Eagle's Nest from Berchtesgaden
I know this is daft having a different entry for each town we stopped in, but each were so different!
Berchtesgaden sits in the shadow of Obersalzberg, and we got more really good views of Eagle's Nest from the town centre. It was a bit of an odd stop, as this was very much just a normal town, with everyone going about their business, but I suppose it's nice to see that kind of side of a place. We had a brief walking tour with our guide, who seemed to be on commission at a cafe he steered us all into! Mum and I didn't fancy it so we went elsewhere and I had my second piece of Apple Strudel (yum!) and Mum had a croissant.
Check my sexy duds!! My miner's outfit!
We mooched about the shops (which were just normal town shops, not touristy), didn't buy anything (although I was eyeing up a new pair of skis!!!) and headed back to the bus for the Salt Mines. This was destined to be a unique experience!
The Saltmines were about 20 minutes drive outside Berchtesgaden, although technically still part of the town. We had to dress up in all in one boiler suits, as the mines are very dusty. We were taken down into the earth on a little pit train, complete with driver in traditional dress! Our first stop was at the first of two mine slides, but wooden chutes...we had to straddle a central raised bit, stick our feet out and hope for the best! Down at the bottom, our guide led us through caverns and grottos where it was explained how salt was mined from the hillside, although we had to hear the commentary in German then English, so it did drag on a bit! After a second pit slide, we boarded a small boat and were taken across the salt lake where we were encouraged to stick our hands into the water to see just how salty it was!!! I have to say I didn't indulge...I don't know where everyone else's hands have been! After more demonstrations and exhibitions, a few of us were pretty tired and more than just me were slumping down on the back wall of each cave to listen (or snooze!) during the audio commentary. We were taken back out the mines on the original mining train and everyone got a little pot of mined salt as a souvenir.
The trip back was pretty long, and I'll be honest, I fell asleep! It was a great day, very interesting, but I was shattered!