This morning's departure was set for 9:00. After about 1 1/2 hours we arrived at our destination - Lübbenau.
It was a picturesque town in the Spreewald, a beautiful forest area. Our itinerary said we would be going on a 3 hour barge journey. Since we hail from Pittsburgh we all pictured the coal barges that cruise the Ohio. We were in for a very pleasant surprise.
Of course there was libation on board and we enjoyed a sunny ride for a while, but then the rain came and we had to unstow the umbrellas and rain jackets.
The barge, powered by a punter, traveled through a series of canals past quaint homes and bucolic scenes. We were glad we weren't on the Titanic barge.
Getting to be lunch time, we arrived at the Cafe Venedig. It almost resembled a log cabin, but with a German flair. It is the oldest reed covered Gasthaus in Germany
After lunch (during which time it was sunny outside), we continued the barge trip. The Germans even have a sense of yard decorations with this life-like representation.
We got back to the harbor around 3:00 and then had some free time to explore the village and sample taste many of the different kinds of pickles for which Lübbenau is famous. There was a Schloß there that had been turned into a hotel. It was formerly owned by the Graf of Lynar.
There was also a Kunstmarkt in the town where we spied this carved replica of Noah's Ark.
For our third mode of transportation today we rode a little trolley back to the Cafe Venedig and tried to pull off a group picture that we had to split into 2.
We were greeted at the restaurant with a schnaaps and bread and salt, a traditional Eastern European welcome. Dinner was a buffet featuring roast pork, catfish, mixed vegetables in horseradish sauce, pancakes with bacon, a pickle and cucumber assortment, and some pudding and jello parfaits for dessert.
After dinner we enjoyed some traditional German songs and dancing to a DJ. We also had to say goodbye to Alex, out guide for the last three days. Willi presented him with a token of our appreciation.
Then it was a return to the coach by decorated and lighted barge.
The coach ride got us back to the hotel, tired, but remembering a wonderful day in the Spreewald.