Page 6 of Mediterranean Dreams Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Bosnia & Herzegovina » East » Sarajevo September 1st 2014

The next day was a long journey day to Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Along the way, which I didn't know until Phil and Brit told me, we passed Srebenica, a small Bosnian town betrayed during the war and the site of a massive geonocide af the hands of the Serbian army. We asked stop there, but we were denied citing a pressing schedule. In Sarajevo, we were greeted at our Pension for 3 nights, and later we greeted by our local Sarajevo guide Muhamed. Muhamed was a very warm and welcoming guide who was very enthusiastic about his city. As a boy of 10 when the 3 and a half year seige of Sarajevo started, he vividly recounted what it was like to live in hiding from snipers who would shoot and wound ... read more
Shopping in old town Sarajevo
Ariel veiw of Sarajevo
Bosnian coffee

Europe » Serbia August 29th 2014

We were then in Novi Sad - a city in northern Serbia. As part of the intrepid itinerary, we visited a honey bee museum and (another) winery. We preferred this winery to the last - smaller, more intimate and more tastings! We also got to sample the local honey and a local honey-infused rakija (spirit). I bought a bottle to take home as a gift, and like the last winery, most people bought a bottle to share along the trip. The next day, after a big walk to the old fortress, we were off to the capital Belgrade by train. I don't know what it is, maybe flashbacks of news reports coming back to me, but this city name had stuck in my mind so I really didn't know what to expect. It was a tired, ... read more
Serbian train
Bohemian quarter Belgrade
Me and Bill soaking up our first day in Belgrade

Europe » Croatia » Slavonia August 27th 2014

We met our Intrepid group of travellers. There were 9 other people aside from us, and our leader who was Croatian. The group was a good mix of nationalities - Australians, Brits, Americans and a New Zealander. One of the British travellers was our good friend Alan from Oxford - 87 years young and fighting fit. We met Alan on our 2008 Intrepid Middle Eastern Adventure - 4 weeks through Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Turkey. We met Alan again in 2009 in Budapest and again in 2011 at his home of Oxford, and he also came to visit us in Brisbane later that year. After a welcome dinner with our group and then drinks at a funky open air multi-storeybar, we went back to the hotel to rest for a big day ahead of exploring Budapest. ... read more
Osijek old town
Nice Croatian beer
Me and Bill at his birthday dinner

Europe » Hungary » Central Hungary » Budapest August 19th 2014

After over 24 hours of flying, Bill and I landed in Vienna. Our plan was to spend 2 nights and one day in Vienna, and then to continue onto Eger, Hungary, via Budapest. We had been to Vienna previously (2009) so we didn't have to rush around doing the touristy things as we had done most of them. We walked around a lot, shopped, and stopped for a bite to eat (and a beer!) at an open air food market area that was part of tne Vienna film festival. The next day we caught an early train to Budapest. Like Austria, we had been to Hungary (Budapest and Eger) in 2009. Budapest's Keleti train station is just as I remembered it - old communist era feel to it, air thick with cigarette smoke (that smell still ... read more

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome October 24th 2012

Well, our trip has now ended L We are now in the hotel, getting ready for our looong trek home back to Australia. Today we went to the Castel Sant’Angelo, and old castle near the Vatican. It was so awesome, and greater by the fact it was an expensive sight, so our Roma pass really paid off with the Colosseum and transport as well. We walked around the old fortress and took many panoramic photos of Roma. Afterward, we had a very lovely lunch (yes pasta) which was great for our last lunch in Italy. Well, what to say about our trip. Sooo happy we did Lebanon we had the opportunity – with the terrible events that have unfolded with the bombing in Achrafiye (near where we were staying) last week and now secretarian violence…I feel ... read more

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome October 23rd 2012

Rome The next day (Sunday) we said goodbye to our lovely B&B (Le Seggiole for those thinking of going to Florence!) and went on the short train journey to Rome. Our last stop. We arrived at our B&B near the Colesseum after a rather exy taxi ride (our sits were not with us that day). None the less, we got here, relaxed and headed through the park to the outskirts of the Colesseum. The next day (yesterday) we went to the Colesseum. A colossal amphitheatre where games and the like were played out in roman times. We have seen many many roman and Greek ruins on our travels in the Middle East and southern Europe, but this too also lived up the hype. Surprisingly, it wasn’t overrun by tourists. It was truly magnificent. Afterward ... read more

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence October 23rd 2012

Florence We arrived in Florence on another overcast day. We found ourselves at our B&B ‘Le Seggiole’ (take note) the BEST B&B ever. The owner, Ulrike (Swede married to an Italian) really was the loveliest and gracious host gave us an in-depth guide to Florence and Tuscany’s surrounds. She was very lovely, and all of the staff as well. After check-in, we headed to the Piazza where we got stuck in a massive downpour and rushed undercover for a late lunch. The next day we visited Florence’s sights – climbed the 400+ steps up the tower and viewed the amazing Florence and glorious Tuscan surrounds; then visited the Duomo which was simple yet lovely, the crypt, and another museum associated with the Duomo. Afterward, we explored Florence, including the famous bridge and leather market!! ... read more

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice October 23rd 2012

Well, coming to our end of our trip, and our time in Italy, it’s time to backtrack and to recoup the week that was (do I sound a bit like the BBC?) Venice We arrived in Venice on an overcast day. The first thing I quickly realised about Venice is the lack of street names which makes it VERY hard to find one’s hotel. The second the MASS of tourists which makes it very hard to GET to your hotel, and thirdly the number of bridges over the canal which makes it very hard….in general! Ok, so we walked around and around (tip to those planning to go to Venice: If you work out the area you are staying in e.g. Castello, San Marco etc., the house numbers just go around in a linear ... read more

Europe » Italy » Lombardy » Milan October 12th 2012

Milan Milan, everyone seems to dislike it, but we liked it. Our hotel, which was near the centre, couldn’t find our reservation, sent us to another hotel (it’s a chain) in the sticks. Still it was 4 star and nice. So we hadn’t had lunch as Alitalia’s in-flight service is non-existent (unless you call 5 mini biscuits service) so we wandered and the only thing we could find open was Tizzy’s NY grill. We had some yummy burgers (not very Italian of us) and wonderful Chianti and a chat to the owner Tizzy from New York. Afterward, we caught the metro to central station to buy our tickets to Venice, then went back to the Duomo and walked around. The next day (yesterday) we went to the Duomo, which is a very grand cathedral ... read more

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam October 12th 2012

Amsterdam On Wednesday the 4th, we went to Amsterdam. We caught the metro to Gare du Nord (even though we walked most of the way there!) and navigated the chaos to get onto our train to Amsterdam. It was half an hour late departing so I was hoping that the strike was done and dusted. Anyway, we got to Amsterdam, and after walking out the wrong exit, we were greeted my cousin Biab her husband Douwe. I stayed in Amsterdam with Biab and Douwe for 3 months in 2003. Seems longer than that, but 9 years is a long time! So we went to their place in Zaandam, and were out up in the same room I stayed in all those years ago. Biab is one of my many cousins from Thailand, and she ... read more

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