Culture and Skiing

Two weekends ago I went to the Frankischer Schweiz area of Bavaria. We stayed for 1 night in a small town in a valley. There were castles all over the ridges. We went to look at one that was first built in the 1000s. We also looked at a big old church and monastery.
A typical house in Franken
Ruins that we went to
I thought it was interesting that the culture in Über Bayern and the Fränkische Schweiz was very different, even though they are so close together. People in Franken don't speak Bavarian but they have their own dialect. They also build their houses in a different way to Bavarians. There are lots of small breweries in the area as well.

Last weekend I went skiing on Stubai Glacier in Austria. It is about 2 hours away from our house. It is 3210 metres above sea level! We stayed in a nice apartment at the bottom of the mountain and caught a cable car up every day. It was a very beautiful mountain with lots of rocks and a great view from the top.


Going to Munich and other adventures...

Last weekend, I went to Munich. It is about an hour away by car. We went to the Deutsches Museum, the biggest technology museum in Germany. It had lots of interesting exhibits about almost everything.
Next we went on a sight seeing bus. It took us around the city centre, showing us lots of historical buildings like the Teatiner church, the Bavarian Parliament House and the old city gates.

This weekend I went swimming at a water park with slides and a spa and a sauna and a big pool. It was about 15 minutes away. On Sunday we went to church. At church we sing songs, read bible verses, say prayers and eat cake and bread.

On Monday (today), it snowed for the first time this season. When I woke up and saw that there was snow I was so excited. There was a little bit less than a centimetre but it lasted all day and there is still some around. Hopefully it snows more in the next few days
The snow this morning on the way to the bus

It's also getting darker in the morning. When we get on the bus at 6:37 the sun is nowhere to be see and when we arrive at school at 8am it has only just got light. It would be fun if it wasn't so early! Sometimes, you can see a really nice sunrise over the mountains.

At school, not everyone always speaks German. People swap between German and Bavarian, sometimes even mid conversation which makes it very hard to understand.

I am looking forward to going skiing on a Glacier in Austria in two weeks.
I will write about it in my next blog.



This week, my host family took me to Berlin.
Victory Column

We flew from Munich on Monday afternoon.
After landing in Berlin, we went to our hostel near the middle of the city.

On Tuesday we looked at the famous landmarks of Berlin. First, we walked through the Tiergarten park to get to the Victory Column, a 67 metre tall tower built in 1873 after the Unification Wars against France, Austria and Denmark. There is a spiral staircase inside and from the top there is a very nice view of the city.

Brandenburg Tor
After that we walked down the street to the Brandenburg Gate. There was a fancy meeting happening so we couldn't get as close as usual but it was still very cool.

Next we walked to Checkpoint Charlie, where people crossed from West Berlin to East Berlin.

We walked across the city to the Gendarmenmarkt. It is a big square with some old palaces and an opera house.

Then, we went to Alexanderplatz and saw the Fernsehturm (TV tower), the tallest building in Berlin. We couldn't book a place to get inside until Thursday.

Finally, we went to the Berlin Wall Memorial and museum. It was very interesting.

For dinner, we went to a traditional German pub.
On Wednesday we went to the Palace of Tears. It was a museum about the crossing from East Berlin to West Berlin by train. Then we walked to the Museum Island. It is an Island in the river Spree covered in museums (about 5 of them). We went in to the Pergamon museum. It is about ancient history in Europe and the Middle East.

Holocaust Memorial
The next stop was the Berliner Dom, a big cathedral in the middle of Berlin. It was built in 1905.

Berliner Dom
After a quick look at the dome, we caught a bus to the Holocaust Memorial. Above ground, it was a big area with lots of concrete blocks. Underground, in the museum, there was an exhibit with lots of information and sad stories about the Holocaust.

The last thing we did on Wednesday was go to the Sony Centre, a big shopping area. We looked at the Berlin Mall, and then had dinner in an Italian restaurant. It's right next to a "Traditional Australian Restaurant."
Sony Centre

TV Tower
On Thursday, our last day, we got up and went to Alexanderplatz by underground train. We went to Alexaplatz, the biggest shopping centre in Berlin. After a short shop, we went to the TV tower for our booked visit. It is 368 metres tall, the second tallest building in the EU. The view from the top was really good. Berlin has no real skyscrapers, which surprised me, so we were a lot higher than anything else in the city.

The last stop of the trip was the Technikmuseum. We didn't have much time before we had to go to the airport, so we only looked at the aeroplane and ship section.
The View

Technik Museum
Then, we took the underground to the airport and flew home. It was a very fun trip but we were all tired by the end. Thanks to my wonderful host family for taking me.


The highlights from my weekends

Last weekend, I went with my host family to a mountain called Petersberg. It has a church on top of it, and from the road it looks like it would be impossible to get it there. The church was first built in 1137, but has been rebuilt a few times over the years.

From the top of the mountain there is a great view of the valley below, when it is sunny.
File:Petersberg Flintsbach-1.jpg

This Sunday, we went to a salt mine near Salzburg, called Salzbergwerk. The mine first started 500 years ago. Today, it still produces about 900,000 cubic metres of brine per year.

The tour that we went on starts with a train which takes you underground. We travel for a few minutes, and then get off in a big cave called the salt cathedral. To get down in to the bottom of the cave we have to go down a steep wooden slide that miners used to use to get to work. We follow the guide through tunnels, looking at some information as we go, until we get to an underground salt lake. The water is so clear that you can't see it if you aren't looking closely. The tour gets on a boat, and as we drive across the lake we watch a light show.
We walk along some more tunnels, learning about different mining technology, until we get back to the train. It was very interesting to see what a mine looked like 500 years ago, before Europeans had come to Australia.
Image result for Berchtesgaden

Now we have one week of holidays, and my family is taking me to Berlin. I am looking forward to this and I will write about it in my next blog.


My First Week in Germany

My first week in Germany has passed very quickly. When I first arrived I was very tired but after a few days I was used to the time zones.
On my first Sunday here, I went to the Oktoberfest in Munich with my family. There were so many people from all over the world. We went on some rides, and then went to look at the beer tents. They are full of people drinking beer, even early in the morning.

On Monday, it was my first day of school. I had to wake up at 6:00 am and run to catch the bus. After an hour of travelling by bus and train I arrived at school in Bad Aibling. It is very big and there are lots of people. At 1:50, school ends. The day feels so short and you can do things in the afternoon.

On Monday after school we drove a few kilometres to a mountain with a "Sommerrodelbahn". It is a long slide and you go down on little carts.
The view from the chairlift
I looked around Neubeuern where I am staying on Thursday. It is very cool. All the houses are old and there is a castle in the middle of town. We looked at the old market place in the middle of town, a canyon that is very close to the marketplace, the church and the second hand shop.

On Sunday, we went walking in the mountains near Austria. We climbed the Großer Traithen. It is one of the highest mountains in the area, at 1,852m. From the top we could look down and see Neubeuern.

I am really enjoying my time here and I am looking forward to more adventures!


Mein Fazit zu Melbourne

Die Zeit in Melbourne war sehr kurz.
Victoria Market
Am 03.03.2018 sind wir in Melbourne angekommen und sind direkt in die Jugendherberge gefahren und haben sofort die Zimmer bezogen. Wir sind alle um ca. 03:00 Uhr aufgewacht und haben nicht mehr schlafen können. (Der Jetlag machte sich wohl bemerkbar.) Um 06:00 Uhr habe ich und meine Zimmerkameraden beschlossen, in die Lobby zu gehen und dort zu warten.

 Eurica Tower
Um ca 09:00 sind wir zum Victoria Market gegangen und hatten Zeit, uns dort um zu sehen und Sachen zu kaufen. Danach sind wir den ganzen Tag durch Melbourne gegangen und haben uns alle Sehenswürdigkeiten angesehen, wie zum Beispiel das Gefängnis, in dem auch Ned Kelly eingesperrt war. Wir sind auch auf den Eureka Tower gefahren (was mein Highlight war).

Federation Square
Am 05.03.2018 haben wir unsere Sachen gepackt und sind mit dem Zug nach Bright gefahren.

Mein Fazit zu Melbourne ist, 
wenn wir mehr Zeit gehabt hätten, wäre es bestimmt schöner gewesen.

Ich möchte allen Lehrern vielmals danken, die uns diese atemberaubende Zeit ermöglicht haben.

Macht´s es guad Euer Maxi.



Mein Fazit zu Melbourne

Ich finde Melbourne ist eine atemberaubende Stadt mit vielen modernen Hochhäusern, aber auch die alten Häuser waren sehr sehenswert. Mir hat die Zeit in Melbourne mega gut gefallen ,weil wir vieles angeschaut haben, wie z.B. den Victoria Market, das alte Gefängnis von Melbourne oder den Eureka Tower, mein persönlicher Favorit. Die Aussicht war wundervoll.

Mein Fazit: Ich fand es sehr schön, aber ein wenig zu kurz.

Und ich wollte mich nochmal bedanken bei den zwei Lehrkräften, Herrn Lehrer und Frau Zender,  dass sie es  mir das ermöglicht haben, hier mit zu reisen. Natürlich möchte ich mich bei meiner Gastfamilie und meiner Familie bedanken.

Servus sagt euer Karl.