A week ago, we mentioned that a few of us went to Innsbruck to attend the Travel Bloggers Unite conference (read about it here). Upon arrival, we were greeted with gorgeous mountains, beautiful architecture and clear blue skies and from that moment our cameras were practically attached to our hands 24/7.

In Austria, we had only been to Vienna before, so this trip was a nice excuse to get to know more of this country. …starting with a bar (surprise!).

After meeting some of the other people attending the conference on some cold drinks at Moustache bar the first night, we launched in to our first day with a city tour, checking out the Imperial Palace, former home of some of the most powerful Austrian Royalties, unfortunately not including our favorite Austrian princess ever Empress Elisabeth of Austria Sissy.

The Hofburg Palace was full of paintings of ugly interesting looking relatives and a girlish dream of pink, that was one of the princess quaters. Looks just like my place, really.

Equipped with fashionable looking hats and sunglasses we were almost able to uncover the fact that we were tourists, but the cameras around our necks and the tour group of 20 next to us, may have given away our true identities.

However, we had a brilliant time snapping away at the gorgeous details on the pretty houses, the stuffed beavers, the silly aprons, the miniature lederhosen and the cuckoo clocks.

Sightseeing is good fun for a few hours, but definately not more fun than swimming in the lake! A short bus ride away from the city centre, we opted for improving our tan and cooling down inside the very charming Baggersee, where 25°C warm water awaits you in between stunning alpine scenery.

We love lakes, they make us happy. Here’s proof:

Being all smiley and relaxed were ideal conditions for launching into the first day of workshops and talks at the TBU conference. We touched on themes like how to organize a blog trip (that’s when PR companies send travel bloggers on free trips so they can report on what they did), some of the parallels between blogging and print media and a helpful bunch of workshops on PR and SEO questions and WordPress stuff, we never quite figured out.

But first and foremost, TBU was a great way of getting to know lots of other travel bloggers whose blogs we appreciated before and who we’re happy to now have met in person.

By the time it was saturday morning, I had a voice that could have easily perfomed crash test dummies songs, because I talked to so many interesting people. I feel I have learned a lot, talking to other bloggers, PRs and experts from the industry.

But all the networking, laking, drinking, sightseeing and giggling couldn’t keep us from doing what we always do – tracking down the best bars, shops and restaurants for you. Armed with cameras, the Tripwolf Innsbruck App, an ordinary map and a notebook, we checked all the recommendations we got from you and some of the locals we spoke to and came up with a whole bunch of stuff to do. The complete Travelettes guide to Innsbruck will be published in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.

Finally, after a day of hard day’s work and in the name of good research (Octoberfest is around the corner!) we felt it a good thing to try on a dirndl to take silly pictures in. Please forward all modeling requests to…. well, trying on dirndls is fun!

If you’re interested in attending a TBU conference, the next one will be in Umbria- Bella Italia – next March. We couldn’t have picked a better location as we all feel like it’s time to invest into some new italian heels.

Have you ever attended a bloggers conference? What did you learn? What would you have liked to learn? We’d love to hear your feedback!


This post was written by Nina Hüpen-Bestendonk, who has a funny name even for Germans; she is a wicked go-getter and creative freelance designer, photographer and blogger.

She has an eye for beauty and even finds it in ugly apartment blogs. Her weekly photo chronicle “My week in pictures” has already become a classic among urban Berliners. Find out more at smaracuja.de.