The first afternoon - and the first bottles of wine...

Eltville Travel Blog

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The journey to Eltville only took around half an hour on the motorway and so we weaved through the lanes of traffic courtesy of our taxi driver.


Eltville itself is what can probably be described as a sleepy town, much of which is virtually untouched by the hands of time for many a long year.  The outskirts are more modern as it has obviously spread over time but the closer to the river you get the older the buildings seem to become.  Eltville lacks the metropolitan modernity of Frankfurt and the tourist bustle of nearby Rudesheim but none the less is a picturesque setting as you could want.


We arrived at our hotel, Weingut Koegler, in plenty of time only to find the place largely deserted.  Arriving at what we thought to be the reception it was all locked up with no one seeming to be anywhere to be found.  After some searching it transpired we had to check in at the hotels wine shop which hadn’t initially been very obvious.


After a short time to unpack we were off for our first taste of exploring the town.  After picking up Martin and Sheila who were staying at the nearby Hotel Frankenbach we began to wander towards the castle and the river.


This part of the town has an almost medieval feel to it as cobbled streets wind between traditional wood beamed buildings and the occasional bar and restaurant  which look like they’d been stood there for hundreds of years.


The castle is generally in good repair with a spacious courtyard surrounded by various different levels of well tended sunken gardens bursting with roses which seemed to be the local speciality.  Whilst we were there they were staging some sort of festival so had a large outdoor stage and banks of seating erected in the castle courtyard which made it feel slightly more enclosed than it actually is.


After wandering our way down to the riverside we decided to try out the Weinprobierstand which nestles not too far from the castle gates under a bank of trees.  With a suitably refreshing bottle of Riesling purchased we sat in the shade and watched life pass by on the river and on its bankside.


Father and Martin were somewhat excited to see Kites (as in the bird variety • not things on string) fishing in the river but this left everyone else less than interested.  As the wine flowed so the discussion circulated around the size of the boat that had been hired and much debate was had about each passing craft as to whether it was bigger or smaller than that!!


Three bottles of wine later we realised we were supposed to be meeting the bride and groom who were arriving to drop some stuff off in the hotel so we reluctantly gave up our bankside seats and set off back up the hill.


Ninety minutes later and we were cracking open our next bottle of wine having met up with Lloyd, Rebecca and the couple that had driven them out to Eltville Jurgen and Patricia.


During this period Pat had managed to lose her passport for the second time in two days and ended up searching someone else’s room for it!!


On the way back to the river we also picked up Lloyd’s uncle Barclay who had arrived early and with no further ado set off for dinner at the riverside restaurant at the base of the castle walls.


A warm summer’s evening meant we could happily sit on the river terrace and continue our boat spotting endeavours whilst enjoying an excellent meal (and more wine) as the evening drew in...

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photo by: dougal