Category Archives: Travels

Hagenbeck Zoo 2019

We have sunshine here in North Germany again! What felt like ages with only constant rain (three weeks or so) we have no a period of good weather once again so we took the kids to Hagenbeck Zoo. Last time we had been there was back in 2014 when Nathan was just two months old and we loved it. We planned each summer to go there but well, nothing happened as always got in the way. Sadly we could not take Haruki the Shiba with us as dogs are not allowed there. At first I was confused why it would be forbidden till I realized again that the entire park is filled with small animals running around. You got the basic chickens and peacocks everywhere but also other animals such as Maras and Capybaras. Dogs would be no good in such surrounding.

Someone with a long neck

As I had mentioned back in 2014 there are barely any “cage bars” in the way as most enclosures are surrounded by a moat or something similar to prevent animals to escape. Especially nice was the Penguin Area as those little feathered bros can just jump out of their enclosure when they feel like it. Due to this I got some nice close-up picture of few of them just standing right next to the people. One guy who tried a selfie with one got his hairs searched for food by one penguin. So far the Hagenbeck Zoo is my favorite one as it is just such a nice place. Everything is clean; the whole park is really like a park full of old trees and fields. It just feels so relaxing to be there.

Nathalie with Wapiti Antlers

Wherever you are you have some animals nearby to watch / some maras or capybaras come to you to check out the situation for food. Of course you are not allowed to feed the animals there with some exceptions. At the entrance you can buy a bag full of fresh vegetables and fruits to feed for example the Asian Elephants. Those big ones are pretty much the stars in the zoo as they reach with their trunk over the moat to pick up the food from your hand. But there is also staff watching that you do not sneak in any wrong food. MIL had the idea to give the elephants some sweet bread but we were able to stop her.

Hello there

In case you have some holidays planned in North Germany and enough time I really recommend visiting Hagenbeck Zoo. Additionally to the Zoo they have a Tropical Aquarium area, however it requires its own entrance ticket. We did not visit it so far as the Zoo itself was already plenty enough for us and we had to get home in time for Haruki, don’t want to leave him alone for the whole day either. The aquarium area has of course a lot of fishes and whatnot all but also other animals such as ring-tailed lemurs (King Julien) running around freely and many birds.

 

What is your favorite Zoo?

Be sure to follow me also on Facebook and on Twitter as I will post there occasionally pictures which do not find their way into my blog posts. Furthermore there is also my Instagram account in which from time to time some pictures and short videos might pop up.

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Nothing New In Germany

This summer I have not been that forthcoming with crazy stuff from my family. Basically nothing much happened except that worrisome things I wrote about in the past two blog posts. By now all the stress from China has been become just an annoying background noise and we have been only focusing on work and the kids. My dear Chinese mother-in-law is still here in Germany but will leave back to China in the end of August.

Besides the annoying stuff from China we had to manage for three weeks through the kindergarten holidays and thus having both kids with us all day long. For those holidays we had some nice things planned such as trips to the beaches here, traveling on weekends to some cities in the area and such but oh boy, of course the weather had to change to the worse during those three weeks and we had just rain every single day. We only managed to visit Legoland in Billund again and we had semi-good weather with just some minor showers in between. After those holidays were over we managed also a trip to Sankt Peter-Ording here in North Germany where a fantastic beach is located. I must say we had really bad luck with the weather this summer as we only had nice temperature and sunshine on the days we were neck-deep with work.

Now the holidays are over already for a few weeks and something new started for us as Nathalie started kindergarten this week! Little Nathalie aka the Thundergoat can be a difficult little monster so I prepared for the worst when going with her to kindergarten. But for some unknown reason she is a completely different person there. The staff there is super happy with her, she never cries, does whatever they tell her to and is just a little sunshine there. I already told the staff that this little girl they describe can’t be my daughter.

At home we have the usual madness with MIL as describe in the previous post so nothing new from that front. On a personal note I got even nerdier as I picked up during spring again Warhammer 40K after near 20 years away from it. Not writing now anything specific about it but I will have eventually a geek post about my newfound hobby in the upcoming weeks. For now I hope we have some luck in the next weeks with the weather so we can go to Hamburg Zoo again as the last visit there dates back to 2014 when Nathan was just 9 weeks old! This also somehow reminds me that I need to continue editing the last holiday “movie” as I still have tons of material to go through.

 

How has been the weather for you this summer?

Be sure to follow me also on Facebook and on Twitter as I will post there occasionally pictures which do not find their way into my blog posts. Furthermore there is also my Instagram account in which from time to time some pictures and short videos might pop up.

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Delightful Disneyland

One of the reasons I could convince my wife to visit Hong Kong was the prospect of spending a day at Disneyland. For all the past years we had plans of visiting a Disneyland. Here in Europe we got Disneyland Paris but the costs of travelling there and spending just two days pretty much equals the flight tickets for the entire family to Japan! The thought of visiting Disneyland here popped up from time to time but due to our penny-pinching nature those ideas were quickly quenched. Last year we travelled to Japan so the idea of Disneyland came up again but we decided against it as Nathalie was just way too young to enjoy it and have some faint memories of it later. This year however we planned for a day at Hong Kong Disneyland for a very long time. My wife especially planned our trip so well that she had decided on a specific day to go there based on our travel plans within Hong Kong and most importantly on the number of average visitor of the theme park. All those plans were for naught as she did not consider one factor: The Weather!

A grey sky but no rain for now

While we had pretty stable weather during our first days with some sunshine all rainy hell broke loose after our trip to Lamma Island. It was not just some drizzle but more like a constant water fall flooding the streets.  The day of our planned visit to Disneyland came and was washed away by the rains. In fact we already gave up on visiting the theme park and planned for some other trip to Hong Kong the following year or so. However the kids were so sad about not being able to go to Disneyland, especially because my wife hyped them up for it with videos of the park and Disney Movies for several weeks prior to our holidays that we decided to take the risk of being drowned in the rain and just went there on our fourth day in Hong Kong.

Just some mist, no real rain yet

We took the metro and as soon as the train left the safe underground tunnels we were surrounded by rain. However we were prepared with umbrellas, raincoats and rain boots for the kids. But then we got really lucky as the rain stopped as soon as we arrived at Disneyland and no drop fell down from the clouds until the evening. I mean we had so bad luck in the past six months that we could not fathom something lucky as that happening to us at all anymore. Arriving at the Disneyland station felt so strange as you are immediately “transferred” into some strange and happy fantasy world. Everywhere you go you have some calming background music, the park is designed that you forget the outside world and you really feel like that you stepped into some other place entirely disconnected from the outside. Well that is at least how I felt. To make matters even better was the fact that there were really few people visiting as the weather report had forecast heavy rainstorms for the entire day. This meant for us that we never had to wait more than five minutes for any ride.

I will never ever go on a rollercoaster in the dark again

The kids loved everything there and wanted to go on every single amusement ride. Needless to say that Nathalie was more than once disappointed as she was just to small for the rollercoasters and few other rides. Nathan however was able to go on every ride except one in Toy Story Land where there height requirement was minimum 120cm were he fell short by a few centimeters. All prior research and planning of my wife for this visit came in handy as we arrived at each ride at the right time in order to have short waiting times, not missing any important parade and to go to the best possible restaurant for our requirements. The food was plenty and well enough for a theme park. Nothing extraordinary but on a sad note it was one of the best food we had during our trip to Hong Kong. I know food is not everything went travelling but we had our disappointments with restaurants during our stay.

Flights of Fantasy

One of the main parts was the Flights of Fantasy Parade were pretty much every visitor came to the main road to watch. Towards the end the actors/ artists/ performers (what is the right term here?) invited some kids from the audience to dance and play with them. Our little Nathan was one of them and just beamed all the time while Nathalie screamed like a demon as she didn’t like to be apart from her brother (or just angry for not being invited, you never know with her). One of the interesting parts of this parade was in fact a person in the audience, an elderly woman in a wheelchair who apparently had the time of her life dancing and singing that even some of the performers came to her to dance. In the evening just when to “We love Mickey” Projection show ended the rain started and we quickly hurried back to the train station. By the time we arrived again in Mong Kok the rain had transformed into a proper storm and just walking from the station to our apartment left us soaking wet even with umbrellas and raincoats. For this day I have to say that we really got lucky and I hope the kids will have fond memories of it.

Have you visited a Disneyland?

Be sure to follow me also on Facebook and on Twitter as I will post there occasionally pictures which do not find their way into my blog posts. Furthermore there is also my Instagram account in which from time to time some pictures and short videos might pop up.

https://www.facebook.com/CrazyChineseFamily

https://twitter.com/CraChineseFam

https://www.instagram.com/Crazychinesefamily