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clearer sound. Like most Innsbruck natives – especially because her Innsbruck roots go back 300 years – she is enthusiastic about the city: its history as a centre of European culture during the Hapsburg Dynasty; the mountains she’s hiked and skied since she was three; and, of course, her flock of children and grandchildren. “I’ve been married for 52 years and my husband has never seen me sick,” she boasted. “It’s because I always hike and bike and ski. That’s what you do in Innsbruck. It keeps us healthy.”
A traditional Tyrolean band entertains diners at a hilltop café above Innsbruck.
9 Day West Coast to California Tour Photos: Bob Cooper
Highlights: Portland, Oregon Coast, California Redwoods, Wine Country & San Francisco Departs Victoria Aug 18 $3099 per person double including all tax, accommodations, transport, many meals & knowledgeable guide.
Our companion the next day in the Stubai region, Michael Grstrein, was younger and taller, but just as energetic. He first took us on an 8km hike in the foothills, a one-percent glimpse of the 800km of trails that lace the Stubai region. Public access is allowed in all forests, even on private land. The trails are a mix of dirt, gravel and grass trails, lined by thistles and berry bushes, through meadows and groves of long-needled larch trees, and past wildflowers and hay-drying huts. Cows wandered freely across the path, their clanging cowbells offering auditory amusement, but more practically, allowing their owners to easily locate them. A hawk reconnoitered overhead. The trail ended at Serles Mountain, where a traditional Tyrolean band (trumpets, trombone, tuba, accordion and harp) entertained a jovial crowd of mountaintop café visitors. We feasted on nuddelsuppe and the national dessert, apple strudel.
Early Booking Discount of up to $250 available when booked by May 13.
Other Upcoming Deluxe Guided Tours: June 6: Magical Maritimes 10 day $3,199 +GST Only 3 Seats Left
Sept 19: Autumn in Quebec & Ontario 10 day $3,499 +GST $250 per person Early Booking Discounts are still available
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