Highlights from Camp Europe 2006

Camp Europe – Chris’ and my Christmas holiday last year. 5 weeks of non-stop site-seeing, exotic food savouring, wine-drinking and plenty of train rides all throughout Europe. Oh and a quick stopover in San Francisco as well as Tokyo (OMG Tokyo is the coolest place on earth and I NEED to go spend some more time there).

There are some things about the holiday that I feel I need to write about here, just because they’re way too cool not to mention. And it might just inspire a few others out there to go and see these things for themselves… :)

Pier 39 – San Francisco – USA

First of all, San Francisco is, in fact, as nice as everyone says it is. We even got to chill with some of those Free Hugs people before we’d even reached our hotel!! Although we arrived there just before Christmas (American winter), it was amazingly sunny and warm enough during the day to wear a t-shirt. That’s better than it was back home in NZ, in what is meant to be our summer! Pier 39 was lovely, full of souvenir shops and restaurants. I can only imagine how beautiful it must be to walk around there during the summer months.

San Francisco strikes me as one of those cities where there is always something on. I think I’d really like to live there one day, I must add it to my list :). It’s probably a wise move to have some sort of guide book with ya while you’re visiting, but if you’re only on a stop-over like we were, why not try the .

Pier 39 - San Francisco, USA
Pier 39 – San Francisco, USA

The Top of The World – Jungfraujoch – Switzerland

Chris and I made the best decision ever when we decided to go on a day trip up to The Top of The World – Jungfraujoch whilst in Interlaken, Switzerland. We caught the Jungfraubahn – a train that takes you up 3471m to the top of the Jungfraujoch. Man, what an experience. The train ride itself was awesome, crunching it’s way up some very steep areas and then finally through a really really long thin tunnel close to the top of the mountain. At the top there were a couple of restaurants, a couple of viewing platforms, and best of all, an ice palace!! You can walk through it, slipping and sliding around like unco-ordinated muppets. Hehe ;) I totally recommend this trip for anyone passing through the area. For more info, why not grab a copy of Lonely Planet’s .

Jungfraujoch - Switzerland
Jungfraujoch – Switzerland

Brugge – Belgium

Belgium is already very well known for its chocolate, so I won’t go on about that. Instead I’ll talk about Brugge, an incredibly cute little city in the West of Belgium. Apart from the lovely town square that is surrounded by beautifully decorated buildings and a big church with an imposing spier (that is, interestingly, leaning slightly to one side, ala Tower of Pisa), Brugge has a maze of little cobble-stoned roads lined with beautiful little shops, restaurants and cafes. It also has a series of waterways, giving it a venice-style glamour. There is a chocolate factory, a museum where you can see and worship a drop of Jesus’ actual blood (apparently!!) and at Christmas time there is a great European-style market place in the town square selling hot mulled wine (Gl├╝hwein), hot chocolates, crepes and waffles smothered with chocolate, hot donuts, and plenty of other savoury foods as well. YUM!! Basically, if you’re looking for a place to chill out for a few days, Brugge is a great choice.

Town Square - Brugge - Belgium
Town Square – Brugge – Belgium

And if you’re going to or at least thinking of going to Brugge, why not pick up a Lonely Planet guide book for some handy tips on things to see and places to stay. I recommend their .

If you want to read more about this holiday or see some more photos, visit our trip on TravelStash.

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