All posts by betweenthetread

National Get Outside day

National get outside day – 29.9.19

wellies and waterproofs on the beach
Wellies and Waterproofs!

Tomorrow is national Get Outside day. The first one the UK has had and it is being organised by the Ordinance Survey. Their aim is to encourage over 1 million people to get outside and be active. We may be preaching to a largely already converted clan of campers and adventure enthusiasts here but there are still many of us who like to only participate in fair weather adventures.

The Ordinance Surveys get outside campaign is led by a picture of a child, in a yellow waterproof, asking “Will you go out with me?”. Not a tag line that I would have chosen perhaps… but its sentiment of asking someone to come and join you in your outdoor time is something that even us seasoned adventurers can get behind.

It doesn’t matter whether you are going camping for the weekend, taking a hike up Mount Snowdon or a gentle stroll at a local park. There may be someone you know that really wants to start being more outdoorsy – if that’s a word – but don’t know where to begin. By inviting someone to join you, you could be the catalyst in helping someone to get more active, to help boost their confidence and to start their outdoors journey.

Activities for everyone!

The Get Outside campaign aims to get people moving in many ways and events are being held across the country to encourage this. From organised walks, runs, water sports and bike rides, you can find an event near you or you can do something on your own. If you log on to their website you will be able to see all the information they have put up for you, from beginners guides, information on mini adventures to have in London, Dog friendly parks and 50 outdoor activities you could try.

“A good walk always ends at a pub” – My mother!

We have had so many great outdoor adventures, our most entertaining one was when we got lapped by two pugs when climbing the Sugar Loaf in the Brecon Beacons. Those little dogs managed to get up and half way back down when we were still huffing and puffing our way up! It really doesn’t matter what your fitness level is – its about taking those first steps. We have kayaked in Lake Bala, cycled in Pembrey, walked through fields of lavendar, and visited lots of castles across the UK with our Cadw passes.

Health Benefits

Being outside has so many health benefits. Did you know that sitting outdoors for 20 minutes in the sunshine can give you an energy boost equivalent to a cup of coffee? Being outside allows you to breath cleaner air, absorb vitamin D, lowers blood pressure, boosts mental health and releases endorphins making you feel energised, motivated and creating a healthier immune system.

In a shocking video on the GetOutdoors website, we meet Kayleigh, a young child. The video tells us that her generation could for the first time, have a lower life expectancy than the one before her. Citing blood pressure and diabetes as major concerns to her generation, the video also shows adults that wish they had more time, didn’t feel lonely or could quiet their mind.

If not for ourselves then for our next generations, we need to set the examples of leading a healthier and more active lifestyle.

Ways you can become more active

Outdoor photography.

If the thought of scheduled exercise brings you out in hives, why not find a local arboretum and take some time to just spot those colours changing as we come into Autumn. Take your camera and just play around with taking some pictures you will walk further that you think!

Volunteer as a dog walker or to walk for charity

Emma and Bertie, Border terrier

If walking on your own feels a little uncomfortable, why not walk a friends dog OR dog walk for charity? Volunteer at a local rescue centre and assist with exercising the dogs. They love the company and stroking pets also has added scientifically proved benefits for your health.

Join a charity walk such as Cancer Research or Alzheimer’s – Sometimes having a reason or a target to hit can be a real motivator, especially where money and keep up appearances is concerned. once you have booked your place and told everyone you are doing this event it is harder to let yourself back out of it!

Make small Changes to your daily routine

You don’t have to spend a fortune on running shoes and lycra. In your lunch break, go for a short walk. It is great to get out of a stuffy office and just take 20 minutes to change the air and your location. A short walk around the block at lunch or look at getting off of the bus a stop earlier to increase your daily exercise just a little will have benefits.

Investigate your garden

From building a fort, making a fairy house, planting and tending to vegetables or stargazing, your garden can allow you lots of outdoor time. It doesn’t have to be a large garden, or one with grass, a balcony will do. Stand outside barefoot – if safe to do so – and connect with the earth. Take your first drink outside and smell the morning air. Plan your day in a calm environment and take a moment to look at the beauty around you. You may not like spiders but you can still marvel at a dew covered web! Perhaps take your evening hot chocolate outside and try to learn the constellations of the stars.

Book yourself on an outdoor course

You don’t need to paint your face and book on to a bear grills survival course if you don’t want to. There are plenty of other outdoor courses you can go on. We booked ourselves onto a foraging course when we first started exploring and learnt so much from Kerry. You can read about all the amazing things we learnt here!

There are so many ways that you can start to spend more time outdoors. Ultimately it has to start with you. Whether you know someone who wants to start, or you know someone who is active and want to learn about what they do, ask them and invite them along.


As we mentioned above, we have had some amazing adventures outdoor this year and we are not the only ones. Some of our readers also sent in their pictures to show how much fun it can be and what they have been up to!

Our friends at 2born2travel have had some amazing adventures, from sleeping on an inflatable bed outside – with no tent, to this stunning picture, they are ones who walk where others dare to fly! If you haven’t checked them out yet, watch this video about when they slept on this and woke up in the middle of the lake!!!

2born2travel sleep on an inflatable bed on a lake!
2Born2Travel with their inflatable bed on a lake – Why not?

Natasha and Jon from Life Beyond Bricks, are currently travelling the in their camper and have witnessed a variety of weather! Check out these amazing pics from Snowdon and the Preseli Mountains!

Catherine on facebook got in touch to share this picture of her husband in Whitesands on the Pembrokshire coastal path.

Catherine's picture of Whitesands
Catherine from Facebook sent us this from Whitesands.

Mandy went to Stonehenge for the Autumn Equinox AND also was the captain of a narrow boat for the first time!

Fi had lots of fun this summer walking around waterfalls in Wales and flying Kites with her family

Thank you to everyone who sent us pictures of themselves today!




Send us your snaps on facebook or twitter @vanlifediary.

What do you win? Well, nothing of any value! We will announce on Sunday who the winner is from all the pictures we receive. This will be posted on our facebook account at 6pm! That’s it… no money.

Keep it clean but we need to see that you are outside on national #getoutside day – get your friends to join in to!

A broken van and trip to Whitby

Before we start on our adventure to Whitby, we need to discuss breakdowns! One of the few drawbacks of living on the road is what happens when your home breaks down. It was something that we had thought about and planned for extensively before travelling. We always keep some spare money in the bank for repairs and a hotel!

This was a wise choice and something everyone needs to remember. When your house is in the garage, some mechanics won’t let you stay on their premises). Luckily for us we happened to be staying with our daughter when we noticed we were dripping on her driveway. Possibly something we wouldn’t have noticed if we were moving around every day. We tried to have a look at where the issue was coming from but the leak seemed random at first.

We quickly realised (after taking her to a mechanic, letting her cool down for a few hours and her refusing to leak on command) that she only leaked from a very cold start. At first, we thought it was oil but it was actually diesel. We left her with Jason to investigate what was going on and find where the leak was coming from. Luckily for us we had somewhere we could base ourselves and we stayed with our daughter. Read on to find out if she makes it.

Get up and go!

A few days of being lazy and we soon wanted to get up and go. A quick call to a hire car company and we had ourselves a Toyota Yaris for a week. After being in Chewy for 6 months it felt very odd to be in a car again. It’s so low – but a lot easier to park! We couldn’t help but feel so sad to leave our home behind and felt like we were being unfaithful.

Whitby and the famous Whitby Abbey.

Whitby Abbey
Whitby Abbey

The drive to Whitby was easy and picturesque. We picked a lovely sunny day to travel but wished we had the van and could have stayed over nearby. We puled over when we saw the silhouette of the abbey and parked. Arriving at around 11am we found a parking spot on the road with a pay meter. Adding 6 hours on the clock we still didn’t have time to see everything! We puled over when we saw the silhouette of the abbey and parked. We took some photos and then started our walk down narrow roads and tiny passageways to the harbour and town. There is a large car park down by the estuary if you want to get closer.

Holiday cottages are available for rent here but parking could be tricky. There was a real bustle to the town even though it was mid-September and mid-week, indicating the popularity of Whitby. The first thing we noticed walking around was this mysterious black gemstone in all of the jewellery shops.

Whitby Jet

Whitby Jet
Whitby Jet

The jet-black stones adorning the necks of display mannequins and stands showcasing the beauty of this ‘Gem-stone’ intrigues you as you walk past them. They are possibly darker than obsidian and leave you gazing at this black hole in awe. The mystery deepens when you learn that it is a not a gemstone as you would think, its actually made from wood. Whitby Jet is a natural organic gemstone formed from the compressed wood of the prehistoric Monkey Puzzle or Araucaria tree.

Queen Victoria was to become Whitby Jet’s most prolific patron when her beloved Prince Albert died in 1861. Queen Victoria took to wearing Jet jewellery in remembrance of him. It soon became the etiquette to accessorise the period’s elegant mourning fashion with jewellery made from the Whitby Jet gemstone. So much so, that the only jewellery allowed to be worn in court during the period was Whitby Jet.

St Mary’s Church

We crossed over the river to visit St Mary’s Church. Founded as early as 1110AD with its interior now chiefly from the late 1800’s, this church is an important piece of Whitby’s history. There are weather beaten headstones in the cemetery clearly from the 1600’s. The church is perched upon the cliffs with 199 step, steep climb to reach it. It is now in serious jeopardy after two landslides (due to broken drainage and torrential rain) as recent as 2012, caused skeleton parts to drop to the streets below. The town councilor has stated the church is stable.

The origin of the steps is an interesting read, some research into this seems to point to St Hilde. She felt that it was a test of faith to climb the stairs. Possibly due to this is it widely believed that even in the 19th century, when the grounds were open for burials, people preferred to be carried up the stairs to their resting place rather than be taken in a horse drawn carriage. Along the sides of the stairs today are benches stationed to share a wonderful view of the town. This was not their initial use though. The pall-bearers had wooden platforms where seats are now, on which to rest the coffins whist they caught their breath.

Tombs from 1600

Plaque from Francis and Mary Huntrods
Francis and Mary Huntrods

Among the history surviving at the church are the remains of Francis and Mary Huntrods. Their bodies are entombed on the outer wall of the church. A plaque above them tells of their magnificent partnership. Born hours apart on the same day of the same year (19th September 1600), they married on the anniversary of their birthday and after having 12 children passed away within 5 hours of each other aged 80, also on their birthday of the same year.

Whitby Abbey

After wandering around the Church, we made our way to the iconic Whitby Abbey just behind. The silhouette of the abbey had been tempting us since our arrival and we were very keen to explore it. The Abbey is famous for many things, perhaps best known to be the inspiration behind Bram Stoker’s Dracula. 2 festivals a year are held to celebrate the gothic community in Whitby. One in spring and one at the end of October. This festival, founded in 1994, comprises music from live acts and DJ’s as well as stalls and other events across the town over several days.

Recent excavations have shown that the Whitby headland was settled during the late Bronze Age however it was around 664AD that the centre for religious business took place.

Synod of Whitby

Whitby Abbey was once the most important religious centre in the Anglo-Saxon world. In 664 it was the setting for the Synod of Whitby, a landmark in the history of the Church in England. The Romans and the Celtics, both practicing Christianity, had different ways of calculating the date of Easter. Although it was agreed that it had to be a Sunday and was calculated by the position of the moon, they could sometimes have dates 4 weeks apart from each other. This was beginning to cause upset as neither knew if they were practicing in vein. They called a big meeting with eminent clerics to settle the debate once and for all.

The two laid out their case, Bishop Colman of Lindisfarne led the Irish faction, while the Roman point of view was put forward by Wilfrid, abbot of Ripon. The two sides claimed authority from the Apostle John and from St Peter respectively. After a lengthy debate, it ultimately came down to one question. Who is the gate keeper of heaven? It is reported that King Oswiu chose the method that would allow him into heaven, declaring:

“Then, I tell you … I shall not contradict him. I shall obey his commands in everything … otherwise, when I come to the gates of heaven, there may be no one to open them, because he who holds the keys has turned away.”

The Ruins

Whitby Abbey Ruins
Whitby Abbey ruins

The Abbey stands tall towering over the town and coastline, a sure landmark for fishermen and sailors. Throughout history the Abbey has been demolished and rebuilt several times. Not much evidence remains of its earliest structure. The Danes pulled down the building in the 9th century possibly during a raid. During the 1700 and 1800’s the structure fell to the elements and in the 19th century, the popularity of Whitby grew and the ruins were opened as a tourist attraction.

Although most of the structure has vanished from sight it is easy to imagine how impressive this monastery, serving both monks and nuns, would have been. It had many windows and stood tall, stamping its mark on the landscape. Birds now roost in the highest recesses occasionally flying off to stretch their wings and ride the currants of air, before landing and taking shelter from the North Sea winds.

Don’t forget to check out our article on cheap attraction tickets. We got in for free with our Cadw passes!

Captain Cook and the sea.

lifeboat trip
A trip on a retired lifeboat

Captain Cook was born not far from here. It was in Whitby that he served as an apprentice before setting out as an intrepid explorer. He had many achievements in his career including mapping the Pacific, New Zealand and Australia and radically changing western perceptions of geography.

Whitby has long had a history with the ocean. Its location is a given that it will have a fishing trade but Whitby is also well known for its Whaling success. It was just as Captain Cook had gone exploring that 2 vessels from Whitby decided to begin a whaling business. Over the years this expanded and it is thought that Whitby’s whaling industry was responsible for the harvest of over 25,000 seals, 55 polar bears and 2761 whales. These were brought back to Whitby where great boiler houses built alongside the harbour rendered the blubber into oil.

Today a fishing community still operate from the harbour catching a wide range of fish as well as lobsters and other crustaceans. Commercial fishing also takes place and you can opt to go out on various fishing trips. It has also benefitted the local restaurants with the Magpie Café being the locals favourite place to get their fish and chips from!

We opted instead for a scenic river cruise for £3 each on a retired lifeboat. This trip wasn’t long, but was a nice experience and we first took a trip up river, before coming to the mouth of the river as the tide was coming in fast. We experience a bit of rocking from the waves but were in the safe hands of our lifeboat crew member.

The Town

The town of Whitby is busy today. It’s a weekday in the middle of September and the kids are back to school. The coach trips are in full swing today with 5 that we have seen in the larger car park. People pour into the town to take in the history and the atmosphere.

A friendly town that seemed to welcome tourism rather than scowl at it. With shops selling handcrafted items, gifts, a smoke house and the black Jet jewellery you are spoilt for choice.

As a seaside town there are also a number of cafes, restaurants and arcades to enjoy some leisure time. There are 9 beaches in Whitby ranging from sandy to rocky. Fossils have been found here following storms and a complete fossil of a dinosaur has also been recovered.

What about the Campervan?

A few days later we received word from the garage. The fuel pump has a plate on top and the leak was coming from there. Initially the garage was unsure if this could be repaired or if it would require a whole new fuel pump, and therefore best to do the timing belt too.

We eagerly awaited news and just wanted her back. Luckily, the mechanic managed to source parts for a repair and we didn’t need to replace the pump. We were lucky this time and Chewy is back safe and sound after her maintenance work.

We are so grateful for having a fantastic mechanic and that he was able to ensure she was safe for more adventures.

As always, we love to hear about your adventures so please drop us a few lines below if you have been here and tell us about your adventures.

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My Grandparents European Tour – Part One

Before we talk about my grandparents European Tour, I want to introduce them to you. My grandparents were amazing people. They met as air cadets around 16 years old and fell madly in love with each other. They were inseparable. So much so that they had to be on the same bicycle and were well known for riding their tandem miles to the beach – I say riding, my Nan sat on the back with her feet up and my Pop’s did all the hard work!  They soon married, settled down and started a family. The Push Bike Song, by Mungo Jerry, was played at Nan’s funeral in homage to their tandem adventures.

Push Bike Song – Mungo Jerry

As well as raising my mother and my Uncle, they also cared for foster children when they were younger. This impacted their freedom to travel until the children had grown up and they got their free time back. As a young couple I don’t believe they had ever left the country. My grandfather was evacuated to Leeds Castle during the war so it was a long time before tourism was at the top of the family list of things to do for many years as the country recovered. If you go to Leeds Castle and you look behind the Organ, you will find his initials carved there DWB Circa 1942.

Travel Bug – Is it contagious?

As soon as the children had left home, my grandparents caught a really bad case of the travel bug and there was no cure for it. They took to travelling to some really amazing locations such as Russia, California and on an African Jeep Safari. Sadly, as they became older their travelling got less.

When my grandparents passed away just 12 weeks apart, the job of clearing the house became enlightening as well as heart breaking. I thought I knew everything there was to know about them but discovering notebooks and trinkets in the house I have so many more questions I want answers to. Perhaps the urge to travel is genetic and that is where I get my inspiration from, as well as Pop’s stacks of national Geographic magazines I thumbed through for hours when we visited.

The Notebook.

Nan's diary grandparents european tour

One of the discoveries made amongst my Nan’s belongings, in her 1980’s decorated mint green coloured bedroom, held a beautiful surprise. A tiny notebook, the size of a mobile phone. On the outside it held no clues as to its contents. It was light blue and held together with a tight ring bound spine. It was a little bit grubby – you could see it had been handled frequently and it smelled like a cross between my Nan’s handbag (tissues and Trebor mints she would carry for her beloved husband) and old book. The smell that will soon be lost to technology no doubt.

Did I want to know what was inside? Of course I did! But I was scared too – what if it was something I didn’t want to know? I took myself off to a quiet corner of the house whilst other family members were tidying her belongings. The house was quiet but I felt as though my nan wanted me to read it.

What did it say?

Monday 10th

Day 1 – Rained all day”

It was a diary. A European tour that my grandparents had been on with friends. I read the whole thing from start to finish and was amazed at the details my Nan had thought to capture. From the hotels, the weather and purchases made to some funny moments along the way which were a bit of a shock to read! The 17 day tour saw them travel through many countries, over thousands of kilometres and from cities to mountain passes.

We would like to share their journey with you as we discover more about their schedule. A spot of research will help us tell you a little about the places they visited however we have not yet been ourselves! We are still trying to fill in some of the blanks so if you know anyone who could help us, please do get in touch.

My Grandparents European Tour – the story.

grandparents european tour coach

The tour was 17 days from start to finish and due to that, I will be bringing you this series in several parts.

Looking at some of the markers in the notes this must have been mid to late 1980’s? We are now researching their itinerary and looking at retracing their steps. We are now planning a European tour, incorporating the same locations my grandparents visited, in homage to the wonderful adventure they had. I would love to have a good look through their photo albums and see if we could recreate some of the pictures they took, however, they got rid of many photos when they were getting older as they didn’t want too much clutter in the house when they passed away for others to have to sort through… perhaps there are a few tucked away in the boxes we have yet to sort through.

London to Amsterdam

 “Day 1 – Arrived at Victoria 8:30. Train departed 10:30 Boat dep 1:30 to Ostend 13 ½ hours. Then caught coach – Arrived Amsterdam 8:30. Hotel terminus right near red light dist. Also near church where bells rang and tune played every 30 mins. Met Joanie, Lisa, Meg and Donna and we all went for a walk to red light district. Lisa took photo which could have turned very nasty. Went to bed 12:00 no sleep at all.”

After a little research we believe that this hotel is still operating today.  The Hotel Terminus is listed as a first class hotel located in the heart of Amsterdam, near many area attractions. The hotel is comprised of ten fine, monumental houses dating back to the 18th century.  We were also then able to try and locate a nearby church and I think we found the church my Nan was talking about. Not just any church, no, my Nan got the hump with what appears to be the oldest building in Amsterdam.

Oude Kerk.

Dedicated to the patron saint of the people of Amsterdam, St Nicholas, this church has been in situe since 1306. The original building was a small wooden chapel but has now grown into a Gothic hall church of today. It has stood through the iconoclastic fury of 1566, where an angry crowd barged in and destroyed statues, alter pieces and stained glass windows.  It is the final resting place of more than 20,000 Amsterdam citizens including famous names. The more prolific of these is artist Rembrandt van Rijn’s wife Saskia van Uylenburgh, who was buried here on 15 June 1638.

As for my grandparents visiting the red light district – I am shocked. They didn’t even like people kissing on the TV!!! To think that my grandparents went there and almost got kicked out – or worse – on day 1 of their European tour sounds like it’s a good job they are going to be moving constantly!

Volandam and Edam.

Volendam grandparents european tour

                “Tues 11th

Day 2 – got on coach 9.00 went to Diamond House. All very nice but too expensive. Then went back to Central station and bought a ticket for 7 guilders 50. Went to Edam and had a picnic then, to Volandam. Pretty little fishing village. Then to cultural centre of Amsterdam and saw cheese being made, pewter being made and copper being hammered, very interesting. We walked to Anne Franks House but too late to go in. Had dinner in hotel then another trip to red light district where Donna went in sex shop. Bed at 10:30 Dry and Sunny all day. Bad storms all night. Hotel Terminus.

GUYS! AGAIN? Donna, I don’t know you but were you leading my lovely innocent grandparents astray? The Diamond House appears to be a very large looking Jewellery shop. In the 17th Century, Amsterdam had the largest diamond manufacturing centre in the world. As such, even today there is a large amount of Diamond retailers and places to visit. We are unsure if Diamond House is still open, if anyone knows please do get in touch!


A charming harbour village, with the main harbour strip full of lively shops on one side and working fishing trawlers on the other. Apparently fresh seafood vendors line the path tempting you with their latest catch. To find out more about the area there is a museum featuring an assortment of traditional clothing, paintings and dioramas. There is also cheese factory, a popular attraction with visitors to the area! We will be sure to take a bag for life that day!


Situated on the edge of Ijsselmeer Lake and less than half an hour from Amsterdam you will find, not only a popular Cheese, but a one of the most important trading cities in Holland. It was also important in the timber trade and until 1922 a market was hosted. Through July and August, this market is recreated every Wednesday.

To Frankfurt

frankfurt grandparents european tour
Frankfurt City Skyline

“Wed 12th Day 3 – nice all day

Up at 6.00, left hotel 7:30 on way to Germany. Lunch in Cologne, then trip up the river. Had German Sausage and chips for lunch. Trip up the River Rhine. Took boat from Koblensk to Loreley Rock then caught coach to overnight. Hotel Zum Kurfuersten in Frankfurt. Arrived 6:50 had dinner 7:15 nice food. Hotel in woods – hope to see some deer.

Sadly, I do not have any information about where they ate in Cologne, or where they visited whilst there, perhaps this was just a short lunch break. According to google maps its around 4 and a half hours by car but would presumably be longer by coach. As far as recreating the European tour my grandparents undertook, some destinations may be a guess.


The 4th largest city in Germany. As a liberal city, the inhabitants are incredibly proud and vibrant. The main language is German but there are English speaking guides and information available for tourists. Colognes Dom Cathedral is one of the highlights of a visit here. Travel up 509 stairs to the top of the south tower to see the views. Among the Dom are 12 other Romanesque churches to see. Place a lock on Hohenzollern Bridge, the locking bridge, famous for its romantic ‘love padlocks’.

Lots of River Cruise tours can be taken and we have looked at tours to Loreley Rock. Legend has it that a siren named Loreley used to sit on this rock and bewitch sailors. This would cause them to ground their ships or lose control, sinking the cargo. Loreley, meaning murmuring rock, is a 433ft outcrop of Granite rock on the edge of the narrowest part of the river. Surrounded by reefs and rapids, a safe path is now marked with buoys. 

The hotel currently remains a mystery, I have found a hotel with that name but it isn’t in a forest. Could it be that with the surge in tourism, the forest has been a casualty of the travel industry? Has it been paved over in order to create a large holiday resort? Time will tell. I have tried to contact the hotel directly to ask more questions.


“Day 4 Thurs 13th

Up at 6:00 again. Went for a walk by hotel lake to see rabbits. Ate breakfast at 7:15. Went on coach to see Heidelberg (most shops closed but bought some sweets) which is on Neckar river. Then motorway to Ulm on Danube to Germany, stopping for lunch on motorway. Long wait at German customs. The took the Tachometer from coach as they thought someone had tampered with it. So it made us very late. Stopped at Alpine Village Lermoos for cake and chocolate (scrummy) but expensive. Then through Tyrol to Innsbruck. Stopped in Olympic Village, Hotel Ibis – Front seat that day, beautiful weather. Then went to a Tyrol evening in Innsbruck. Quite Jolly! Bed at 12:00

Today, they travelled over 530km from Frankfurt, Germany to Innsbruck Austria. Stopping first in Heidelberg, 78km south of Frankfurt, we are not given any clues as to how long they spent here. We can imagine it was not that long given the miles they covered but there must be a good reason they stopped here. Looking at current tourism stats for this city, we are told that over three million day trippers a year pass through to see the Old Bridge and the mighty castle. With ‘unparalleled choice of culture and entertainment, hearty yet heavenly cuisine and a picturesque setting nestled between the Neckar river and the foothills of the Odenwald Forest.


The birthplace of Albert Einstein. It is home to the tallest church in the world (Ulm Minster) and early renaissance town hall coated with trompe-l’œil frescoes. The city is located on the banks of the river Danube and therefore a really good location for trade over the years. From shipbuilding to fishing, this location is really important within the town. The defensive walls are still present and a great location for a stroll.


Zuspitze, Lermoos, Vanlifediary
Zugspitze, Lermoos

What everyone pictures when they think if an Austrian ski resort! Attractive traditional accommodation in a compact village clustered around the base of the ski slopes, with spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. In summer, para-gliders flock here to see the area from a different angle. Tandem flights are available for those who wish to have an adrenaline rush or you can take advantage of a wide range of walking and cycle routes.

After stopping here they travelled to Innsbruck. The Winter Olympic village, built to accommodate world class athletes and officials during the Winter Olympics of 1964 and 1976 are now home to 7000 people. Built on the eastern edge of the city, the high rise apartments, gym, indoor pool and multi-purpose hall and leisure centre. I have found an Ibis hotel nearby that could have been the one they stayed at however we are not sure. Again – if anyone has any leads we would be over the moon to connect with you.

Next Time… on my grandparents European tour…

In the next edition, we learn that my Grandparents travel over the Dolomites and continue their European tour to Venice, Rome, Capri and Sorrneto!

We are desperate for any information that could help us track down the hotels mentioned or help us discover more about the tour. We don’t know exactly what year or even what month this trip took place, that’s making it hard for us to find out the original tour operator.

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