Posted by: lindsaygoes | April 2, 2011

And the adventures begin again. First stop: Frankfurt

I always find it pretty much takes an entire day to get anywhere, even if the flight is only an hour! And that was the case, after not trusting London´s public transport I set off extra early (which meant I couldn´t check my bags in straight away after arriving at the airport), I then had a while waiting at the airport (can I just say, the pat downs have really increased in invasiveness!) and then various delays (some kind of waiting on the runway and then had to circle around for a while before they´d let us land) before I finally made it to Frankfurt. Once there, I did manage to navigate the public transport and find my hostel with only written instructions (the only bit of the trip I didn´t print out a map for – yes I am that organised/nerdy), which was smack bang in the red light district. They had warned me, although I expected it to be more subtle than it was. It´s even more obvious than the red light district in Amsterdam, and yes, I stayed in a hostel in the red light district there too. They´re probably cheaper or something.

Anyway, it was probably the fact that I did land in the middle of the sex shop area, but Frankfurt does seem to have a bit of a gritty atmosphere. It was still light for a while after arriving, and I headed off for a bit of a walk, and did manage to see quite a bit of the city in a short time. Even with my little compact camera I must have been exuding ´photographic enthusiast´ vibes (might have been because I was kneeling on some wet grass to get the right angle of a sculpture) because I´d only been walking around for about 10 minutes before I got asked to take someones photo. There is some great architecture here though, and when the sun comes out all the skyscrapers reflect the sky! So yeah, that was my first evening, wandering round taking photos – are you surprised? I also had some apple juice, instead of the famous Äppelwei (Apple wine). Close enough.

The next day, after a pretty bad nights sleep (please get your bags packed during the day if you´re staying in a hostel, no one wants to here zippers and crinkling plastic bags when they´re trying to sleep!), I went for a wander along the Main River (that´s its name) and got a bit of sunlight. I saw the Kaiserdom (cathedral, although technically not accurate as it was never the seat of a bishop, in case you were interested), the Nissa Garden (probably not at it´s most impressive as not much foliage this early in the year), Paulskirke (St Paul´s Church) and the Römerberg (reconstructions of the medieval town quarter), where I had to run through the obstacle course of school groups. After that though I went on a boat cruise along the Main River. It was the first cruise of the season, and there were a grand total of three of us on it to start, and we were all Australians. Although I was very surprised when the other two told me I was the first Australian they´d seen on their travels (but we´re everywhere!). It was very nice travelling along the river, with a bit of sunshine (although that did disappear and by the end of the cruise I was getting pretty cold) seeing all the sights from the water, although I wasn´t too impressed by the industrial sections out of the main city. So after the cruise one of my fingers was turning a bit blue (honestly, it wasn´t that cold, must just be bad circulation) so I used that as an excuse to get a hot chocolate (which is a better excuse that my normal ‘I want one’) and then made myself feel a bit ill with some fried chicken and chips from a market (just ate too much, nothing wrong with the food, apart from the obvious lack of any nutritional goodness and high levels of fat, and salt blah blah blah, yes mum). After that I walked round a bit more, going through the market, also saw the Alte Oper (Old Opera House) and then headed back to the hostel for a barbeque dinner.

So today has been about 25*C (well that’s what the weather forecast predicted, and it has been lovely and sunny and warm) and with the sunshine, various markets and buskers around the place, there really is a holiday atmosphere. First stop this morning was across the other side of the Main River to the Flea market on the Sachsenhäuser embankement. It was lovely, walking along the river browsing, or maybe more nosing at what was for sale. I didn’t actually buy anything, although they did have quite a lot of dental instruments. Then I headed in from the river into Altsachsenhausen, which is very quaint with cobbled streets and old buildings. After that I headed across the river again, and had fun taking photos of all the shiny skyscrapers in the sun as I walked to Palmengarten, which had a load of hot houses (and they were very warm today!) with some gorgeous plants, as well as an orchid sale, so you guess it, more photos were taken. I also basked in the sun for a bit and people watched before heading back to the hostel. I got lost on the way, but not too badly, or I wouldn’t be sending this email.

So tomorrow I’m meeting up with my mum, and we’re heading to Switzerland for a week!

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