Tuesday, December 28, 2010

12th Dec 2010 @ Munich

From 30 C to 0 C

We departed Singapore at 1.20 am Sunday morning, thanks to the many considerate people who boarded the plane ahead of time. It was a tiring flight, mainly because H did not travel well on planes, especially the second half of the flight. All plans to watch the 1200 movies was shelved.
Mr G, our mascot, on his  first overseas trip. Beyond, the suburbs of Munich, as seen from train S8

We touched down at Dubai at 4.45 am. The airport was bustling with activites. As we wait out the transit for the next 4 hours, the crowd at the airport grew and facilities like food kiosks and toilets burst at the seam. At long last, we were back to the plane for the second leg of the journey to German. The plane waited at the runway for a good hour before taking off but we touched down at Josef Franz Strauss Airport ,Munchen, just 20 minutes behind schedule at 1.10pm.
Conrad hotel de ville in Munich can also be viewed by Streetview.

Following the S sign, we took the elevator down to the S bahn tracks, we purchased partner day ticket for greater Munich at 19.60 euros, good for bus/train/rail travel in greater and central Munich. The S1 train took a long loop round Munich before dropping us at Munich HBF. I had earlier done research with the help of google map/earth and street view so getting to the hotel was a breeze. From the train station, we exit Schillerstrasse and walked just about 5 minutes to Conrad hotel, no crossing of roads needed. This is supposed to be a sleazy neighborhood but we felt safe. No hanky panky outside the casinos in freezing winter was seen. In fact, it felt like the area around Taipei train station, not top notch district but functional. Streets are clean and devoid of graffiti, a good sign. I was a little disappointed at the lack of sign of snow anywhere.
A triple room at Conrad for 160 euros

The friendly and efficient staff at Conrad got us settled at room 309, overlooking the inner courtyard, away from the ugliness of the streets and neon lights shouting 'cainos'. Room was made ready for us, heated and turned down. Completely bushed, we dragged ourselves for a much delayed lunch at the station and staggered to the Christmas market at Marienplatz, 2 train stops down. Lunch was Schnitzel and lots of sausages.
The snow caught everyone  by surprise. We were so thrilled!

Evening at Marienplatz offered us a surprise. It started snowing and the area at Neues Rathaus went into a little frenzy as people seek shelter at the few sheltered areas around the shops. Pat and H had a hard time taking photos while I became alarmed at the sudden change in weather. Pat's meager insulation by way of his expensive ski jacket was beginning to show.
Munich gets dark after 4 pm in winter.Behind is the Rathaus or Town Hall.

Not yet 6pm, we walked around the Marienplatz area looking for my dinner target of Day 1 : Hof Brauhaus. Along the way, we saw the Staatsoper, our destination on day 3.
Springy potato dumpling - here's 2 meals on a plate!

Finally, after a long cold walk, we located Hof accidentally. Pat had pork knuckle, 0.5 liter of beer, H had goulash and hot tea and I four humongous potato/ mixed dumplings which was a  HUGE mistake. Lesson : never order potato dumpling if you also hate bachang kosong. This is the plain round version with super salty sauce. For 36 e, we were pickled by the high salt meal. Stuffed, we took the S bahn back to Munich HBF and back to Conrad, to nurse my surging blood pressure.

Our great Europe winter holiday has started and I can't wait to see  my plans coming to fruition!
Music is a fitting end to a tiring day. How the cellist played with gloves beats me!

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