We stopped of in Munich for a couple of days & nights on our route back to England, and as well as visiting the Wollmeise store, we also made a visit to Hellabrunn Zoo. It's a pretty famous zoo, and for the most part it was really good... I'm a bit sensitive about the whole animal in cages issue, and did see a couple of animals looking a tad depressed. Still, it was one of the best I've seen and that's worth something.
It was Aran's first trip to a zoo, and boy did he have fun! It was the first day ever in his short life to have stayed awake the whole day - he flatly refused a daytime nap. Can't blame him, really.
He met some goats and some sheep (and spent much of his time here either running around squealing with excitement or getting down and dirty amongst the sheep poo)
Amongst other things, we saw lots of penguins
and quite a few giant turtles (with very inspirational shells!)
We saw some weird and wonderful sculptures and water features
He marvelled at the monkeys and apes
And mummy took way too many photos of the corals (more pattern inspiration)
It was such a fantastic day, well worth a visit if you're in the area. Even though we didn't go into the centre, we liked Munich, but not our campsite so much. We stayed at the Thalkirchen campsite, only a 20 minute walk from the zoo, and whilst it was clean with all the amenities you could want, it was too big and everyone was crammed in like sardines.
After leaving Munich we headed north and stayed in a parking area in north Germany over night (gotta love European services and parking areas - none of this limited parking rubbish you get in the UK! You can pretty much park up anywhere and stay the night) and then headed into Luxembourg where we stopped for lunch, and then on into Belgium where we stayed at the recommended Memling campsite. This was a much nicer site, with it's eclectic mix of statics, gypsy caravans, tourers and tents. Sadly though, it was too costly for our budget, else we've had stayed an extra night and gone into town - I've never visited Brugge. We're thinking we may stop again on the way back to Italy, as it will be the end of the season and a tad cheaper.
After leaving Brugge, it was only a couple of hours before we hit Calais, hopped on the ferry and got back on English soil. Aran took in a few extra countries on the route back - Austria and France (we did Germany, Belgium, Switzerland & Luxembourg on the way down from Holland to Italy) and so far he's a pretty well travelled little boy ;)
It's a bit strange being back, haven't really seen many people yet, mostly family, yet there's plenty of time to catch up. Think we've needed a few days to adjust. Internet access is limited - we're parked up on my Dad's forecourt and although he does have broadband, his PC is old and wonky and there's competition to get online (no wireless, despite our best efforts)
Whilst we're here, I'll be having a bit of a destash - a few yarns, but mostly fibre and I'll also be selling my drum carder. I'll post details in the next couple of days if anyone is interested!