Friday, July 13, 2007

LI - Schaan/Vaduz

I was up early, but it was still a 20 minute walk to the Innsbruck station and then several hours ride to Feldkirch. From there, I caught a bus to Schaan, then walked the rest of the way by the riverside. I’m not sure how, but I found the place on the first try… thank you, low resolution Google Earth printout!

The walk along the east band of the Rhein is beautiful – particularly looking west toward Switzerland. On the other hand, Liechtenstein is a lot like the USA: a lot of car-oriented sprawl, but with unscathed mountains nearby. Unfortunately I ran out of time to hike about the mountains, though I did get a good dose of Vaduz. Basically, the town center is nothing but a series of souvenir shops. I did, however, enjoy the nearby residential Mitteldorfstrasse – which reportedly resembles what the rest of Vaduz used to look like.

The country has the most inconvenient business hours: most cafes only serve food during ~2 hour blocks at lunch and dinner, and my hostel is closed from 10:00 to 17:00. Considering that hikers and extreme sports enthusiast rarely stick to “normal” schedules – and seeing as these types of people are the country’s key attraction – I find it a bit odd that tourist-oriented businesses would act this way. I’d expect those hours in Italy… but in a Germanic country?!

A local concert stage is undergoing sound tests. …Why are they testing with American Country music?

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