Oct 3, 2012

A Lake Constance Getaway: Day 1


Contrary to popular belief, my life really isn't one big vacation. Ok, sometimes it does feel like I'm constantly traveling...living out of a suitcase with a camera and guidebook glued to my hands...but the truth is, the kinds of trips we go on here in Europe can hardly be classified as true vacations. You know, the vacations that offer hours upon hours of relaxation, often coupled with umbrellaed cocktails and a cabana boy named Julio. Yeah, we haven't taken a vacation like that in a really long time. Being up at 5am to catch a train somewhere only then to wait in the longest line ever just to see a statue of some guy wearing no pants. That's the kind of "vacation" much of Europe offers. And rightly so. There's a lot of history to be seen here. But, when we decided to start planning a trip to celebrate our 5 year wedding anniversary, we knew just the kind of vacation we wanted. A vacation with no schedule, no planes or trains, and honestly, no make-up required...thus the Lake Constance getaway was born! Granted we did spend hours researching various resorts in Malta and Majorca, but we had a strict budget (since we'd already taken a 2 week jet-around-Europe vacation with my family in May) and a need for simplicity. A good friend mentioned that she and her family took a trip down to Lake Constance for Memorial Day weekend and they fell in love with the place. Once D and I started researching more about it, we fell in love with it, too. This was going to be our relaxing, umbrellaed cocktail vacation...minus the cabana boy, for all intents and purposes.

Lake Constance or Bodensee, as it's known by the Germans, is a lake on the Rhine River located at the foot of the Alps in Bavaria. The Alps and Bavaria?! If that first sentence couldn't sell you, nothing could. What's even cooler is that it is bordered by 3 different countries--Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. Three different stamps in your passport just for visiting one lake (well, that is if they actually stamped your passport...which they don't...kind of sad, no?). Lake Constance is completely fresh water and is Central Europe's third largest lake, after Lake Balaton and Lake Geneva. It also holds three small islands--Mainau Island (which you'll see in a later post), Reichenau Island, and Lindau (we wanted to go there, but we got lazy...so we're saving it for next time). Oh and remember our little detour to Rhine Falls, Switzerland? Well, the Rhine Falls actually flows into Lake Constance. Neat, huh?

We rented a little apartment on the top floor of this ultra modern lake house in Hagnau, a very small, fairly non-English speaking town on the German side of the lake. The town itself had a few cute shops, some authentic German restaurants, and a harbor littered with sail boats, eis (ice cream) stands, and seagulls. Picturesque in every way. On the agenda for our 5 day stay was a whole lotta nothing...a few touristy things thrown in just so we didn't look like complete bums...but mostly a whole lotta nothing. Oh and a fair amount of smooching and cuddling happened. I mean, duh. Can't forget the smooching and cuddling. ;)

{Driving into Hagnau...the views were already amazing!}
{Our apartment with vineyard views out back--lake and alpine views out front}




On our first night at Lake Constance, we totally took it easy--unpacked our bags, unloaded our cooler full of food (travel tip: if you're going to be staying at a fully equipped apartment for a at least 4 days and don't have far to drive to get there, pack a cooler full of food from home and bring it with you...cuts down the cost of eating out and grocery shopping on the economy and you can just cook from the comfort of your own apartment...in your underpants, if you want!), and took a walk down to the harbor to catch the beginning of a Lake Constance sunset. After watching the sailboats come into port, we made our way back to the apartment for a little grill out on our patio with a view.




Such an amazing beginning to a quiet lake getaway, don't you think? Day 2 of our Lake Constance trip was spent exploring Meersburg and Mainau Island. Stay tuned for a recap!

Happy hump day, folks!

18 comments:

  1. Beautiful! Sounds like a perfect get away!

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  2. Wow, this looks like heaven! And the meal looks wonderful, too!

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  3. wow! Talk about beautiful pictures!

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  4. Wow Casey, I love these pictures! ♥ Came to return the favor of a follow! Hope you have an amazing Wednesday!
    Katlyn

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  5. Now this is my kind of vacation! And you both look so great...I miss your faces and love you more!
    M

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  6. wow these pics are amazing and totally make me wanna get away! ha. we are planning a vacation this December so if I can just hold off til then! hahaha. By the way, I could've SWORE I followed you but apparently I didn't - I am NOW! haha. very cute blog and you are just simply a beautiful lady!

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  7. What great pictures! The lake reminded me a lot of back home with the mountains in the background. Looks like a great getaway! Can't wait to see the posts about the islands!

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  8. Can't wait to see more, but from the looks of it, it was a great weekend. It looks like it's about 6 hours from us. If we end up staying here, I'm adding it to my list of places to go—mostly, because I want to stay at the apartment you stayed at! I'm a sucker for nice, modern-looking places!

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  9. I love a relaxing getaway that allows for cooking in underpants! Looks magnificent.

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  10. I love a relaxing getaway that allows for cooking in underpants! Looks magnificent.

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  11. Wow! Such beautiful photos!
    I found you from the GFC Blog Hop, i'm your newest follower now! Hope you can check out my blog as well!
    www.nellecreations.com

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  12. The place looks sooooooo wonderful!would love to experience the place as well..It seemed like you truly had a great time there!the pictures are amazing! :)
    new follower here from the Follow Me Wednesday.hope you can drop by my blog as well.

    hugs,
    Meg http://confettiandfireworks.blogspot.com/

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  13. Gorgeous!!! I just found your blog today. Loving it so far. Great pictures!

    xo
    Dani

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  14. What a fun getaway for you and the hubs! It looks like an absolute gorgeous place. I enjoyed viewing all the amazing pictures too.

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  15. You captured your getaway perfectly. Such a beautiful place. The picture with the sun over the water is my favourite!

    Catriona @ Precious Impressions

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  16. gorgeous photos! lovely getaway xxx

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  17. The apartment you stayed in is so cute. I LOVE the red cabinets.

    And I wouldn't mind having a view of the harbor every day to come home to.

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