The Bali Swing - A playground for adults in Bali

THE BALI SWING

PLAYGROUND FOR ADULTS

Before I jumped on a plane to Bali I’d already seen pictures of the Bali Swing on Instagram. However when I asked about it while in Ubud, it turned out that The Bali Swing was not known by everyone. You can use a swing in Bali on various spots, yet my aim was to swing above the gorge as seen on pictures, not just somewhere in the middle of the rice fields. And so I jumped into a taxi that took me to The Bali Swing, located just about a 30 minute drive from Ubud. Upon arrival I found out that it had only been opened a few months earlier, so it wasn’t a coincidence that not everyone yet knew about it.

De Geierlay Hangbrug

GEIERLAY HANGBRUG

MUST DO IN GERMANY

Looking for a something fun to do in the German Hunsrück region? Then definitely consider the Geierlay suspension bridge. This suspension bridge in Germany is located in the Hunsrück just a three-hour drive from the Dutch-German border. I visited the bridge three times in recent years, the last time I even was completely alone. Below you will first find my original report and photos from August 2016, followed by updates and tips that I added following my second and most recent visit in May 2019. Enjoy reading!

Traveling in new zealand

10 TIPS FOR FIRST TIMERS

TRAVELING IN NEW-ZEALAND

For nature that is. Most of us come to New Zealand because of the amazing landscapes and I will never forget what was written in the guestbook of the hostel I stayed in Auckland after arrival in my first trip. It said ‘please go to the South Island as soon as you can!’. Of course, we had unfortunately booked a return trip from AKL meaning we had to return up north and leave the South Island behind at some point, which made me ache to go back. The second time I went to New Zealand, I flew out of Christchurch, so your trip definitely ends with a bang of truly stunning nature.

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moselradweg duitsland

Cycling the Moselradweg between Trier and Cochem

The Moselradweg is a more than 300 kilometer long cycling route in Germany. It takes you along the twisting bends of the Mosel river between Metz in France and Koblenz in Germany, where the Mosel flows into the Rhine. Recently I cycled a part of this incredible cycling route, which is in the top 10 of most beautiful long distance cycling routes in Germany. I was promised a mix of historic buildings, steep vineyards, fine views and delicious wines. Curious if it lived up to its promise? Find the answer below!     Start of the trip in Nittel If you are not able to cycle the entire Moselradweg, then just like me, spend three days along the most special highlights of the route. I start my adventure in Trier, a beautiful city located on the banks of the Mosel that is home to a lot of ancient buildings. I pick up my bike at the train station and board the train directly from here southbound to Nittel.   Because of the summer 9 euro ticket, the train is busy and I am not the only cyclist: a handful of other bikepackers travel with me on this train. Fortunately, the Germans are helpful and space is made without hesitation for all bicycles that want to come along. Half an hour later the train stops in Nittel. I get off and think about how I can get my e-bike off the platform without too much effort. There is no elevator, it is heavily loaded and so I have to go down the stairs. A little further up the stairs again and I’m directly on the banks of the Mosel already. My bike ride is about to begin!     Cycling between Nittel and Trier (26 kilometer) My first section is between Nittel and Trier. Last year I walked the Moselsteig along the Nitteler Felsen. Now however, I am standing by the water and looking up to them. I get on my bike, it’s a sunny day in June and I’m looking forward to it. Although it is a weekday, more people have taken up the idea of going for a bike ride. Immediately I leave Nittel and I set course northbound towards the city of Konz. I arrive here about an hour later and I make a stop at the bridge where the Saar flows into the Mosel. I then leave the city and continue cycling to Trier. It’s pleasant to cycle along the water and the cycle path is well signposted. Good to know is that you can cycle the Moselradweg on both sides of the water, the Bikeline guidebook mentions what the ‘official’ side is. Because I would like to take a city walk in Trier, I decide to continue pedaling so that I am back in the city by the end of the afternoon.     City walk through Trier I cycle to my hotel and quickly change for a city walk that I want to take. This is marked on the free map of the city I got at the front desk. It is a short walk, however, it takes me past most of the highlights: the Porta Nigra, the cathedral and the amphitheater. There’s a friendly atmosphere in the city and I’m amazed by the beauty of the old buildings. Trier is said to have the best preserved old buildings in Germany. That evening I have a bit to eat at Wirtshaus Zur Glocke before I go to bed. Tomorrow is a new day!     Cycling from Trier to Bernkastel-Kues Today I cycle a distance of about 70 kilometers. Getting out of town in the busy morning traffic is a bit of a challenge, but once I’ve crossed the bridge, I pick up the trail again. The first part of today’s route goes along the left bank of the Mosel. I try to put in quite a few miles to leave the city as quickly as possible. Over the industrial area (also part of it) I eventually arrive in Ehrang, leaving the hustle and bustle behind me. Just past Ehrang the route returns to the water and at Schweich I cross the bridge again to the right side of the water. Just past Schweich you finally see what I came for: the steep vineyards along the water. From here on it is a lot of fun and I regularly take a break by the water.   At Mehring I visit the Roman Villa Rustica, which is one kilometer off the route. It’s again pretty warm today and so I can cool down here in the shade. After a short visit to the villa it is time to move on and find a spot for lunch. Just like in the Netherlands, entrepreneurs here are also faced with a staff shortage: many restaurants and terraces are closed. Finally I find a place in Neumagen to have lunch.     Side trip to Trittenheim From here I want to go to Trittenheim, where there’s a beautiful viewpoint. And I know because I was here on a hike two years ago. Fortunately I have an e-bike because it is quite a climb (and a few km off the official route) but in the end I’m at the top after fifteen minutes and I look out over the water. I refresh myself with some water (it’s now over 30 degrees) and then hush back down and onwards to my final destination for today!   I’m also visiting the Roman wine press in the town of Piesport. This has been built around the year 200 and measures 15 meters in length and 5 meters in width. Furthermore you can also visit the oldest wine village in Germany: Neumagen-Dhron, where you can find a replia of the Stella Noviomagi, a Roman wine ship.   My final destination today is Bernkastel-Kues, a cozy town with a beautiful castle. I arrive there at the beginning of the evening, after which I take a short city walk to explore the waterfront. The setting sun lights up Landshut castle and I decide that I’m a grateful person to be here.     Cycling from Bernkastel-Kues to Cochem Today there’s about 80 kilometers on the program: I cycle from Bernkastel-Kues to Cochem. It’s a public holiday and therefore considerably busier on the route. Again I try to make as many kilometers as possible in the morning as long as it is still relatively cool. Today there are also a number of unpaved sections, but in excellent condition and therefore very doable. I still follow the right bank of the Mosel and most parts of the mountains are covered with vineyards.   The Mosel makes a number of special twists here of almost 360 degrees, which you hardly notice when you cycle along the water. I make a lunch stop in Zell am Mosel, where I cross the footbridge back to the left side of the water. At Bremm a special section follows: the one along the Bremmer Calmont. This is the steepest vineyard in Europe, the vines are almost vertical here. Here you can do the Calmont Klettersteig. I did it a few years ago, read my experience here.   While the Moselradweg meanders under the Bremmer Calmont, I reach Ediger-Eller. This is a historic village with beautiful half timbered houses and walking through the small alleys is well worth your time. From here it is another 20 kilometers to Cochem. Vineyards, sometimes a meadow, campsites and beautiful rolling hills cover the landscape.     Back from Cochem to Trier Cochem is famous for its beautiful castle, so it’s quite busy here typically. I therefore decide to go straight to my hotel and enjoy a well-deserved glass of Riesling with dinner. The next morning I get up early to view the castle from the water. There are hardly any people on my feet and I actually manage to take a picture without other people. I cherish the memory because as soon as the first cruise ships dock, the silence is over. After breakfast I attach my bags to my bike and take the train back to Trier, where I return my bike. A special adventure has come to an end!     Practical information about the Moselradweg – The Moselradweg is 307 kilometers long on the right bank and 314 kilometers on the left bank of the river. You can alternate sides, the Bikeline booklet lists the recommended sides. If you have enough time, you can go up and back down on either side and cycle the whole trail twice. – The route is indicated with green signs. You basically just follow the bicycle signs to the next village, it’s super simple! – Most of the route is on cycle paths. Sometimes you cycle on the main road, but this is always clearly marked. I never felt unsafe for a moment, getting out of Trier alone during rush hour was a bit of a challenge. On bridges you usually must step off and walk, this is always signposted. – Wearing a helmet is useful but not mandatory in this part of Germany. – The trail is mostly flat, with an occasional climb. If the climb is very steep, it is indicated so that you can make extra speed to get up without problems. – You can spend the night in guesthouses, B&Bs or hotels, but of course also on campsites. Keep in mind that the campsites on the water are often mainly geared towards motorhomes. The hotels often have a parking space for your bicycle, covered or uncovered. I advise you to book in advance because hotels often have adjusted opening hours outside the high season. On holidays they are usually fully booked in advance. – I cycled about 70 kilometers a day, which was fine with an e-bike. Of course you can determine the stages and length yourself, there are plenty of villages along the way. – I rented my bike at Fahrradstation Gleis 11 at Trier station. Your bicycle is allowed on regional trains, not on ICEs. More info on Bahn.de.     Useful apps It’s helpful to download some apps in advance for this trip. I used the following apps: – Rheinland Palatinate app: for the route – ARGO app: you can experience the ruins on the go with argumented reality – Lauschtouren app: with this you can listen to the stories of the region on the go. Tip: download the stories in advance because there is not good mobile coverage everywhere. There are 40 audio guides for the Mosel Radweg ready for you to be listened to and you can learn more about the history of the Moselle region as well as the sights while using this app. It’s available in German, English and Dutch.   How I enjoyed the trail I’m a huge fan of the Mosel region, I try to come here once every year. Usually to go walking along the Mosel, but this time by bike. The Moselradweg is a popular cycling route and with good reason: the surroundings are beautiful, cycling is relaxed and there are plenty of overnight accommodation options along the way. The Moselsteig that I (partly) walked earlier goes largely through the hills and along the top, the bike path usually runs directly on the water. I thought it was a nice way to experience the Mosel with different eyes and enjoyed my three days on the bike a lot.   Conclusion and disclaimer Hopefully you liked this article and I have inspired you to take a bike ride along the Moselradweg. More information can be found on the Visit Mosel website and River Routes. I made this trip in collaboration with Mosellandtouristik as part of ‘Germany’s Top River Routes’. All opinions given are, of course, only my own.  

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bali voor beginners

Bali for beginners: tips for (female) solo travel in Bali

Welcome to this article with Bali tips for first time travellers and solo travel female in Bali. Although I have traveled almost the entire planet, I found my first trip to Bali quite exciting. No idea why, because you can read everywhere that it’s an easy destination, especially for a first time in Asia. Despite this not being my first time in Asia, it was my first time alone in Asia. In this post, I’ll tell you all about solo travel in Bali and Bali for first timers.   This article was first published in 2018 and fully updated in 2022     Bali travel tips for solo female travelers Looking back at it, it appears that I should not have worried about traveling in Bali alone. Not as a woman either. That is why I wrote this post for Bali for beginners, just to put you at ease if you are traveling alone or as a woman. Or as a couple, as these Bali tips are actually useful for everyone who’s a Bali first-timer! Enjoy!   Bali for beginners: arrival at Denpasar Airport Since taxi services like Über and Grab (more about that later) are not allowed at Denpasar airport and I didn’t feel like bargaining for hours for a transfer on the spot after a long flight, I had arranged a transfer in advance with Ketut whom I got in touch with through a fellow blogger. I sent him a WhatsApp message and we agreed that he would come to pick me up and drive me to Ubud. I also agreed the price with him in advance (300,000 IDR) so that I didn’t have to bargain about it on the spot. Along the way we stopped at a store, an ATM and he explained some things that were good time to know for my first time in Bali. In short: arrange a transfer in advance, which saves you a lot of stress on arrival. Do you want to have Ketut’s number? Send me an email!     Do you have a late arrival and don’t want to have to drive far? Then book a hotel near Denpasar airport and continue your journey the next morning.       Finding yourself a place to stay in Bali Since I find myself too old to spend the night in hostels in dorm rooms, I usually sleep in midrange or luxury hotels in Bali. Bali is not very expensive and for a for about 20 EUR/22 USD I already had an overnight stay in a great hotel with swimming pool, sometimes even with an infinity pool. What you should pay attention to when booking accommodation in Bali is of course very personal.   I myself always find it pleasant if a hotel isn’t very remote in case you need to walk back in the dark from the village to your accommodation in the evening. In addition, I always check whether there is airco in the room and whether breakfast is included. Oh and wifi in the room, because that is not a standard everywhere. I usually make a reservation through Booking.com, they have the best deals and sometimes the option to cancel for free, should there be a last minute change in my plans.    Looking for a good hotel in Ubud? Then check this article with my tips incl. a great and cheap hotel with infinity pool in Ubud!     Owww and do yourself a favor … book an amazing hotel with infinity pool for yourself and enjoy it! I treated myself last year to a stay at The Hamsa near Lovina. The best thing I could have done for myself and it was just some 20 EUR / 22 USD per night!     About money and so You can find ATM’s everywhere on Bali. You usually receive 100,000 IDR banknotes and sometimes 50,000 IDR. As you have to pay an X amount to your bank every time you grab cash from an ATM, I usually take out the maximum. One time this was 1,500,000 IDR and sometimes it was even 3,000,000 IDR. Small notes are highly looked for (eg those of 10,000 and 20,000) and I always keep them for taxi rides for example, since taxi drivers often pretend that they have no change. Debit card payments in shops and / or hotels are not particularly common, you can often pay with a credit card. However, keep in mind that an additional 3% surcharge applies in most places. In addition, it is often the case that prices on a menu are exclusive of tax and service. This can be as high as 15%. So check the bill before you pay because a tip is no longer necessary (but is appreciated).     Booking tours in Bali If you do not want to go out with a scooterbike yourself, you can choose to go on a tour and discover the best pieces of Bali. I did this, for example, while cycling on Bali and while climbing Mount Batur.   Tours are offered everywhere on the street by small agencies, but the quality of the trips can vary enormously. Check whether there is a minimum number of participants and, if so, whether this has already been reached so that the tour of your choice will happen and not be canceled at the last minute. Sometimes you have to pay for a tour immediately, do not forget to request a voucher and / or proof of payment. Occasionally I only paid when I was picked up at the hotel. In terms of price, never pay the initial price they ask, about half of it or somewhere in between is better. You can also pre-arrange tours via Get Your Guide so you don’t need to spend time on that on the spot!       Bali for beginners: transportation on Bali The taxi world in Bali is a special one. Services like Uber and Grab are unprecedentedly popular but not permitted in many places. This makes it sometimes difficult to arrange a taxi the cheap way. For longer transfers I usually contacted Ketut who then brought me somewhere for an agreed amount, but I also regularly took a taxi. If it is a taxi without a meter, it is advisable to agree on a price in advance (also: go for half of what they ask for) and with a meter of taxi you have to be careful they won’t use a fake meter. It’s also a possibility that non-metered taxis are more expensive in the evening because it’s busier on the road and more people need a ride. In many places you are offered unsolicited transport, I used this regularly but always on the basis of intuition. If it didn’t feel right, I didn’t.   Taking a motorbike as a solo female traveler in Bali I also took place on a motorbike a few times but especially around Ubud and the coast the traffic is chaos, so I wouldn’t drive myself there. Renting a car is not an option, renting a motorbike is. Remember that there are no real traffic rules in Bali and that you are not the first tourist to experience a motorbike accident, so be especially careful, especially if you have no experience with riding a motorbike.   In addition, it applies to many countries that you must be in the possession of a motorcycle driving license (in the Netherlands, you need to get this next to your regular license) in order to be able to drive in accordance with the conditions of your travel insurance. So always double check check if your motorbike is insured with your travel insurance because in many cases, it may not be.   Also, remember that the distances on Bali may seem small, but that a journey of around 50 kilometers can take hours. And I mean literally hours. Google Maps is your biggest enemy in Bali, because there’s always a traffic jam somewhere, along with a festival or something else that makes traffic super slow. Just something to keep in mind during your trip to Bali!   If you’re a solo traveller, you may enjoy an Indonesian Island Cruise which is one of the finest experiences you can have as a solo traveler. It will also connect you with other travelers within no-time.     Food & drinks in Bali for beginners You don’t have to be hungry in Bali at all, as there are countless restaurants and cafés, especially around Ubud and the coastal regions. What to eat varies from typical Balinese / Indonesian to Western cuisine. If you want traditional food, choose a warung, a local eatery. Western food is generally easy to find, especially in the known places, but is often more expensive. Since after three weeks I was a bit fed up with rice and noodles, I often opted for a restaurant where I could eat a sandwich or salad. Breakfast is normally included in your hotel and can vary from a simple banana pancake to an extensive breakfast buffet.   Tap water is not safe to drink, but you can buy bottled water everywhere or have your water bottle filled in many places. The coffee is usually very strong and dark stuff. In many places you get Bali coffee but sometimes they also have Nescafé. Nowadays they also have fancy espresso machines in more and more places, which I really got to enjoy!     Bali for beginners: where to go to? Where you should to go is entirely up to your own interests. If you want a beach, I advise you to choose Canggu and skip busy tourist spots like Kuta and Seminyak. Canggu is a laid back village with beautiful beaches where surfers brave the waves until late at night. Both times I have been to Bali in Canggu, I can always enjoy the vibe that hangs here.    Are you looking for a nice place to spend the night in Canggu? There are few large hotels and resorts, you will find small homestays and local accommodation in particular. I had a super nice homestay in Canggu right on the rice fields: Pondok Homestay.     Do you want a beautiful white sand beach and bright blue water? You don’t really have this on Bali, but you can find it on the Gili Islands. I stayed on Gili Air and I loved it. Here you can read more about my visit to Gili Air. Ubud is a place not to be missed but not loved by everyone because of the crowds. Yet it is a nice base for various trips to the Batur volcano and the various waterfalls, as well as the beautiful rice fields of Jatiluwih. If you want to see more rice fields, I advise you to go to Sidemen, this is also called the Ubud from 15 years ago. It is super quiet and it is beautifully situated. If you want to party and go to the beach, I’dd skip Sidemen!     Bali as a solo female – my experience I personally like to go to Bali and I have seldom felt uncomfortable there. That said, I always try to take into account the fact that I don’t walk alone on the street late at night, I keep my valuables in my locker and I carry no more cash in my pocket than necessary. I am also not waving my phone around and I am aware of my surroundings. They are all logical things, but I still wanted to mention them.   Of course you’ll have to deal with men in Bali who call after you and want something from you. However, I found this a lot less intimidating here than in other places in Asia. It is often the case in Bali that once you say “no thank you”, they accept this and do not keep running after you.   In addition, of course you just have to follow…

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De Eifelsteig wandelen

Hiking the Eifelsteig: tips for the best sections, maps and more

Hiking the Eifelsteig had been on my schedule for over two years. Unfortunately, last year’s pandemic and flooding in Germany made it impossible to depart for this adventure. Last week the time had finally come and I packed my backpack to go hiking for three days. In this extensive article I’ll give you my Eifelsteig experience, as well as tips for the most beautiful stages, more information about the route and where you can buy the hiking map for example. In addition, I did a culinary package, in which I slept in hotels every evening including a delicious three-course dinner. I carried my luggage myself, but you can also arrange luggage transport, so don’t be worried if you see me walking with a large backpack in the photos below, that was a by choice. Enjoy reading!     About the Eifelsteig sections The Eifelsteig is a 313 kilometer long hiking route from Aachen Kornelimünster to Trier in Germany. I already did the very first stage of the Eifelsteig when I was on workation in South Limburg and at least ten years ago I hiked a part near the Ahrtal. So long ago (even before I had a website) that I can’t remember much about it.   The 15 Eifelsteig stages are each between about 14 and 28 kilometers long. However, the hiking trail regularly passes through villages and with the help of the Eifelsteig hiking guide and your GPS you can of course also determine the length of your stages yourself, depending on how much time you have and how long you want to hike each day.   My Eifelsteig hike This time I hike three stages of the Eifelsteig, but in a different order than in the guidebook. My schedule looked like this:   stage 1. Müllenborn – Neroth (ca. 21 km) stage 2. Neroth – Schalkenmehren (ca. 17 km) stage 3. Schalkenmehren – Manderscheid (ca. 16 km)   I have written very specifically about a more or less number of kilometers because I always ended up doing a few kilometers longer at the end of the day. This is because regularly made trips to lookout points or other points of interest along the way and the approach routes to and from the hotels where I slept are also not included. So just add on just a little more so that you will not be faced with unpleasant surprises during your Eifelsteig hike.   I will tell you more about my day-to-day experiences below and will end this long Eifelsteig blog with useful tips, where to book and I’ll answer the questions I received from my followers, for example about luggage transport, the most beautiful stages, supplies, camping, use of trekking poles and more!     Arrival in the Eifel My journey starts on Monday with a drive from Arnhem to Müllenborn, which is just under three hours away. I’m always very happy with the changing landscape that you see after about two hours driving, when you drive on the A3 at Emmerich into Germany. The last 45 minutes of my drive is on local roads and through the hills.   My first overnight stay is Landhaus Müllenborn, a rural hotel with comfortable rooms and a beautiful terrace overlooking the hilly landscape. I check in, indicate what time I want to eat and decide to explore the route. Behind the hotel is the Roter Kopf lookout point and since I will be walking the other direction tomorrow, I think it would be a good plan to visit the Eifelsteig. I’ll climb to the viewpoint in about 25 minutes, take some photos, and get a taste of what’s in plan for me tomorrow.   That evening I get my first three-course dinner. I was a bit concerned beforehand because I recently became a vegetarian and Germany is in my view a country of a lot of meat. Fortunately, my worries for tonight turned out to be unfounded: I enjoy a delicious salad, asparagus and fritatta. I end up going to bed with a full stomach.   View the availability and rates of Landhaus Müllenborn here.     Eifelsteig hike Müllenborn – Neroth The next morning I get up early. I prepare a packed lunch at the breakfast buffet, my car stays here during the hike and I start my day. The sun is shining and it promises to be a warm day, so I make sure I carry two liters of water with me. This is partly because many restaurants and cafes have a ‘ruhetag’ at the beginning of the week, so I do not assume that I can refill water on the way.   The first kilometers are on wide country roads. The first highlight of the day soon presents itself: the Rother Hecke. This viewpoint is about 200 meters from the route, but definitely worth it. Below me is the town of Gerolstein, which I will walk through later today. From here I continue to the Auberg, the beginning of the Gerolsteiner Dolomites. The viewpoint here is also not on the route, but I decide to make a detour again over a stony trail. My effort is again rewarded.   After descending to cross the main road, I arrive at the largest rock section. The trail first runs along the bottom and is narrow. A little further on it spirals up and I again arrive at a viewpoint: the Munterley. Although Gerolstein is right below me, I’m not nearly there yet because the route again makes a big swing. Along the northern Munterley (tip: also go to the viewpoint here, you have beautiful views back to the Roter Kopf) and the Papenkäule. Finally a steep descent follows and I have arrived in Gerolstein.   Today’s section is not going too fast, at least, with all those beautiful viewpoints and photo stops I realize that I will have to increase my pace a bit. I therefore decide to leave Gerolstein for what it is and continue straight away. From Gerolstein it is quite a climb up, past the castle and into the forest. Here I can continue reasonably well, despite the fact that the path is still ascending. I make a short stop at the chapel in the middle of the woods and hike onwards to the Dietzenley.   The Dietzenley is a wooden watchtower with a 360 degree view over the hills of the Eifel. A must to climb this! From here on, the trail basically only follows wide forest trails and I cover the last few kilometers at a fast pace, before starting the descent to Neroth.   In Neroth I spend the night in Hotel Zur Neroburg. They have ruhetag today so the terrace is empty but for me they reserved a table in the restaurant. The main course is especially enjoyable: homemade ravioli with pesto and asparagus.   View the availability and rates of Hotel Zur Neroburg here.     Eifelsteig hike Neroth – Schalkenmehren Today promises to be a special day, because I’m going to the Dauner Maare. The part of the Eifel where I hike is the Volcanic Eifel or Vulkaneifel. This area was under the sea millions of years ago and owes its name to the volcanic activity that has shaped the landscape. The ‘Maaren’ are water-filled crater lakes, of which the three Dauner Maare are the best known.   But first up is a steep climb to up the Nerother Kopf. The trail is fairly steep but not technical and half an hour later I am at the top. No viewpoint, but there is a ruin of a castle. Fifteen minutes later I step out of the forest and into the next valley: a beautiful rolling landscape unfolds. I quickly hike towards Neunkirchen and not much later reach the city of Daun. The Eifelsteig route meanders through the suburbs and an hour later I arrive at the base of the Dauner Maare.   The first Maar is the Gemündener Maar. This one is deep below me this is one of the two lakes you can swim in. There are pedal boats on the opposite bank, there are changing cubicles and it looks touristy. I quickly continue my hike, even further up to the Dronketurm. This is an old stone watchtower from which you look down to the Gemündener Maar. I climb the tower, take some pictures and continue on a plateau.   Below me then lies the Weinfelder Maar. You are not allowed to swim in this lake and it therefore looks a lot more natural. The route circles the lake, first from above and later along the banks. I climb again to reach the last lake: the Schalkenmehrer Maar.   This one is probably the best of the three. The blossom is still in bloom here and from the north side I have a view of the church of the village of Schalkenmehren. Again I take too many photos before I check in at my overnight address: Hotel Schneider am Maar.   This hotel has modern and comfortable rooms. In the evening I enjoy a delicious flammkuchen with lots of vegetables and cheese. Tomorrow is my last day on the Eifelsteig!   View the availability and rates of Hotel Scheinder am Maar here.     Eifelsteig hike Schalkenmehren – Manderscheid The last section I hike is from Schalkenmehren to Manderscheid. As I can see on the hiking map, it seems to be a slightly flatter route than the previous days. However, the day starts with a climb and after one last look at the Maar, the Eifelsteig disappears into the forest. After a tough descent I arrive in the Liesertal. Here the Eifelsteig follows the Lieserpfad. This 74 kilometer long hiking trail was voted the most beautiful hike in the world by journalist Manuel Andrack, so my expectations are pretty high!   The Liesertal is a wide valley and again I can hike in a fast pace. Occasionally the trail leaves the wide track for a narrow mountain trail, but often the Eifelsteig route swindles along simple trails. However, the landscape is fabulous, in this valley there seems to be an enormous tranquility. My mobile coverage is lost and I hardly meet other hikers.   At the end of the valley are a number of rest huts, sometimes with a beautiful view over the valley. A great place for a break, before I start the last walking kilometers towards Manderscheid. I call the taxi that will soon take me back to Müllenborn and arrange a time with them.   Then suddenly the Manderscheid castle appears between the trees. I am almost there! Another small kilometer and I enter Manderscheid. In front of the Rathaus I take a seat on a bench and rest. In the end I walked about 16 kilometers away. Half an hour later the taxi arrives and takes me back to Müllenborn. From here I drive home, figuring that one day I will have to walk the other stages of the Eifelsteig.     Culinary Eifelsteig with luggage transport I did a culinary Eifelsteig arrangement. This product was set up by Eifel Tourismus to put regional products and small-scale family businesses in the picture. There is, for example, a 4-day package and a 5-day package. Included are overnight stays, breakfast, lunch and dinner (with regional products), luggage transport, a hiking guide and the transfer back to Müllenborn.   I would like to explain something about culinary, because ‘culinary’ has a different meaning for everyone. If, like me, you are used to eating at the Schnitzelstube in Germany, you will be pleasantly surprised by the delicious food. If you are used to dining at Michelin star restaurants, then culinary may not apply to you. The culinary also focuses on regional and seasonal dishes. I had a lot of asparagus and strawberries. As a vegetarian it was fine for me to not eat meat.     The best Eifelsteig section The most beautiful Eifelsteig stage I walked was the…

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HIKING INSPIRATION

Paklijst Wandelvakantie

Everest Base Camp Trek or Annapurna Base Camp Trek

Let me start by saying that both treks are tough and should not be underestimated. If you have no experience in trekking, you will have to carry lots of stamina and willpower in order to make it to either basecamp. It’s not easy but not impossible either. Which of the two is the most difficult is hard to say and really depends on various factors. If we look at altitude, Everest Base Camp Trek is definitely the most challenging reaching 5.364 meters above sea level. If you decide to trek via Gokyo, which I strongly recommend so you won’t have to hike the same route twice, you will have to cross Cho-La Pass which is even higher and reaches as high as 5.420 meters. Annapurna Base Camp is located at 4.130 meters above sea level, meaning you need less time to acclimatize.

Hiking in Europe: 12 of the best hiking trails

Iregularly have discussions with friends about whether you have to travel far away (= outside of Europe for me) every year. Not only because of the flying embarrassment that seems to be on the rise, but also because there are plenty of nice walks in Europe. You don’t always have to go far to see beautiful landscapes. Need inspiration? Then read on in this article with the beste places to hike in Europe, from north to south. All trails have been made by myself so I only advise you from my own experience, as you are used to from me. Enjoy reading and hiking!

The best hikes in New Zealand

 

The good thing about hiking in New Zealand is that it can be done from anywhere as there are numerous of trails all over the country, whether it’s close to the city or far away from civilization. In addition to my old post, I will also add more information about the best multi-day hikes in New Zealand as well as shorter hikes that can be done by anyone. Enjoy this list with the best hikes in New Zealand!

Safe solo hiking as a female: my tips and tricks

When planning to hike a long(ish) track, it’s wise to figure out as much as you can about the trail. What the distance is, how to get to the start and end and what the current trail situation is. Many of these things can be found online nowadays and by doing some research beforehand you can avoid unpleasant surprises along the way. Such as not carrying enough drinking water or having to make a river crossing. But also there may be ferries that are not running on certain days or the bus service you may need could be limited on certain days. All these things can be found out well in advance.

Voedsel tijdens meerdaagse trektochten

The best hikes in Tasmania

We found another hiking paradise and it’s called Tasmania. Located on the opposite part of the world for us, we spent a month here, exploring what Australians call ‘the Apple Island’ by foot and by bike. We knew that Tasmania had some pretty spectacular scenery to offer but we kept on being surprised over and over again by the diversity of this place. One day we’d stand with our feet in the sand on some stunning beach and the next day we’d be in a rain forrest discovering the prettiest little waterfalls. When you are going hiking here, there is no way you will get disappointed. Here is our selection of the best hikes in Tasmania!

A guide to things to do at Crater Lake National Park

For me, a visit to Crater Lake National Park had been on my bucketlist for many years. Being from The Netherlands it’s not nearly as well known and popular as other US National Parks such as The Grand Canyon or Yellowstone National Park. However, after hearing about this place from a friend, I knew I wanted to go here one day. I kept on googling Crater Lake National Park year after year, at some point I knew it was my time to head on another trip to the US and go for it. And so I finally got to visit Crater Lake National Park after wanting to go for such a long time.

ABOUT WE12TRAVEL
Hi! Welcome to We12travel (‘we want to travel’)! My name is Antonette. I’m a world traveler, writer, and lover of being outdoors. When I’m not traveling, I live in a cabin in the woods in The Netherlands. I spend my time hiking The Veluwe, the largest natural area in our country, which also happens to be my back yard.

On We12travel you will find everything you want to know about outdoor traveling, nature and hiking. From the best outdoor clothing to the greatest multi-day treks in the world, and everything in between. I’ve been inspiring readers from all across the globe since 2011 and am the leading Dutch outdoor and hiking blog ever since. I help you in your search for beautiful hiking destinations, preparing for your trek and planning your trip in nature.


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