To Germany and to the Netherlands and then back to the UK.
Friday 27 June 1986 - Sunday 6 July 1986
Friday - 27 June - Back into Germany and drove to Heidelberg with food shopping in Karlsruhe on way there. Traditional Heidelberg boot party after dinner.
Saturday 28 June - Not well at all but not due to the beer from the night before. I was sick all night so did not join tour of city and so I stayed on bus for a sleep. We then drove to Bingen in order to catch ferry to Bacharach. Great scenery as we cruised up the Rhine. From there we to Köln (Cologne). Wandered around the cathedral, rebuilt after WWII. Still not well so went to bed straight after dinner.
A castle on the Rhine.
Sunday 29 June - A long drive from Köln to Berlin, crossing the East German border twice (once from West Germany into East Germany and then into West Berlin). Not much to see on drive, countryside flat and boring. We arrived at the camp site in time to watch World Cup Final between Germany and Argentina (Germany 2 Argentina 3).
Monday 30 June - Visited Checkpoint Charlie. Did not cross into East Berlin as there is not much to see and there was a compulsory money change that had to be spent there. We visited the Wall Museum, very interesting. Wandered shops etc. A quiet evening in camp.
The wall and no man's land.
The end of the British Sector.
Tuesday 1 July - We visited the 1936 Olympic Stadium. Interesting having a walk around. Next stop was Charlottenburg Palace. Covered in scaffolding as usual. Next was the Victory Column (the 1864 Second Schleswig War against Denmark, the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 and the Franco-Prussian War of 1871). We then drove to Brandenburg Gate but were not allowed to stop as it is in the Soviet zone. Next was the Reichstag Museum. This has a very good history of Germany from 1815 to modern times. Rest of afternoon free in city. Quiet evening in camp.
Berlin's Olympic Stadium.
The Soviet War Memorial.
The Victory Column.
Wednesday 2 July - Drove from Berlin to Amsterdam. Arrived later in the afternoon. Another quiet evening.
Thursday 3 July - A day of sightseeing in Amsterdam, starting with Heineken factory. A canal cruise was followed by van Moppe's diamond factory. After lunch we went to Anne Frank's house. The busy day continued with a trip out to Volendam with a cheese making demonstration on the way. Official group photo. Grim. Excellent Indonesian meal back in Amsterdam.
The canal cruise.
The smallest house in the city.
Anne Frank's house.
The clog maker.
The obligatory group photo.
Top row (L-R): Carl, John, Katrina, Trevor.
Middle row (L-R): Jon, Steve, Glynn, David.
Front row (L-R): Justin (tour leader), Lisa, Helen (in front), Jacqui, Mark (driver), Ken.
Friday 4 July - A free day in city. Visited a torture museum. Grisly or what! Evening in red light district.
Saturday 5 July - Drove from Amsterdam to Brugge in Belgium. The afternoon was spent cleaning the bus from top to bottom and every cupboard in between. Camped at Zeebrugge docks.
Sunday 6 July - An early morning ferry from Zeebrugge to Dover. Caught the transfer bus from Dover to London and was deposited back at the hotel mid afternoon. The end.
Summary - As my first major trip away it was very interesting. We visited some great places. I think my favourite was Rome, Barcelona and Athens. The group was a mixed bunch. A couple of people were really nice, a couple quite strange and one complete arsehole. He spent the entire trip causing trouble and was very nearly thrown off the truck somewhere in Yugoslavia.
My own personal trip was spoiled by not having enough money for food, drinks and activities. I was always having to watch the pennies (and francs, pesetas, lira, drachmas, lira again, dinar, schillings, a different sort of franc, marks and guilders - this being all pre euro days). However, I saw a lot, took lots of piccies, drank a lot and generally had a good time..