done running so, at 9:05 PM, I went into the Starbucks and had a cappuccino for €4.5 ($5.15). I went to their upper area to sit and relax a little (below right).
Since it was really getting late, I raced back to the room to change and then we headed out for dinner. At 10:00 PM we entered the Spatenhaus [Residenzstraße 12, +49-89-290-7060] (below) across from the Opera House.
We got our usual seat on the half-circle (below) and relaxed below all the antlers.
We looked over the menu (below) and I ordered a Spaten beer and Marcia had a Grüner Veltliner wine as usual.
Marcia ordered her usual Wienerschnitzle (below left) and I got my Schweinhaxen (below right), but I forgot to tell them I didn't want the Knodels (potato dumplings). They are gooey and sticky and the only German potato preparation I really don't like.
Marcia's came with róti (sort of like hash browns) (left) and cucumber salad (center). I got a cabbage slaw.
When we were done, we shared an order of apfelstrudel with ice cream. It was really good.
If you have never had Schweinhaxen, this is what the plate looks like when I am finished with it.
The whole dinner (including two beers and three wines) came to €80 ($91.64).
Above is the building across the street which houses a very famous restaurant. We leisurely strolled back to our room and got to bed at 2:50 AM.
Wednesday, July 12, 2017
I woke at 5:15 AM, slept another two hours and finally awoke again at 8 AM. I took a photo of the the cards of the two places we went to our first night: Der Pschorr and Kennedy's Bar. Eager to see the new breakfast facility they have now (below right), by 8:30 AM I went down to where the old private steak house had been. They now have an automatic cappuccino machine so I made one for myself and found a seat by the window and went on my computer and did emails.
Here is the layout they have for your free breakfast. There are sliced meats and cheeses (left) and yogurts and condiments (right).
Below left are scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, tiny hot dogs and hard boiled eggs. On the right is a large selection of cheeses.
What was interesting to me was this honeycomb to take a "bite" out of along with a selection of fruit jams.
They have a variety of cereals (left), fresh breads and, of course, salted pretzels (right). I took one.
Lastly there are huge piles of muffins, buns and croissants. You can really have a feast here. I had nothing.
I had three more cappuccinos while working on the computer and at 11:30 AM I headed up to the room to change. On my way out, I got to say hello to my old friend, Dirk Kupfer, who is now the full manager of the hotel (his office to the right). If you ever stop there, say Hello.
As I headed to the Viktualienmarkt, I came across these bronze plaques on an ivied brick wall where the local newspaper building used to be. This one says "The free word but survived in the "Suddeutsche Zeitung" [local German newspaper) bound by no censorship, by no gagged conscience. 6 October 1945. For freedom, truth and right."
This one (below left) is for Dr. Fritz Gerlich (1883-1934) (right) who was a German journalist and historian, and one of the main journalistic resistors of Adolf Hitler. He was arrested and later killed at the Dachau concentration camp. The plaque says "Editor-in-chief of the "Münchner Neueste Nachrichten" [Munich Latest News] 1920-1928 [(the predecessor of today's "Suddeutsche Zeitung)]. He wrote in 1932, "National Socialism means hateful brotherly murder and boundless hardship."
Gerlich once wrote, "National Socialism means: Enmity with neighboring nations, tyranny internally, civil war, world war, lies, hatred, fratricide and boundless want." Boy, he sure got that all right.
Below right says, "On the 9th and 13th of March 1933 [in the "Straight Path" ("Der Gerade Weg") the Münchener Post. Münchener Nemeste news. Destroy disempowered expropriated."
I reached my destination and entered the Starbucks (below) at the edge of the Viktulienmarkt and had yet another cappuccino at 12:50PM for €4.5 ($5.15). I worked on new photos, the continuous overload of email, downloaded Rush and scanned all Marcia's receipts from the trip so far to email home. I was getting tired, so at 4:25 PM, I headed back to my room.
At 5:45 I laid down on the bed and crashed asleep until I awoke at 7:00 PM. I got up and went back out at 7:15 PM and talked some more with the guy at Sub Sea selling the snorkel system. The night before last I had been very excited to see that there was a brand new Eataly next door to Der Pschorr (below) but it was closed.
Now I wanted to see what this Eataly looked like. I had been in the one in Chicago, but never the original in New York City or the new one opening in Century City in Los Angeles. They have taken over the whole building (below).
It goes all the way up to the parking structure at the end. I went in the main entrance (below).
Below is their directory sign outside showing all the areas they have with Italian products and restaurants.
As you can imagine from the outside, this place is huge. Here are the cafes (left) and a wine server (right).
Here are more cooking areas and a pizza spot.
Here is La Trattoria (left) and La Piazza (right).
I left there at 7:55 PM and started my run from Sendlinger to Spöckmeier and went through Karls Gate (Karlstor or Stachus) (below) with it fountains flowing. This is probably my best PhotoStitch photo of it.
The fountains are in Kalsplatz. I went back through the gate down Neuhauser Straße (the shopping pedestrian street) on my way back and got this shot of the St. Michael's Jesuit church (below left). The church was built by William V, Duke of Bavaria between 1583–97 and its vault is the largest in the world apart from that of St Peter's Basilica in Rome. I thought it was interesting to note the changing demography of Munich and Germany (below right).
I then went by the Andechser am Dom, which is a branch of the Andechs Abbey (below left) and brewery we visited in 2007.
At 8:25 PM I arrived at zum Spöckmeier [Rosenstraße 9, +49-8-926-8088] (below, stock photo) and relaxed with a Hacker-Pschorr beer for €5.2 ($5.96). All these Bavarian beers are my favorites.
The hotel is nearby, so I went back and changed and we headed for dinner, and of course we had to try it out and go back to Eataly [Blumenstraße 4, +49-8-924-881-7711]. We decided to go for their seated restaurant, so at 9:40 PM, we got a table and looked over there posted menu cards of wine, drinks, pizza and entrees.
The menus were on these raised boards. The place was pretty busy. Interesting the difference in the photos below between with (left) and without the flash (right). I never can tell which is the better photograph. You decide. I ordered yet another Hacker-Pschorr beer and Marcia had a white wine.
Of course we had to try their pizza marguerita; so we split one. It was pretty good.
Then we ordered a plate of tagliatelle with cinghiale (wild boar) ragu (sauce) and we split that also.
It was also good. The entire meal cost us €35.60 ($42.90). Our waiter Paul was from Romania and he treated us very well. We left there at 11:00 PM and before getting back to our room we stopped at Paisano (below) at 11:10 PM for an Augustiner beer and white wine for €21.80 ($26.20) and I got to catch up again with Walter, the manager.
We went across the street to our hotel and got to bed at 1:15 AM.
Thursday, July 13, 2017
Today I woke at 7:30 AM and got up at 8:10 AM since we have to drive to Vienna today. I dressed and went to the breakfast room and got a free cappuccino and then made myself a nice big ham and cheese sandwich to take with me on the drive. I took it up to the room and put it in our refrigerator. By 9:05 AM, I was on my run down Sendlinger again and ended at Blumenstrasse and to the Viktulienmarkt as I usually do on my last day in Munich. I went by one coffee stand called Kaffeerösterei (below) but they have no place to sit so I moved on.
I went and got a shot of the Derag Livinghotel we stayed at last time and the big pole in the center of the Market. There was a stall there called Mercado Latino selling a variety of wines from South America which I thought was unusual.
Then I arrived at 9:40 AM at Nymphenburg Sekt [Viktualienmarkt 2, +49-892-323-9660] where I always go.
I ordered my usual cappuccino for €3 ($3.61) and relaxed a little.
I left there and started viewing all the things available in the Market. One stand was selling beautiful meats.
They also had bratwursts and salads.
The meats looked pretty tempting.
Other stands were selling a variety of huge vegetables like these large cucumbers (left) and huge radishes and dicons (right).
The fresh fish stalls were loaded with many varieties on ice.
There was a lot to choose from.
They also had smoked varieties.
I left the market and on my way back I stopped into a store that sells Bavarian stuff (lederhosen) called Wiesn-Tracht und Mehr [Tal 19, +49-72-297-2808] (below left) at 10:15 AM and bought a Bavarian flag umbrella (below) for €15 ($). Before reaching the hotel, at 10:45 AM, I finally decided to buy that fancy snorkel with goggles and a special drying towel at the Sub Sea store for a total of €154.80 ($186.50). I sure hope it works in Greece like he said it does.
[I just learned that Wies'n-Tracht is now closed as of Dec 2018. It wound up I never needed the umbrella and because of its length, I had to give it away before I flew home three months later. Wise purchase.]
I got back to the hotel and packed and at 12:00 PM, I checked out of the hotel for €422.64 ($509.20). I then finished packing by 12:50 PM. I went and got the car out of the garage and pulled it up on the sidewalk in front to make it easier to load. Marcia needed lunch so she went to Paisano next door and had an beautiful order of vitello tonnato (below right) for €12.3 ($14.82) and was done by 1:15 PM.
We finally left Munich at 1:25 PM and Marcia drove the first 125 miles (200 Km) on the A1 Autobahn to Vienna which took 2.5 hours. Along the way I ate that ham and cheese sandwich I had made this morning. At 3:50 PM, we were now in Austria and made a pitstop at ASFiNAG in Hainbach Süd (South) [4861 Schörfling am Attersee, +43-8-004-001-2400]. They have many rest stops throughout Austria.
At 4:00 PM, I drove the remaining 149 miles (239 Km) to Vienna which took me 2.5 hours. The whole trip was 274 miles (490 Km) and took us five hours. At 6:30 the GPS took us directly to our hotel, the Mercure Wien Zentrum [Fleischmarkt 1a, +43-153-4600] which I had booked with Booking.com for $1,063 (€882) for seven nights. This is the same hotel we have stayed at on two previous occasions. Stock photos below.
This time, unfortunately, my friend at the desk who found a neat place nearby for us to park the car for free is no longer working there. So now, after unloading the bags, we had to park the car at one of the city lots they recommended. We found BOE Parking [Moranzplatz 1] at 6:45 PM. This parking was a mess. Most of the directions I could not interpret, so I put my credit card in and it wound up charging me the outrageous amount of €298 ($360). I tried to find a way to contact them to get this straightened out but was unable since there was no one on duty and they didn't answer the phone they had there - a real nightmare.
We walked back to the hotel, got our room and unpacked since we will be here for a full week. I complained to the girl at the desk about the parking they recommended and she promised she would look into it. Then, at 7:30 we wandered around the neighborhood and finally settled in a place called Castelletto [Rotenturmstraße 24, +43-1-535-4483] (stock photos below). I had a cappuccino and Marcia got a decaf latte followed by a bowl of ice cream (above right) which came to €10 ($12). We left there at 8:45 PM.
We pretty much knew where we wanted to have dinner so we headed down the same street our hotel is on and arrived at Griechenbeisl [Fleischmarkt 11, +43-1-533-1997] at 8:50 PM. They gave us a nice table in the courtyard on this balmy evening and I ordered a Gösser beer and Marcia again had a Grüner Veltliner wine while we looked over the menu.
They supply the napkins and utensils in these little wooden boxes (above center). We each couldn't resist getting a bowl of goulash soup (below right) which was very good.
Marcia ordered the salmon with beet risotto and French fries. I either didn't have anything more or I completely forgot what it was and didn't take a photo. The whole meal came to €61.5 ($74.10) and we left at 11:00 PM.
On our way back I really wanted to have a glass of my favorite beer that I can only get in Austria and I knew where I had found it last time. So we found Bane's Bar [Köllnerhofgasser 3, +43-664-134-1123] (stock below).
We ordered glasses of Zipfer and Grüner Veltliner for €9.3 ($11.20). The Zipfer was the worst I have ever had and I couldn't finish it. There pipes must be dirty. That's the last time I go in there. We headed back to the hotel and got to bed at 2:15 AM.
Tomorrow I start my one week mad dash through everything worthwhile seeing in Vienna. Having been here several times over the past twenty years we were never able to visit Vienna as a tourist would. Now I will.
KJH Go To -> NEXT DIARIO #3
Kenneth J. Hoffer, MD
Vienna (Wien), Austria (Österreich)
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