There was some time left, after running the PB-Marathon before we had to return to Basel. So we had a look at our dream cars and bikes at the BMW World. My Mom actually owned one of these little blue ones, called the BMW Isetta. Lingga looks great in the Z4, how about her on the bike? Of course, I had to dream for a few seconds riding a bike again. Exploring the world…
With EasyJet, it’s so easy to reach many destinations in Europe. This time, we headed for one week (15-22 September) to Sicily. Traveling in Sicily with bus (Etnatrasporti) was very convenient and we also ventured with the train. The route goes along the coast, from Palermo to Messina to Taormina – wonderful sea view. While overnighting in Siracusa, we had an excursion to Noto; a neat Baroque town. This is a place to be during Semana Santa as they decorate a street with paintings made of flowers. We loved Palermo! We would recommend the B&B Gran Maestro to stay and eating at Ferro di Cavallo is a must. The pasta and seafood were incredible. It is a place where the locals eat… hard to believe, a great plate of pasta for 5 euro and 6 tiger prawn for 8 euro? Yes… this is the true local eatery (don’t forget to reserve your table as the line can get very long, even on weekdays).
As a break from enjoying the sea, the statue, and the history, we got fascinated watching couples got married! We acted as if we were invited and took pictures of them as they walked in front of the church. In Messina, Lingga got mesmerized by the train crossing to the mainland Italy in a ferry. We watched the operation until the police told us to leave 🙂 Taormina, while very touristy, has a great view and very charming. We wanted to do Godfather tour in the classic Fiat 500. But time was limited and we decided to go 3350 m (10’991 ft) Etna instead – the highest active volcano in Europe. After Etna, we jumped back on the bus and went to Catania. The Duomo area is a place to hang out and near the park, there are local seafood restaurants. A week flew by too quickly ……
The above Panorama shot I took from the Ruin Clanx (map on the left), nord of the town Appenzell.
Music by the famous yodel club “Alpeblueme Herisau with the song Zäuerli”
The weather was very nice and VERY hot… on Friday we hike from the town of Appenzell to Stein where the “Appenzeller Show Cheese Dairy” is located, the place where thye make the famous Appenzeller cheese.
On Saturday there was the Alphorn festival at lake Seealpsee, very interesting indeed.
Early on Sunday, yes really early at 6:00 o’clock we went with the cable car to the top of Säntis mountain (2502m / 8208f). Watching the beautiful sunrise.
After meditating (can you find Lingga on the Photo on the left?) and a hearty breakfast we enjoyed the scenery….
Once back down we attended a mountain service, held by the famous pastor Beat Antenen. The ceremony was accompanied by a yodeling group and by a group of alpenhorns, very different.
Lingga and Markus had a good time learning how to snowboard… the born champions 😉
After Zermatt, we went to Saas-Almagell, a little town close to Saas-Fee but without all the stress (shopping, tons of tourists). Markus did continue his snowboard lesson, while we went for a hike. We stayed at the Hotel Christiania, this little Hotel was full of surprises. As we checked in, the lady was wondering why we didn’t book HP like everyone else. Well, we never do and asked why we should do it here? The explanation was very convincing, you get at least a 4-course menu for as little as 20,- SFr. this didn’t leave us with much of a choice and we booked the additional dinner. We never regret it, the food was just fabulous, the setting very elegant and the service just like home. The second surprise was the 14 days ago opened Spa area, with whirlpool, sauna, steam sauna, some exercise equipment (after skiing the whole day?). Overall a place we would recommend without any hesitation. After a much to short time, we had to return to Basel, we will be back for sure…