S: EUROPE 2011
FC: Draebs in Europe 2011
1: May 29th arrival in Paris! In front of Hotel de la Bourdonnais. Notre Dame in the morning | WOW! What a flight
2: VERSAILLE There was almost a strike. The fountains were set to music. Windy day. Enormous gardens. Loved the Hall of Mirrors | Welcome to Jon's Palace!
3: Fun to see treasures of The Louvre Mona Lisa, Venus De Milo, Slaves by Michelangelo Then to the Orsay for the Impressionists and Van Gogh | The Louvre pyramid from inside and out. And from across the Seine.
4: The Eiffel Tower from Trocadero Square Jon and Julia waited at the top until the lights came on The girls at the Arc de Triomphe
5: Belgium | Julia's Day : Chocolate, Waffles, Pool! Chocolate shops were everywhere near the Grand Place. We had waffles from a streetside vendor. So much fun at the hotel pool.
6: The Grand Place was certainly grand. Very ornate, medieval style buildings surrounded by restaurants with colorful flower boxes. And of course, chocolate shops. Rowdy soccer fans stormed the area that afternoon.
7: Classic London - a black cab ride, Trafalgar square, and Parliament in the rain. We also visited Covent Garden to see the street performers
8: Joined by The Middlemists on the River Thames. Tower Bridge and the Tower of London. Loved the crown jewels with the worlds largest diamond
9: Westminster Abbey was amazing. We visited Kensington Palace and Gardens as well as nearby Hyde Park. We rode a double decker bus and Jack made sure to wear the right soccer jersey
10: Seeing London from the Eye was spectacular. We took in the pagentry at Buckingham Palace. The kids keeping time with Big Ben.That night we went to the Theater and saw Billy Elliott.
11: Our arrival in Nice was tricky - but once we were there we had a great time Jon was our tour guide through the bustling city We enjoyed a beautiful seaside walk after dinner
12: Living it up at our hotel and on the beach in Nice, France
13: Monterosso in the Cinque Terre was an unexpected treasure. A soccer net, rocky beach, an amazing lunch, and a short hike made for a great day
14: Wow that tower really leans! Fun at our beautiful villa in Tuscany - playing soccer and bocce ball. Nice relaxing time with great food
15: We found the town of Vinci with Jon navigating. Checked out museum of Leonardo da VInci's work. Julia making gelato in the kitchen
16: ROME | First stop - The Colosseum. 2,000 years old and still amazing. Interesting, although the history was gruesome
17: The Forum - we walked in Caesar's footsteps. Julia fits right in
18: The Vatican Museum We almost missed our appointment One treasure after another | St Peter's Basilica Breathtaking - floor to ceiling. Michelangelo's Pieta was magnificent
19: Rome at night was amazing. Trevi Fountain was our favorite The Spanish Steps were a cool hangout. Piazza Navona was an artistic carnival
20: Dinner spots in Rome. Our apartment near the Pantheon. Pinochle , of course
21: Jack in the Pantheon Jon by the Tiber River | At Villa Borghese and the surrounding Gardens Bicycle built for four
23: We cheered as we drove through the waterfalls and the majestic Italian Alps. Salzburg was charming. Fun to play in Hohensalzburg Fortress
24: AUSTRIA Hellbrunn Castle and trick fountains. Sound of Music gazebo. Beautiful hike at Berchtesgaden. Playing at a park
25: MUNICH Jon revists the Hoffbrau House;Soccer in the English Garden; The Glockenspiel; Jack at the Munich soccer stadium
26: With Gretel in Uberlingen at her beautiful home | And playing around the town
27: Stein am Rhein
28: With Gretel as our tour guide we had a wonderful day at Meersburg Castle followed by a ferry ride across the Bodensee Lake to Mainau. The flower gardens were spectacular
29: RHINE FALLS We could really feel the awesome power of the falls from the viewing platforms - An unexpected trip highlight
30: The stunning beauty of Lucerne Switzerland. Swimming in the very cold lake
31: The Lion and one last gelato