• Mystery Dinner Theater Burg Ehrenburg
    Castles,  Food & Fun

    Burg Ehrenburg

    Medieval Murder Mystery Dinner There are over 20,000 castles in Germany.  20,000.  When most people think of castles, their minds go straight to the big ones, most of which are in Bavaria.  But with 20,000 castles, that means there is so much more to explore than just southern Germany.  In the Eifel alone, there are over 100 castles.  And just next door, along the Mosel, there are over a dozen more.  The nice thing about living where we do is that we are just a short drive from all of them.  And that means we can drive to them on a whim. Which is exactly what we did a few weeks…

  • Winter Hike Mosel Loop in Bremm Germany
    Hiking

    Hiking in Snow is a Great Idea – NOT!

    Hiking Calmont (in Winter) A few weeks ago, my husband and I had a discussion about the topography of the Eifel.  Twice a week, I drive to a city over an hour away where I teach a couple of university courses.  I’ve noticed, especially the past couple of weeks when we had snow, that there are spots along my drive where the weather is much more severe.  So, we got into this topic of the Eifel’s topography and realized that along my route I drive over a pretty decent amount of elevation changes.  My husband, who is very research oriented, got way deeper into the geography of the area and…

  • Food & Fun

    Five Restaurants in Bitburg You Should be Eating at

    Hello.  My name is Eifel Mausi, and I’m a foodie. Not really.  But my husband is. And the nice thing thing about that – combined with the fact that he grew up in this area – is that he’s always got the inside scoop on the best restaurants.  Don’t get me wrong; we still venture out and try new places all the time, but the places that turn out to be really good are usually the ones he heard about through the German grapevine. What I’ve noticed, though, is that all too often these restaurants either don’t show up on Trip Advisor at all or get ranked low on the list…

  • Why you need to experience the Vulkaneifeltherme in Bad Bertrich
    Day Trips,  Life Abroad

    Why You Need to Experience the Vulkaneifel Therme

    Before moving to Germany, you couldn’t have paid me to go into a mixed gender sauna.  Heck, you probably couldn’t have gotten me into an all women’s sauna either.  The idea of sitting around with a bunch of sweaty, half-naked (or totally naked) strangers in a dimly lit room just never sounded all that appealing to me.  I mean, most saunas feel like Texas in August anyway, so why would I want to pay to sweat when I could just go sit outside for free?  But, that all changed after I experienced my first German sauna.  I was very fortunate in that the very first time I went, the very…

  • Day Trips

    Backroads of the South Eifel

    From the Gateway of the Eifel to the Edges of Volcanoes It’s no secret that the Eifel has some of the most beautiful natural landscapes in all of Germany.  With Fall quickly approaching, we decided to spend a few hours driving some of the prettiest stretches of backroads between the southernmost tip of the South Eifel up to the Vulkan Eifel area.  We only skirted the Vulkan Eifel, though, as the focus of this drive was really on the area referred to by Germans as Südeifel. I spent the days leading up to our drive scouring the motorcycle forums because, let’s face it, they know all the best streets.  Unfortunately –…

  • Hiking

    Stausee Bitburg

    The Heart of the South Eifel When people think of tourism in Germany, their minds most likely shoot to one of three places: Bavaria, the Rhine River, or the Moselle region.  The Eifel usually doesn’t make the cut – even for temporary expats who live in it.  I remember my childhood years in the Spangdahlem area as a constant sea of travel to anywhere that wasn’t the Eifel.  Bavaria, the Black Forest, Amsterdam – these are the types of places we travelled to.  And what I’ve found is that, when I talk to my parents now about places within 30 minutes, 10 minutes, sometimes even down the street from where…

  • Day Trips

    Riquewihr

    The Most Beautiful Village in all of France Well, at least one of them. It was named one of the most beautiful villages in France by the association Le Plus Beaux Villages de France. And it’s not hard to see why. Riquewihr (pronounced Ricky-uh-vee-yuh) dates back to the 8th century when it was founded by a Frenchman named Roche.  The original name was Roche Villa, hence the pronunciation.  And as this area flip flopped throughout history between Germany and France, the spelling is actually German, as is the main language for most of today’s residents. This is one of the most well preserved medieval towns you will ever see despite…

  • Castles,  Day Trips

    Burg Sooneck and the Märchenhain

    Castles and Fairytales of Niederheimbach It’s not often that we make it out to the Rhein area because it can be a bit of a drive from the Eifel.  However, we decided to drive to Niederheimbach to see Burg Sooneck and the Märchenhain because I’d read a lot about both of them and just had to see it all in person. Let me tell you – I was not disappointed.   Burg Sooneck Burg Sooneck (pronounced zoe-neck) dates back to the late 1200s.  It sits on top of a hill, just above the village of Niederheimbach, overlooking the Rhein River. Once you get to the top of the drive, there…

  • Day Trips

    Piesport

    For a Low-Key Day on the Mosel River The Mosel area is undoubtedly one of the prettiest areas in Germany.  Fairytale castles, postcard worthy villages, vineyards as far as the eye can see…it’s beautiful.  But, with that beauty often comes stress.  One of my favorite spots on the Mosel is Cochem.  Unfortunately, it’s also a million other people’s favorite spot.  Going there stresses me out.  There’s nowhere to park, the restaurants are full, the streets are crowded.  I mean, it’s a must-see for anyone visiting the Eifel or Mosel region for the first time.  Absolutely.  But, for me at least, it’s one of those places that I keep for special…

  • Castles

    Schloss Bürresheim

    The Prettiest Castle You’ve Never Heard Of If you love visiting German castles, chances are you’ve probably already been to most of the big name places like Cochem, Burg Eltz, or even Neuschwanstein down in Bavaria.  While these are, without question, beautiful places, there are some lesser known castles that, in a lot of ways, are just as impressive. One such castle is Schloss Bürresheim – and, I have to say, this is one of my favorite castles.  It’s in the northern part of the Eifel, just outside of Mayen.  To put it into perspective… You’ll most likely have to drive through Mayen to get to Schloss Bürresheim, which is…