With stunning views over the Firth of Forth, Bass Rock, and the East Lothian countryside at North Berwick, a day trip from Edinburgh to Tantallon Castle is not one you should miss. The ruins of this 14th century Scottish castle sit on the edge of a cliff overlooking the sea. And visitors can explore what is left of the fortress by climbing high up into the towers and down below ground into the prison.
It’s amazing how much you can see and experience in only 3 days in Edinburgh, Scotland. You can easily get lost in the magic of the city, what with its narrow and meandering cobblestone streets and that impressive castle looming high above the city. With its relatively compact city center, easy (albeit sometimes hilly) walkability, a long weekend in Edinburgh will keep you busy with a variety of sights that speak to fans of history, the arts, food, and more. Here are some of my favorite spots to discover in the Scottish capital city!
For the best view in Munich, you need to visit St. Peter’s Church, or Alter Peter, in the heart of the city’s old city. Part of Munich’s magic and charm is its low skyline. In most of the city, especially the Altstadt, no building is permitted to be taller than the Frauenkirche, the city’s iconic double-domed church. But with no dedicated observation tower centrally located, how to get a peek at this beautiful city from above and enjoy the Alps in the background? Around Marienplatz there are a few options, including an observation deck within city hall (Neues Rathaus). But Alter Peter’s tower offers stunning unobstructed views.
Around the world, there are towers, arches, and monuments that honor important statesman, war battles, and, well, anything a country or region deems important. In the Bavarian town of Kelheim, Liberation Hall (or Befreiungshalle in German) honors the victory over Napoleon during the Wars of Liberation in 1813. The massive round building sits overlooking the town and the surrounding Danube River Valley. Needless to say, the Befreiungshalle in Kelheim leaves a big impression.
Walhalla isn’t merely a Norse myth. It stands commandingly on the edge of a hill overlooking the Danube River Valley at Donaustauf just outside of Regensburg, Germany. But for those approaching from the street, a small forest of trees hides this spectacular neo-classical building. As you approach, and the trees thin to show off the secret it’s keeping. It’s more than a little striking — and that’s before you even venture inside to see the Hall of Fame it contains. Whether you visit the Walhalla Memorial to admire the architecture, the stunning view, or to go inside and see the collection of busts honoring famous Germans, you can’t lose. It’s an impressive outing.
With Oktoberfest not starting until September and the delightful German Christmas markets merely a fond memory, what can you expect visiting Munich in spring? Like so many popular travel spots, spring means warming temperatures and blooming flowers. And in Munich, it means a return to the outdoors as Biergarten culture resumes and a plethora of festivals begin. Spring brings a special excitement to Munich.
While the tradition of the Maypole isn’t unique to Germany, the Bavarians seem especially fond of what they call the Maibaum. Across the southern German state, you’ll find wooden poles in the region’s trademark white and blue shooting up into the sky. They’re in small villages, big cities, and popular destinations like farmers’ markets and your favorite Biergarten.
But how do these giant landmarks get there? While some towns embrace modern technology and use a crane, others are still doing it the old fashioned way with manpower. In the town of Aying, just outside of Munich, the local Burschenverein (a local men’s club) hoist the Maibaum by hand — and it takes the whole day!