The Mr. and I have been on a bit of car renting binge lately. There have been some things we’ve needed to shop for, but also it’s just been nice to get out of Würzburg and see something new. Winter seemed to never end this year, followed by a cold and wet spring, and we were even more housebound than usual caring for the GABOJ in the months after his birth. So now that I’m well again, and we’re finding our new groove traveling with the GABOJ, it’s been fun to get out and about.
A few weeks ago, we rented a car and headed out one afternoon with no concrete plans other than a general area we wanted to explore. We first stopped in the small but picturesque village of Prichsenstadt. (You can check out their Wikipedia page here, though it’s all in German.) We parked the car and wandered around the main street, looking for a cafe so we could have some cake and coffee. We only saw one actual cafe, and it was pretty packed. We wanted to sit outside as it was a nice day, but the cafe’s spots outside were all taken. So we ended up wandering to the “Zum goldenen Adler” hotel and restaurant. They only had one option for cake, a crumble peach cheesecake; but boy, was it good. One could wander pretty much all of Prichsenstadt in much less than an hour, and apart from the main road through town there isn’t a whole lot to see, but it is a cute place and that cake would make a second visit well worth the drive.
From Prichsenstadt, we headed towards the town of Castell. We drove past Castell, up the hill near to it, and discovered by chance some really nice vineyards with gorgous views. We were excited to read a sign that had been erected that read, “Prettiest wine view in Franken, 2012” and felt like we had sort of hit the random day trip jackpot.
A few weekends later we did a day trip to Kreuzberg Monastery. Situated near the top of Kreuzberg mountain (3,045 ft high), the monastery still draws pilgrims and houses monks. But religion isn’t the only reason the hordes flock to Kreuzberg…they brew their own beer! Yes, what would any monastery be without its own brewery? (Probably thirsty.) According to Wikipedia, the beer was was brewed on site by the monks until about 1992, and is today brewed by laypersons under the supervision of the monks. Three different beers (Dunkel, Pilsner and Hefe-Weizen) are produced year-round, and a fourth (Weihnachts-Bock) is available during the Christmas season. I would like very much to taste their Weihnachts-Bock as I’m a big fan of bock beer in general, but we were also really impressed with the two bottles of pilsner we took home.
The Mr. and I weren’t quite so prepared for just how crowded Kreuzberg Monastery would be, nor how touristy. A large beer garden serves, well, beer, but also traditional Franconian cuisine. Stalls are located around the grounds selling hats, flags and other souvenirs. A short walk away from the monastery, however, puts one back in touch with nature, and, if you choose the more roundabout route as we had to with a stroller, hardly any other people. We made our way up to the top of the Kreuzberg mountain, where we enjoyed the beautiful outlook onto the Rhön valley.