I visited Strasbourg in 2014 and was excited to go back this year. The last time I visited, I hardly documented my trip. We were so excited and all over the place. We woke up tired each day but kept moving. This time, I knew to take it easy as I was not going to have time to rest on my return.
I arrived on my birthday and my friend (Vivian) and her husband being the amazing people that they are, had their friends over to make my day.
Vivian knew my arrival time so she, her husband and their baby were at the train station to collect me. When her husband swooped me into a big hug saying happy birthday, I knew I was going to have a great day. She was so excited that her husband beat her to wishing me a happy birthday.
As we got home, seeing my photos on the door and the effort they had put into welcoming me warmed my heart.
As we walked in, the smell of food was everywhere, she was cooking up a storm while he gladly ran all the errands.
|This was some of the food, there was more
|My black forest cake
Then the guests started coming in...
|Vivian giving a speech...hehehehe
|My goofy self
Speeches, friends, food and when your friend knows you so well, she gets you the perfect birthday present. She knows how much I love reading and I was trying to get this book.
|Birthday present = The handmaid's tale - Margaret Atwood
|Make a wish, blow the candles
|My super amazing hosts
The next day, my tour of the city commenced
|Pont St. Nicolas
There are a few bridges around Strasbourg but we started from St. Nicolas bridge. From here, you can get a great view of the tourist part of the city.
|Wandering through one of the narrow alleys
|Cobble stone walk ways
|St. Thomas church
Then we headed to La petite France. The allure for me is all about the quaint and unique buildings. A part of the buildings appear to be made of wood and the buildings are painted in bright colours.
|This is everything 'La petite France'
|A band playing at the festival
|Festival of harvest and tasting
We saw as much of the city centre as we could see.
|Look at this edifice
Notre Dame de Strasbourg was once the tallest building in the world for 227 years. The sandstone cathedral is probably still the highest surviving structure to have been built during the medieval period.
|The streets of Strasbourg
The Council of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) are in Strasbourg. I took photos of the building from different angles as I was wowed by the architecture.
I was hoping to go into the Council of Europe (CoE) for a tour but I was told that I have to book in advance. There is a number to call and an e-mail address. If you would like a tour, book in advance and most likely, a slot will be given to you the next day.
The last time I was in Strasbourg, we went into parc de l'orangerie but I hardly explored the place. I probably just stopped at the entrance. This time I went in and I was marvelled. It is such a beauty.
The park is huge, has so many things to do. There is a play area for children, it is a perfect spot for jogging, for walking, cycling, for lovers. On the other hand, one can find so many quiet spots on days when this is needed to read or for reflection.
The bowling alley we went to on the night of my birthday is all part of orangerie. I noticed that many people from the CoE, ECHR and other offices close by walked into the park with their lunch. It was quite busy at lunch time.
I spent about 3 hours wandering around and I just couldn't stop taking photos.
|Writing on walls and benches never seems to get old!
|This lil man is a handful
|Restaurants in boats on water
We went by the National Theatre of Strasbourg and so many other places. If I were to add all the photos, this post won't end. The signature dish here is choucroute...be sure to try. I didn't get any photos sadly.
On the other hand, a fun thing to do if you are in Strasbourg would be to go to Europa park. It is the largest in Germany and the second most popular theme park in Europe. I went there in 2014 so these photos are from back then. Europa park is in a town called Rust.
It takes less than an hour to get to the park from Strasbourg and it is easy to get there by public transport.
|Girls trip 2014
We went on some crazy rides and it was such good fun.