Some people are looking forward to their birthday, because that one day of the year, they will be the center of attention. I have this blog and can make myself important every day of the year. So, for my birthday I don’t have to sit at home and count the calls of happy-birthday-wishers who never call on any other day.
For me, birthday is travel time, preferably alone. Although traveling alone doesn’t necessarily mean spending the day alone. In a park in Tiraspol, two guitar-playing boys gave me a concert, and in Ganja, the local dictator accompanied my anniversary.
For epidemiological and environmental reasons, I won’t travel that far this time. From July 1st, I will be hiking the King Ludwig Trail in Bavaria. Although I am a strict anti-monarchist and would have joined the revolutions of 1848 and 1918, I find the trail quite alluring. It is only about 110 km, which I will certainly increase by intentional side trips and unintentional detours.
The route leads from Berg via Starnberg, Andechs monastery, Herrsching, Raisting, Diessen, Wessobrunn, Paterzell, Hohenpeissenberg, Rottenbuch, Wildsteig, the pilgrimage church of Wies, Steingaden, Halblech and Hohenschwangau to Füssen. In more general terms, I will set off south of Munich and walk towards the mountains that form the border with Austria.
The places probably don’t mean anything to you, so here are some photos to give you an idea:
At the end point of the hike, visible from afar like a lighthouse pulling me in the right direction, is Neuschwanstein Castle. And I bet you have seen that one before.
I’ll be walking for at least a week. If any of you live along the route and have a free couch, maybe you want to invite me in. And if that doesn’t work out, then I’ll sleep under trees and bathe in the river. There are worse things than falling into a soft meadow in the evening and waking up with the first rays of sunshine to the view of a royal castle.
Eichendorff’s Good-for-Nothing didn’t have any detailed plans either, but in the end, he could stay at the castle.
If someone would like a postcard from the walk or from Neuschwanstein Castle, let me know! And if/when I come back, there will of course be a detailed report with hiking advice, photos, hopefully interesting encounters and pages of explanations about the Kingdom of Bavaria and especially about King Ludwig II. Just so much already: Please don’t call him Mad King Ludwig.
Do some of you also go away for your birthday?