Blogs from Slovakia, Europe - page 10

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Europe » Slovakia » Trencín Region » Trencín August 17th 2011

We headed South. Ish. Dodging an a unmarked police bike – a black R1 cruising up and down the highway, trying to tempt young folk into competing, then giving them a ticket, crappier roads and crappier driving. The Tatras loomed majestically – I'm not sure if you can loom majestically, but there they were, looming away, and there was a definite sense of majesty, so there you go. The craggy peaks were covered in cloud, on the road to Poprad. The foreground littered with rolling hills of barley and hops and little white villages. It looked like a beer ad. We rolled into the campsite at Trencin. The lady was cheerful and spoke zero English, but we got by with single German words. It's not real hard to say 1 tent and 2 people. When Klaire ... read more
Camp on the island at Trecin
View from the tent
Football Stadium lights

Europe » Slovakia » Bratislava Region » Bratislava » Old Town August 17th 2011

August 16-17-Our flight left syracuse at 4pm and we headed for Boston. there was nothing spectacular about the flight. once in Boston, we grabbed a bite to eat and made our way to the gate. The international terminal in Boston is quite posh and I enjoyed the access to a plug to charge my "Electronic toys" as my mom would call them. We boarded our next flight to Munich on Lufthansa airlines. The plane was very nice and included a "downstairs" area that was primarily for restrooms. Each of our seats had our own TV, and I was tempted to watch a movie in German just to prepare myself. The stewardesses were generally nice, except the one who was stationed to our area... she was very short with us. I have to say the service was ... read more

Europe » Slovakia » Zilina Region » Liptovský Mikulás July 27th 2011

After a great time in Bratislava it was time to once again pack the car and head off to our next destination, a one night stop in a small village near Liptovsky Mikuláš. Today’s trip should take us through some very scenic and sometimes interesting countryside. Our first stop was the very large Tesco Extra Hypermarket for some lunch supplies. Tesco seems to have a huge presence in this part of the world and there are quite a number of reasonably new premises. To get to our intended route we needed to retrace our steps along the 30 kilometres of concrete road. One day someone is going to realise this road is not good and needs instant replacement. But then again the Ministry of Roads probably have shares in the suspension and shock absorber industry. There ... read more
Banska Bystrica
Castle near Banska Bystrica
View from our chalet balcony, Demanovska

Europe » Slovakia » Bratislava Region » Bratislava » Old Town July 26th 2011

On advice from our friendly hotel receptionist, we set out this morning to take the tram into the city to explore Bratislava’s old town. Tram tickets could be purchased from a machine at the next tram stop but one, a mere 5 minutes walk away. The walk over, we realised there was no ticket machine at the tram stop, so approached a young man who luckily spoke some English. He was unsure where we might find a ticket machine, but suggested asking at the petrol station across the road. He then insisted on taking us over and asking the attendant on our behalf (in Slovakian). The gist of the response was that vandals ruin the machines at some tram stops so they are located away from the stops, in this case the lady thought we should ... read more
St Michael's Gate
The National Theatre
The very happy couple

Europe » Slovakia » Bratislava Region » Bratislava July 25th 2011

We had our fingers crossed for a fine day today but when the curtains were drawn back in our hotel room we were greeted with rain again. We hope our lasting impressions of Budapest are not all gloomy. These few days of our trip have been the wettest we have had over a sustained period of time. Had we seen more of the sun we might have felt differently. We leave with memories of wonderful art work, stately buildings along Andrassy ut, the pedestrian friendly streets in the city centre and the views from Buda overlooking the city. As we pack the car ready to depart for Bratislava we can hear the words of those who have travelled this way before us saying, “Why Bratislava, there is nothing there?” With a two night stay we are ... read more
Leaving Budapest in the rain

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Europe » Slovakia » Presov Region » High Tatras » Strbské Pleso July 15th 2011

Happily the bus from Zakopane, Poland to Poprad, Slovakia showed up on time but there was a huge traffic jam on the way to the border as apparently the road to the border is shared with one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Zakopane area, the lake Morskie Oko. The traffic jam wasn't stop and go; it was more like stop and stop. Luckily the bus passed the jammed part of the road and it delivered me at Poprad Aquacity water park, and the first thing I did after checking into my hotel was head back to the water park. This isn't really a Kapolei-style water park. It doesn't have nearly as many different types of attractions and the water slides are lame. It's more about relaxation and there are a number of thermal ... read more
more hiking
Strbske Pleso
Aquacity Poprad

Europe » Slovakia » Bratislava Region » Bratislava » Old Town July 3rd 2011

I forgot that I had taken some snaps on the small camera of the trip down the Donau/Danube on that Twin City Liner cat or whatever it is called. Somewhat like my pictures of the Rhine last year if you remember in terms of the odd riverside rocky castle etc. And even though I got to Bratislava tp spend two nights there, with the view to getting around to see a bit, this did not really prove the case in the end. Woke up and it was raining and as I could look down on the roof 3 floors below I could tell how wet it was. So decided at almost 4pm (rain can ruin the best of holidays) that best thing to do was stay dry and go to the Slovakian National Gallery next door. ... read more
Danube passing a riverboat and castle
the cruiser Sofia
back deck of riverboat

Europe » Slovakia » Bratislava Region » Bratislava June 29th 2011

I came to Bratislava with uncharacteristically low expectations: normally I am excited at the prospect of visiting any new city, but it was hard to retain any enthusiasm for the Slovakian capital. Every single person I'd met who had been here told me that it was not worth visiting, especially not for longer than a day; many a traveller has a tale of how they regret wasting a weekend in this city. Nonetheless I felt it unjustifiable to go straight from Budapest to Vienna when a whole country lay between. I decided to give Slovakia's capital one night to prove her naysayers wrong. The bus journey from Budapest to Bratislava was only three hours long, and it was not long at all after crossing the border that we reached the outskirts of the city. It was ... read more

Europe » Slovakia » Bratislava Region » Bratislava June 15th 2011

Celebrating Ake's 40th birthday In March this year Ake turned 40. Since Ake isn't too happy about celebrating things in general and birthdays in particular Ake decided to go abroad on his 40th birthday. Even though Ake doesn't enjoy traditional celebrations he still thinks that turning 40 is a bit special and because of this he wanted to do something special on this day. This "something special" was to run Bratislava Half Marathon. We spent two days in Bratislava. On Saturday we did traditional sightseeing and on Sunday we ran the race. Bratislava looks much like many other cities in central Europe. Many cities in central Europe have beautiful stone houses from the 19th or early 20th century and so does Bratislava. Many cities in central Europe have old churches and so does Bratislava. Many cities ... read more
House
House
Door to a house

Europe » Slovakia » Bratislava Region » Bratislava » Old Town June 15th 2011

To many American ears the words Bratislava, Slovakia sound none too inviting and possibly even harsh. Perhaps it is the word 'brat' which has such negative connotations to it as in " Whew! I'm glad that little brat isn't MY kid". Or maybe it is the 'slov' in Slovakia that sounds, well, trampy or slovenly. On the day we left Budapest on a 10 hour trek by bus to Prague I didn't know what to expect. Only the night before I had learned we would be stopping in Bratislava for lunch. Great, I thought, that adds another country to the already packed list for this trip. Slovakia is small, about the size of W. Virginia. with a population of 5.4 million. Most of it is mountainous (the Tatras) except for the area around the Danube which ... read more




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