We had fantastic views of the valley from our van and the next morning, we woke up to sunshine and cow bells ringing on the hills nearby. The night before was quite cool, especially once the sun disappeared behind the hills – it was probably around 11 degrees at night.
We got to the museum around 9:45 am and I managed to ask for 2 tickets in German and surprisingly, the lady at the counter understood my mangled German. She did speak English quite well (we’ve noticed both in Switzerland and Germany that they say “a little bit only” when you ask them if they speak English and they can usually carry on a decent conversation). She handed us the English self-guided tour booklet and we were on our way. The clock museum in Furtwangen is not just about cuckoo clocks – in fact, most of the museum is dedicated to the evolution of clocks from the sundial days. The most amazing clocks (the ones that really stuck out) were: the astronomical one, giraffomania, cuckoo clocks of course and also the huge pendulum clocks. I also really liked the fancy pocket watches, especially one that was enclosed in a case the shape of a violin.
We ended up reading about only half of the text in our guide because we just couldn’t absorb all the information. Some of the information was also quite technical (the museum is attached to the Technical University of Clock Making). We had a nice time wandering around the museum and on the way out, I asked the nice lady at the reception if she had any recommendations on a place to sit down for a café and some cake – I had to try Black Forest, a specialty of the region.
We sat down in this quaint tea shop where there were a lot of locals having their late morning tea. We ordered a piece of black forest cake each and a coffee with milk. The cake was scrumptious and Megs who doesn’t normally like black forest, didn’t want to share any of her piece.
The tea room was decorated with old tea pots and china and it was the perfect stop after a museum visit. Having enjoyed our cake and coffee, we headed into Switzerland.
It was our first day in Germany and we were headed for the Black Forest region, having crossed the border from France. We had planned on checking out the Cuckoo Clock Museum in Furtwangen but we arrived too late in the afternoon to do it justice. Instead, we stopped by the TI and I asked them "Sprechen zie English?" in my finest German accent. Luckily, the lady at the TI replied with “Yes, I speak a little bit”. We asked her about camping nearby and she pointed us in the direction of a tiny village of Lilach that didn't show any camping on our Michelin maps. I’m glad we followed her advice because it was a beautiful campsite.