TRAVEL BOOK REVIEW: Pöstlingberg, Linz Austria (Lonely Planet Guide Book)

19139471A few years ago I received the Lonely Planet guide for Austria as a birthday present. Now that I have lived here for 2+ years, I decided to do a review of the suggestions in the book.

Today’s subject is Pöstlingberg. The book recommends Pöstlingberg as a “lookout” spot. “Linz spreads out beneath you atop Pöstlingberg (537m), which affords bird’s-eye views over the city and the snaking Danube.”

Tripadvisor also recommends taking the Pöstlingbergbahn (tram) to the top of the mountain. The Lonely Planet guide states that “This gondola features in the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s steepest mountain railway – quite some feat for such a low-lying city!”

However, I also wanted to get in some exercise, so instead of taking the tram, I decided to walk up the Kreuzweg, or “cross way” in English. “Cross” meaning in the religious sense. The bottom of the Kreuzweg starts out in Linz, and the top ends in Pöstlingberg, near to the Pöstlingberg Kirche (Church).

Total walking time: 1 to 2 hours depending on how many times you want to stop to take photos or to enjoy the view.

Experience Level Required: None. I would classify the hike as “easy”.

Price: Free to walk. I think that the tram costs a few euros.

General Satisfaction: High.

20190209_1430131293841545

Along the way (about every 100 meters), there is a religious monument which depicts the story of Jesus Christ on the Cross. The battery on my phone was getting low, so I only ended up taking photos of the first few monuments.

20190209_1429172051326479

What I really liked about this walk was the scenery. At various points along the way you can see the entire city of Linz and the Donau river. The snow gave it an extra special atmosphere, especially when the sun came out. Unfortunately, my battery had already died by then, so all my photos are when the sun was hiding behind the clouds. I also was unable to take photos of inside the Church, but if you are interested, you can find some photos of the Church on Tripadvisor here.

20190209_150223198335823

Across from the Church, at the top of the hill was the lookout point mentioned in the Lonely Planet Guide. The sight of the mountains in the distance was a nice touch.

20190209_1502111039020414

Additionally, if the walk up the Kreuzweg gives you an appetite, you can also stop to see the Pöstlingbergschloss (Castle). There is a restaurant there, but I have never been inside, so I cannot give any recommendations. My boyfriend tells me that it is a little expensive, and the food is good, but “nothing special”.

20190209_1458341260190693.jpg

 

 

Pictures of Linz on a Snowy Day

I found a little trail by the Schlossmuseum which led me to the below view of the Donau river.

20181202_1853021608986152.jpg

On this little trail, there was also a statue of Johannes Kepler.  He was a 17th century German mathematician, astronomer, and astrologer. There is a university in Linz named after him.

20181202_1855351087983782.jpg

What I really like about Linz, is finding unique art on the side of buildings.

 

Linz may be an industrial city, but sometimes it can be rather beautiful.

Things to do in Vienna: Your ultimate city guide

These guys are one of my favorite travel bloggers.  I was thinking about posting my own blog post about Vienna, but once I saw theirs I knew that I would never be able to write one that was as good.  My only suggestion which would differ from the blog post would be to take the OBB train instead of the CAT train.  The OBB train ticket would be for under €5, while the CAT is €15.

we did it our way

Vienna.  The beautiful capital of Austria is said to be the “city of dreams”, for being the birthplace of Sigmund Freud.  To us, Vienna was the start of our epic train trip through Europe, and it couldn’t have been a better place to kick things off.

Without surprise, Vienna has often been voted the most livable city in the world, due to its high quality of life ratings, as well as culture, infrastructure, and many markets.  The city is often cited as a leading example of urban planning and we can totally see why.  It was such a lovely city to walk around!

Wediditourway St Stephen's Cathedral Vienna Asutria We are in awe of the St Stephen’s Cathedral

Although we managed to see everything in 2 days, we would suggest a full 4-day trip to Vienna.  Here are our recommendations for what to see, where to go, how to get around, and where to stay.

When…

View original post 2,731 more words

Christmas Markets in Linz

According to Wikipedia:

cris-dinoto-460411-unsplash

“A Christmas market, also known as Christkindlmarkt (literally: Baby Jesus Market), ChristkindlesmarktChristkindlmarketChristkindlimarkt, and Weihnachtsmarkt, is a street market associated with the celebration of Christmas during the four weeks of Advent. These markets originated in Germany, but are now being held in many other countries.[1] The history of Christmas markets goes back to the Late Middle Ages in the German-speaking part of Europe, and in many parts of the former Holy Roman Empire that includes many eastern regions of France.[1] The Christmas markets of Bautzen were first held in 1384.[2] Dresden‘s Striezelmarkt was first held in 1434. Frankfurt was first mentioned in 1393, Munich in 1310, and Augsburg in 1498. In Austria, Vienna’s “December market” can be considered a forerunner of Christmas markets and dates back to 1298.[3]

Continue reading “Christmas Markets in Linz”

Thanksgiving in Austria

One of the things that I miss about America, is celebrating Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is an American national holiday which occurs on the third Thursday of November.

According to the History website, “Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday in the United States, and Thanksgiving 2018 occurs on Thursday, November 22. In 1621, the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared an autumn harvest feast that is acknowledged today as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the colonies. For more than two centuries, days of thanksgiving were celebrated by individual colonies and states. It wasn’t until 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November.” To learn more about Thanksgiving, click on the attached link.

Last year I hosted a Thanksgiving at my apartment, but it was super complicated. This year I decided to host a dinner at Tamu Sana, an East African restaurant in Linz. If you go with four or more people, you can order the family style meal. You can tell them whether you want vegetarian or meat.

Continue reading “Thanksgiving in Austria”

Importing an American Cat to Austria

Two years ago I imported my cat from America.  Before I looked into it, I thought that I would have to quarantine her for 3 months.  Luckily this wasn’t the case.  Essentially, what I had to do in short (for the detailed version please see here at the Austrian Embassy’s website.

1. Get the cat microchipped.  A lot of vets have varying opinions on whether to inject a topical pain killer into the area for insertion of the microchip, since the width of the microchip needle is much thicker than normal needles.  The vet I went to in Texas told me that it was not necessary, and just prolonged the stress of the cat, so I went with his expert advice.  From the reaction of poor Katzie (eyes bugging out in surprise, and what I can only imagine was pain), I regret listening to the vet.  I should have gone with my gut and given her the painkiller.  After insertion of the microchip she was very scared (another indication that it hurt her).

In theory, the microchip is supposed to be scanned at the border control upon your first entry into the EU to verify it is the same animal as described in the paperwork, but in my case they didn’t do it.

2. Rabies shot after microchip insertion: The rabies shot had to be given after the microchip was implanted (even if only a few seconds).  I thought it was a dumb rule at the time, but what can you do?  The rabies shot has to be given more than 21 days before entry into the EU, otherwise it is not valid — unless you have proof that the animal has had routine rabies shots at regular intervals.

Continue reading “Importing an American Cat to Austria”

The Cat Alarm

In February, 2016, I was temporarily living in Texas for work.  I was having a particularly hard day.  My boyfriend was living in Austria at the time, and my jerk of an ex-husband had custody of our cats, who I had raised since kittens (its a long story). I was feeling very lonely.

I was coming back from a run, when I spotted a little black and white cat walking around and crying piteously. I walked up to her, she rolled on her back, and the rest, as they say, is history. I wasn’t ever lonely again after that.

Almost three years later, she is living with my boyfriend and I in Austria, and she is loving every moment of it.

The hungry cat alarm woke me up today at 5:30 a.m. (because, well, she knows I will always get up for her).  She is now fast asleep on “her” chair (I told my boyfriend he needs to find a new one), and I am blogging.  I guess waking up at 5:30 a.m. tired her out.

Happy Caturday!

The life of a pampered house cat

Kombucha Honey Mustard: Part 2

How to make delicious kombucha honey mustard:

  1. Brew kombucha like normal, and wait until it becomes vinegar.
  2. Place 1/2 cup of yellow mustard seeds in a jar, and cover them with the kombucha vinegar.  It is possible that the seeds will plump up slightly as they soak.  If the mustard seeds start popping over the top of the kombucha vinegar, cover them with more kombucha vinegar.
  3. Let the seeds soak for at least 3 days (I waited 6 days).
  4. After waiting the sufficient amount of time, pour the whole jar into the blender
  5. Add 1 1/4 teaspoons tumeric and 1/4 teaspoon salt.  I added 1/2 a clove of garlic, but at the end of the day I didn’t like the taste of it in the mustard, so I would say to not use it.
  6. Add 5 teaspoons of honey
  7. Blend.  If the consistency is too grainy, keep adding more kombucha vinegar until smooth.

20181026_1240381211778419.jpg

 

 

 

Kombucha Honey Mustard: Part 1

I remember the exact moment when I first tried kombucha. I was in the passenger seat of the car in the parking lot of a Whole Foods in Long Island New York.  My ex-husband had bought a rather expensive (something like $3) green carbonated drink, which he said was supposed to be really healthy.

I took a sip and was like, “uck, that’s disgusting!”

It was super sour and the base flavor was not that great. It would be my first taste of G.T.’s, one of the the biggest kombucha brewers in the US.

Since it was supposed to be good for me, when we went back to Whole Foods the next weekend, I tried it again, this time the Passionberry Bliss flavor.  My second try went much better, and I was soon hooked!

Since I was on a limited budget (damn law school loans), spending $3 a bottle a day on kombucha (x2 people), was just not in the budget.  I was seriously bummed out. However, after doing some research online, I was delighted to discover that I could brew ‘buch at home for a fraction of the price!

mustard seeds from Sonnentor soaking in kombucha vinegar

Since I have some extra kombucha vinegar laying around, I decided to get creative.  Eric and Jessica Childs (founders of Kombucha Brooklyn in New York City) in their book Kombucha! had a really interesting recipe for kombucha mustard.  I like mustard, so I decided to give it a shot.

Stay tuned for the results!

Hohentauern, Styria

A little more than an hour from Linz is a small village in Styria (Steirmark). During the winter time it is a great place for skiing, but during the rest of the year it is possible to hike up the skiing trails.

It is a wonderful little place for a day hiking trip. There are many trails to chose from for all levels of fitness.

It is also possible to stay for the weekend and there are several hotels in the area. I have personally not stayed in any of these hotels so I cannot make any recommendations.

If you are in the mood for a bite to eat at a cute Austrian restaurant, I would recommend the Passhöhe. Family owned and operated for more than 100 years, this place will not disappoint. However, there are not so many vegetarian or gluten free options as it is very traditional Austrian food.