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As spring is finally creeping into our local weather patterns – as I sweep snow off my walk again – it’s time to start thinking of summer. In Bavarian, there’s almost no better adventure than a Floßfahrt: literally a “river drive,” typically on the Isar river, just outside of Munich.

We did this a few years ago and it was a blast. There are a couple family tour companies that run these things – and they’re not inexpensive – but it is an adventure that won’t soon be forgotten as they’ve been doing them for hundreds of years. Even better, it’s all inclusive, which means your transportation, lunch and snacks, and most importantly, unlimited BEER is completely included.

Upon arrival at the embarkation point (ours was Wolfratshausen), there are huge logs that have been collected via trolly and workers busily attaching them together by spike to form a platform. They spike in a sitting platform with benches, and a little four corner tent that serves as the “restroom,” stock it full of musicians, kegs and snacks and away you go.

With a stop for lunch and a rush down a levee, it makes for a fine summer afternoon of Gemütlichkeit. If you ever have the chance to go, be sure to take advantage of it. Here are several companies offering bookings:

http://www.flossfahrt.de (German)
http://www.isarflossfahrt.net/ (English)
http://www.muenchen.de/freizeit/ausfluege/flossfahrt-isar.html (both languages)

Here’s a nice video to give you an idea of the levee plunge:

Some things just can’t be done in the U.S.A.