Europe Day 3 (Paris – Salzburg – Hallstatt): Arc de Triomphe and Road Trip from Salzburg to Hallstatt

As we continue our trip, Jacky and I (especially I) dream to visit all the touristy places in Paris but because of time restriction, we have to limit our destinations. This morning, as everybody is still asleep or relaxing at the hotel, Jacky and I swing ourselves out to see the Arc de Triomphe. We search for the train stop and head our way there.

This arch sits right in the middle of the street so we have to take a picture from the sidewalk, where there are dozens of other tourists trying to find the perfect spot too. I wait with Jacky for this one good spot where a Chinese tourist is hogging. After some time which feels like a solid 15 minutes waiting, I am ready to take the spot and I have Jacky to prepare the phone camera. Right then, a car stop from out of nowhere blocking my view. Out a lady and a man just standing there and they are taking pictures in my long awaited spot. I have to wait for the car to go. Hmm.

Finally, I get what I want and we move on. We continue our journey to one of the hottest avenues in Paris – Franklin de Roosevelt. We did not actually plan to go to this place but on our subway ride, we heard the subway warnings in many languages about how we have to be careful if we take a stop there. So, we figure it must be a quite popular tourist spot. What a logical deduction right? Lol.

Anyway, when we get to Franklin de Roosevelt, we immediately go to Disney store and look around. We find this cute Jack Skellington mug and want to buy it but we undo the intention to because it’s gonna be too much trouble to carry a mug in our packed baggages.

I look around for a little while in Zara next store but I don’t buy anything either. Before I know it, it’s already time to get ready to catch our plane to Salzburg so we get an Uber to go back to our AirBnB.

We fly to Salzburg with Eurowings where their stewardesses are a bit older compared to airlines in Asia countries and oh boy do they look tired. The flight is okay and they give us a packet of snacks and drinks but they don’t taste good.

Once we reach Salzburg, we immediately go to the car rental booth (Sixt) and do the administration. The whole thing takes quite long and they charge just so much for so many things. For once, we tell them that there will be 2 drivers so they charge us for a second driver! We should not have told them about that. Renting a car just costs so much but it somehow weighs out the advantages too. It’s best when traveling with a lot of people (1 van for the 6 of us plus luggages). It’s easier to go because we are not bound to a fixed schedule. We can make stops whenever and wherever we want. Also, the experience to drive in a dark dead cold night in a freezing winter is something. We are now heading to Hallstatt where we have booked our beautiful hotel from AirBnB.

In the middle of nowhere, we are desperate to find an Asian restaurant. It has to be Asian because of.. reasons (parents). I try to search it in Google and find a place about 30 minutes from our location. We are on our way there where I just learn that that restaurant is not open at the moment and also that it is located in German and not Austria! Imagine what would happen if we have to cross countries just to eat and back to Austria again.

I find another Asian restaurant and this one is Vietnamese. This place is about another 30 minutes from where we are and I make sure that this one is open. The name is Uncle Van. They serve stir fried noodle of many choices and we get to choose our own sauce and toppings too. Not sure what to choose, we just ask for the recommended menu and have that. We take our time in that warm restaurant and use their restroom far too often lol. We chatted a bit with the chef and find that he has 2 kids but not married with his girlfriend. Jacky’s dad is startled to hear this.

On with our journey, in the middle of the night, others are asleep, Jacky and I find our way to our AirBnB hotel called Obertraun. We find difficulties finding this place as it is now already 10 pm ish, the whole place is so dark and there is no one outside because of course it’s freaking freezing. After a while, we find some kind of bar and we go inside to ask people where this Obertraun resort is. They give us directions and we follow the way.

The whole complex is supposedly huge and mesmerizing but it is very very dark now and we just want to snuggle into our warm beds and have some rest. When we find the front lobby, which light is also off, we quickly find another way at the back where their restaurant is still open. We go inside and see some people drinking beer and one bartender behind the bar. We ask him for the receptionist and he says that there’s none.

We follow him back to the front lobby and he gives us our keys, a map and a welcome letter. Apparently, this is not like a usual hotel but it is a bungalow resort so we have to find our bungalow in the complex from the map and drive there. I have to say over and over again just to remind everyone that it is very very dark in here. We park the van and unload the luggages into the house, the surprisingly amazing house.

The house has a kitchen, a sauna room, a living room, 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms upstairs. It is absolutely pretty and warm too. We unpack just for our pajamas and get ready for our beauty sleep.

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