Morning dawned gray but not raining. It was cold too. We had debated renting bicycles but since we didn’t have helmets we nixed that. Plus it wasn’t the best day for it. That said, this is a great place to cycle. They have a path all the way around the lake, about 60 kilometers. So we decided to drive the wine roads in the area instead.
We had breakfast and headed out, driving north. There are numerous little towns. We circled the top of the lake and headed south. There is the biggest wind farm I’ve ever seen on this side of the lake. Must be in the hundreds of windmills. We stopped at Podersdorf which is the only town around the whole lake that sits actually beside the water. All the others have big marshes of wetlands between them and the lake. The wetlands are why they have so many birds around here. [pictures of Podersdorf and the lake]
Podersdorf was a cute, tidy town with a few shops and lots of boats to rent. The wind was really blowing off the lake and it was really cold. Even so, there were a lot of wind surfers out there in their wetsuits. We read that they have major competitions here. We didn’t hang around long.
Continuing our drive south we came to the Hungarian border. These little towns right near the border must have been scary places back in the day. The posts are all abandoned now. The bike path turned out to be better than the road at this point. We didn’t stop anywhere in Hungary but the architecture was markedly different. And definitely poorer. We noticed lots and lots of people waiting at bus stops. We mused about the fact in the communist days not many people would have had cars so the buses were important… and they still seem to be.
It was nearly lunch time so we headed up to Rust on the lake for lunch. Rust is a very nice little town with pretty architecture. The main square had lots of restaurants and hotels but was not in the least tacky. Just pretty. Here are some pictures.
We had decided to go to a heuriger for lunch. These are unique to the Bergenland and they signify that they are open for business by hanging an bough outside or over their door.
The inside of the heuriger is usually through a door and into an inside courtyard. The courtyard usually has a roof over part of it, and long tables with benches. They always have a lot of greenery and flowers so it is very inviting.
Our lunch was not that good. I was excited to see that they had spargel or the white asparagus of Germany on the menu. We are here just past the spargel season so this place was pushing it a bit and I hadn’t expected to find any. It was not that great of a version however.
We headed back to Mörbisch where we kicked back until around 7pm when we visited a vinoteke in town to sample a couple of wines. It was a cute place and quite a few people were there. We then headed over to the Sommer restaurant that we had visited the first night here. I had a nice pork tenderloin in pepper sauce and Luther had another schnitzel but this time he ordered the kleines – small – portion, and so did I!
It is not yet tourist season here. They said it picks up August through October. People like to be here for the grape harvest. There certainly is a sea of grapes here. This is the town of Rust seen from up in the vineyards.