We don’t have many days with more than 2-3hrs of driving, but this was one of them.
We woke early (7am) and had to wake the kids up. Someone was a terror going to sleep again, so was very tired…
We got ready as quickly as we could while chasing knee high octopuses (octopi? Octopodes?) around the room with underpants and dresses. We had a traditional Dutch breakfast of sprinkles on toast! Very yummy 🙂 And, yet again, our gluten free requirements were catered for superbly.
With over 5 hours of driving we decided to take a packed lunch… From the breakfast buffet. We enjoyed this 2:30hrs down the road, where we left Pip in Belgium and Bee in the Netherlands, while we visited Germany! Of course this was at Drielandenpunt, the place where the Dutch, German and Belgian borders meet!
There’s a viewing tower that gives panoramic views across the three countries. Pip wasn’t too keen on it until lead to believe it was the Paw Patrol tower! And then he and Daddy climbed all the way up the outside!
Bee and I took the lift… Which actually wasn’t much better! It was half glass panelled, and like much of the rest of Drielandenpunt, looked a little neglected. I wonder who maintains it? Perhaps the Dutch think the Germana are and the Geemans think the Beligians are and the Belgians think the Dutch are!
Before heading off on our way I wanted a stereotypical tourist photo with 3 limbs in 3 different countries… Well, it’s got to be done!
The next stop on our epic travelling day was the Nürburgring! We eventually arrived at 4pm, so ‘only’ had time to go and sit in the grandstand for a while and watch… F1 testing!!! It was just €2 each for adults and kids under 8 were free. Very reasonable. I grew up watching Formula 1 with my late father and this experience bought back so many happy memories and feelings. Actually hearing the NEEEEEEEEE-OOOWWWWWWWMM of the doppler effect as they whizzed by, IN REAL LIFE, was amazing! Das was über gut! I thought of my Dad and wondered whether he’d had that experience? I don’t remember if I was ever told a story of his going to a Grand Prix or anything?
We didn’t manage to stay too long though as the kids were finding it a bit loud (we do have ear defenders with us for the festival… But they are buried under tents and sleeping bags!).
So we headed back in and bough a Nürburgring sticker for the roof box and the cheapest toy cars we could find for the kids!
Unfortunately, we then had a rather difficult evening trying to get gluten free food for Pip. We tried two restaurants near the ring – Nope. Another one at a services on the way to our accommodation in Bacharach – Nope. And two restaurants in Bacharach, the latter of which could cater for him (or had at least heard of the condition). I think we probably could have got something suitable at any of these places, but language barrier and our tiredness didn’t help! By the time we sat down to eat it was 7pm, so despite this being an expensive restaurant, we went with it. It was worth it though, the food was A-MAZE-ING! Mike and I had Weiner Schnitzel and fries, and the kids had a gluten free pork schnitzel. Unfortunately the children were Devils because of how long it had taken to find food, so it could have been a much more enjoyable meal (for us and everyone else sat outside). Our waitress was lovely though and great with the kids. She learnt Rory’s name and told him off (in a nice way) which was actually really helpful!
Despite it being 8:30pm when we were finished, the kids were still bouncing, so we decided to try and tire them out by having a walk around Bacharach (I’ll post pics on the next post). Yet again we had a screaming Bee for bed time. Overtired and sharing a room does not work for this little princess!