If you ever have a chance to ride on trains in Europe, take it! So comfortable, so fast, so fun!
We boarded in Zürich. We didn’t realize that the tickets we purchased were separate from the reservations (we didn’t purchase). And by we I mean I, since I was the one who’d purchased them! Anyhow, the first place we sat was had four seats around a table. Right after we hefted Jenni’s giant suitcase into the over head storage, another couple boarded and told us we were sitting in their seats. They had reserved them, but the reservation system was currently down and not displaying “reserved” above the seats. We moved to another car and found another table with seats. When the conductor came through to check our tickets, we asked if we could reserve some seats. He said no. We asked if he could tell us where to sit that wasn’t reserved. He said no. We stayed where we were and decided we’d move if someone else asked us.
I went to check out the dining car. It was really cute with some booths and a little lunch counter.
I ordered water with gas and sat at a booth to take a few more pictures.
When I returned to our area, Jenni and Delaney had nabbed the window seats at our table, so I took pictures of them taking pictures.
At lunch, an old lady at the table across from us showed us the danger of ordering soup on a train when we made a sudden stop and all of their dishes slid off the table and on to her lap.
The conductor came back and helped her file a complaint. Jenni captured a picture, and she wasn’t subtle!
We ordered sandwiches. I got the ham and cheese, Jen and Delaney got salami and pickles. My sandwich was a lot better, which I found out after I offered to trade half with Delaney. I ordered a slice of the cake of the day to make up for it.
After we left Innsbruck, fog had built up and it was much harder to see. We passed through Salzburg just before dusk, but we were on the wrong side of the train to see much of the city.
From Salzburg to Vienna the fog increased and it got really, really dark. Thankfully, I had mapped our entire transportation plan and we knew exactly how to get to the Hilton.
Unfortunately, my map was wrong. We emerged from the subway and into the rain on a shadowy street with few street signs. An old woman walking by stopped and asked us if we needed help. We told her we were trying to find the Hilton. She pulled her son over and told him to help us. He looked at our map and said “where did you get this, it’s quite a long walk from here!” He gave us directions that involved getting back on the subway, transferring from the green line to the purple line and emerging steps from the door to the Hilton. His wife passed us a subway map and wished us luck. These Viennese people are simply charming!
His directions were flawless and we found the Hilton with plenty of time to drop our bags in our upgraded rooms, hit the executive lounge for a couple of glasses of wine, and make it to the Christmas market!