Ingolstadt is the nearest city to Eichstatt. We pass through it on train ride to and from pretty much anywhere, but happily there is an express bus that we caught just ten minutes from our home yesterday morning. It was a lovely bus ride as all the trees are changing and it was just 30 minutes long. Rachel thought the bus driver was taking turns a little sharply in response to the kids enthusiastic whoops as if they were riding a roller coaster. Honestly, roller coasters are more safe and at least have restraining devices.
The first stop we made while walking around this GREAT shopping town was the viktualienmarkt, or grand outdoor market. Pretzels for the kids and coffee for the parents. We resolved to return for lunch in a couple hours. From there we went to the Rathaus to acquire a city map, which we had left back in the apartment in our rush to catch the bus that morning.
Ingolstadt has fun little playground equipment spaced throughout the city every block or so. On one block there is a rocky-horse, on another a merry-go-round. Perhaps the one most enjoyed by the kids was a trampoline built into the sidewalk.
The churches we visited were very pretty. St. Moritz and a Franciscan church, Franziskanerkirche. St. Moritz was large like a cathedral and we were drawn to it because of the music we could hear coming from it. There was to be a concert later that day and the orchestra was practicing. They were in a different part of the church, so we didn't see them, but could hear them the whole time we were visiting. The kids heard what they thought was random tuba oompas, but we realized later that the heavy church door just needed some WD-40.
We happened to catch a benediction as we entered the Franciscan church. The kids' favorite part of this church was the Krippa, which is a miniature scene that lights up when you push a button.
Lunch was delicious as Philip introduced Rachel and the kids to Doner, a Turkish pulled, seasoned pork. We ate a the markt, where there were tables under big umbrellas complete with heating lamps.
Another highlight was visiting the Neues Schloss, or "new castle". The cannon row in front dated to the 1500s; so "new" is a relative term.
When we returned to Eichstatt we visited a wading area in the Altmuhl that Edy has begged to go into since we arrived. The mountain stream was ice cold and no matter how we tried no one really "got used" to it. Unfortunately Lucy slipped in and got wet up to her hair, but was safe in Daddy's arms in a second and warm and dry in his sweater soon after.
All in all and fun adventure, definitely to be repeated, except for Lucy falling in to the river!