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The House of 1000 Clocks

After a few days in France, we were ready to try our big day-trip to the Black Forest. What looked on a map like just a little hop and skip over the border to Germany, was actually a 3 hour drive one way.


But we were determined to see the Black Forest. Ok, I was determined to see the Black Forest.

We couldn't afford accommodation in Germany close by, so our three hour drive from La Bresse in France was the next best thing.

It is always fascinating to drive into another country, and it was especially interesting to go from France to Germany. We crossed an invisible border, and suddenly things were different all around. The landscape, the architecture, the language. We were in Germany again. Things got a lot more tidy and orderly, the roads were all in excellent condition, and those adorable Bavarian style houses were the norm!

Our destination was the coolest looking cuckoo clock store that I could find online - The House of 1000 clocks! To get there, we parked at the top of a mountain and walked down into the forest to see the famous Triberg waterfall. I never, never got sick of the forests in Germany and Austria. I don't particularly like bush walking, but these forests lit my imagination on fire. They just felt so old and mystical, like it would be totally natural for a unicorn to walk on by.

This was our first taste of the 'Black Forest' from the fairy-tales of our youth.

And the taste....was peanutty.

My kids had the exciting experience of viewing and feeding some squirrels. Other tourists had purchased some peanuts to feed the local squirrels, but my kids seemed to think that the peanuts they found along the way were a handy free snack!

Gawk at the squirrels...

Pick up some free munchies....

With the kids bellies a bit fuller, we moved on to the waterfall. It was nice. It's not like I was blown away or anything, probably the squirrels and the peanuts were more exciting, but it was nice. Ross and I were aware that the whole walk had been downhill. Hhmmm. The way back would certainly be interesting...

Although it was peak tourist season, it wasn't too crazy crowded. We emerged from the forest into the adorable town of Triberg. Right smack in the centre of the Black Forest, Triberg is famous for cuckoo clocks, wood carvings and ham.

First stop - The House of 1000 Clocks!!! This place has a giant cuckoo that moves and plays music outside, and true to it's name, there are more than 1000 clocks.

Right inside the door is possibly one of the biggest cuckoo clocks in the world! Every clock was so beautifully made.

Which of course made us panic a little....over a 1000 gorgeous expensive handmade traditional clocks that we had to protect from our kids!!!

My traveling mantra became; "Look with your eyes, NOT with your hands" I said this a lot, and tried to reinforce it constantly, with varying degrees of success. But this time, I knew that the power of moving, dancing little wooden people and animals within easy reach might just be too hard for any kid to resist!

But the sales ladies were very kind and they were happy and willing to let us chose any clock to watch dance and cuckoo. The kids were able to point to a clock they liked, and the ladies would move the hour hand back for them so that they could watch. It was so much fun to see all the different ones.