After a complete washout yesterday, we kept our fingers crossed that the forecasted sun made an appearance in the city of Innsbruck. And an appearance it most definitely made!
With a train booked in the evening, we wanted to make the most of the day. Bags left at reception and all checked out by 10am, we were on our way, grabbing a cheeky croissant before going exploring. As we made the short 10 minute walk into the city centre, we were finally able to see the true beauty of the city and surrounding areas. Innsbruck was a last minute addition to our trip, and was the place I was most excited to visit.
I’d never seen a real life mountain before, and with the sun shining down on us, all I could see was mountains. You couldn’t have taken the smile off my face…I loved the views! Stunning buildings with a backdrop of the Alps, how could it be beaten? As we wandered down the street towards the Golden Roof, I spotted a sign advertising a panoramic viewing platform. Seeing as it’s something we’ve done in every city we’ve ever visited, we couldn’t miss the opportunity to do it here too. Especially with the amazing views we were going to be able to see!
I’ve been a bit spoilt of late, as most of the viewing platforms we’ve visited have had a lift in. This was a back to basics stairs option, but thankfully it wasn’t too high! As I ducked and jumped through the tiny door to get outside, the smile on my face got even bigger. Mountains. EVERYWHERE! The platform isn’t huge, and wraps around the tower we’d just climbed. As it wasn’t really big enough for people to properly pass each other, we ended up walking around it a few times. Not that I was complaining, the views were absolutely stunning, and I was so glad that I’d lugged my nice camera on our travels and not settled for the more convenient smaller model.
After taking one or two (or fifty…) photos, we continued exploring, passing the Golden Roof and wandering alongside the river. Spotting another sign, this time for Nordkette, I wanted to see what it was. Yet again, we lucked out as we’d actually found the funicular train up the mountain. I’d read about the train, but wasn’t sure where we’d find it or whether we’d even have enough time to head up the mountain. Turns out it’s just 8 minutes to the first town in the mountain, and we couldn’t turn down an opportunity to actually go up the Alps!
More amazing views later, we stopped in at a small church in Hungerburg, which is the first town on the way up. It was freezing cold, and really eery as I felt like we were being watched the whole time, even though there was noone else in there. After a quick look around, we lit a candle and stepped back outside, where we instantly felt warmer. As we looked around the small town, we spotted signs to the zoo. We’d passed the train stop on the way up, so thought it’d be a good idea to walk the 20-minute trail to the zoo and then take the train the rest of the way down.
Now to say it’s steep would be a complete understatement. All I could think was if we had to turn around and go back the way we’d come, I’d be done for. It actually took us nearer to an hour to walk to the zoo, mostly because we had to walk so slowly to not slip and also because I took so many photos on the way down. The views were absolutely amazing!
When we actually reached the zoo, it felt strange to be walking on a level terrain. After a few more photos (my boyfriend has such patience!), the train took us back down to Innsbruck centre, where we had a bite to eat for lunch and then wandered around to see what was going on, before stopping in at the cathedral for a quick peek.
The train to our next stop, Munich, was booked for the evening, so we had just enough time to pick up some postcards and a magnet, chill out with a coffee and pick up our bags before heading to the train station. I was actually sad to leave Innsbruck – not because we’d missed out on loads of ‘sights’, but because I love seeing the mountains! Thankfully, the ride to Munich was fairly quick, and our hotel was over the road from the train station, so we didn’t have loads of travel left to do on our last intercity transfer. Just time enough to hunt for dinner before turning in for the night, after my favourite day of the trip so far!