Nenene

Zephyr

Nenene

Little old me and my travels.





I'd arrived in Veliko Tarnovo quite late the night before. The minibus driver had been kind enough to drop us near the centre of town instead of the West Bus Station, which is about 5 kilometres out of town. It dramatically shortened the walk to my hostel. I was surprised at how quiet the streets had been. I was happy that when I got to my hostel there was still some of the free dinner left. After helping myself to some breakfast, I made a rough plan for my one full day in Veliko Tarnovo. Since Bulgaria had entered a state of lockdown, I was unsure what was open, so my first priority was to secure a bus ticket back to Sofia for the next day to make my flight out. The bus station where you ... read more
Ulitsa General Gurko
Ulitsa General Gurko
Ulitsa General Gurko

Europe » Bulgaria » Plovdiv Province » Plovdiv March 12th 2020

After a good night's sleep in the lovely warm room, I headed down to the breakfast room to get breakfast. I love that this guesthouse/hostel is in a traditional old building and is full of character. The breakfast room is no exception as it has the original foundations of the building on display. The breakfast was great, there was a selection of cereal and breads. You were also given a plate with ham, cheese, egg, cucumber and tomato. There were plenty of different drinks on offer and the homemade lemonade was particularly delicious. Feeling full, I headed out for the day to explore more of Plovdiv. Yesterday, on the walking tour, we had visited the Regional Ethnographic Museum. Since we'd only had a look around the grounds and the exterior of the building, I headed inside ... read more
View from Nebet Tepe
View from Nebet Tepe
Nebet Tepe

Europe » Bulgaria » Plovdiv Province » Plovdiv March 11th 2020

I headed to the main bus station in Sofia to take the bus to Plovdiv. I had done a bit of research online and found that buses leave fairly regularly and there were a few different companies to choose from. I had hoped to make it to the bus station for the bus at nine, but I was too lazy to get out of bed, which was a blessing in this case as when I got to the bus station that bus had sold out earlier as had a few others. You can book tickets online for some buses in Bulgaria, but you have to print out your conformation and then exchange it at the station for a paper ticket for the driver. Seems like a total waste of time and doesn't exactly minimise human interaction. ... read more
Plovdiv Old Town
Plovdiv Old Town
Plovdiv Old Town

Europe » Macedonia » Bitola March 9th 2020

My guesthouse owner gave me a small breakfast before leaving. I had coffee and polenta with cheese. After eating quite a lot of polenta in Romania and finding it pretty bland, I wasn't expecting it to be amazing. However, my hostess has found a way to make it more appetising, by adding cheese. It tasted so much better. After breakfast, I made my way to Ohrid bus station and bought a ticket for the 10 o'clock bus to Bitola. I was quite surprised at how busy the bus was. I had expected it to be quieter. The journey to Bitola only took about an hour and a bit. Bitola bus station is a little out of town and it took me about twenty minutes to walk to my accommodation. I got there before check in, but ... read more
Heraklea Linkestis
Heraklea Linkestis
Heraklea Linkestis

Europe » Macedonia » Ohrid March 8th 2020

After one of the best night's sleep I'd had in a long time, I woke up to find my clothes all dry from the night before. Great start to the day, and when I looked out of the window, it looked like the rain had stopped, whether that would last I wasn't too sure, but I was hopeful. I made my way downstairs to enquire if I could get some breakfast. The owner wasn't about the first time I went down, but I tried again later and was in luck. I had a great breakfast of coffee, yogurt, burek, and extra cheese. The burek/banitsa I'd had in Bulgaria on the food tour had been amazing and this one was also amazing, maybe even better. I could happily move to the Balkans to feast on these for ... read more
Ohrid
Ohrid
Robev Family House

Europe » Macedonia » Ohrid March 7th 2020

The bus ride from Skopje to Lake Ohrid took about 3 and a bit hours. I enjoyed the views from the bus window as we made our way through Macedonia. I was a bit disorientated when I got out of the bus station, but soon got myself sorted on the right path to my accommodation. I almost missed the place as it was hidden down a side street when google maps said it was on the main street. The hostess was absolutely lovely. I can't speak any Macedonian and she doesn't speak a lot of English, but we were able to muddle through it. She even fed me a plate of veggies and rice porridge as a small lunch. After taking a bit of a rest, I headed out to explore Lake Ohrid. I wasn't staying ... read more
Lake Ohrid
Saint Sophia Church
Saint Sophia Church

Europe » Macedonia » Skopje March 6th 2020

Since I had covered everything that I had wanted to in the city, I decided to head a little further afield. The two main places that are within easy reach of the city are Matka Canyon and Vodno Mountain. Whilst Matka Canyon is no doubt the prettiest. The bus to Vodno Mountain ran more frequently, so I plumped for there. Getting a ticket for the bus appeared to be a bit of a ballache as you cannot buy tickets on the bus and have to buy and pre-load a card with credit. They can only be bought from special green booths which are scattered around the city. The transport company really needs to update their English webpage to make it easier for tourists to figure out how to buy tickets without having to rely on others ... read more
Cable Car
Millennium Cross
View from Vodno Mountain

Europe » Macedonia » Skopje March 5th 2020

After a hearty breakfast, I headed out to join the free walking tour. I am definitely a bit addicted to these tours, but I feel like it gives me a good overview of the city I'm in. This one met in front of Mother Teresa Memorial House. It was a beautiful morning, nice and sunny. There were only about five of us on the tour, which made a nice change after the bigger tours I'd been on in Sofia. We headed off to our first stop, which was at the end of the street. This was the old Skopje Train Station, which has now been turned into a museum. The train station was damaged by an earthquake in 1963 and this meant it was no longer used for its original purpose. I really liked the building, ... read more
Ortodox Church Konstantin and Elena
Warrior on a Horse
Mother Teresa Memorial House

Europe » Macedonia » Skopje March 4th 2020

It was quite an early start as a I retraced my steps from the previous day to Serdika Bus Station. As I got there far too early, I headed over to the other bus terminal for a bit of a mooch around. This one was much better and had shops, places to get food and toilets, and more importantly free wifi. I headed back over to catch my bus and I rather liked how chill it was as I just got on board and no one bothered to check my ticket. The bus wasn't too busy, which is always a bonus and we left bang on time. The bus had wifi, but once we left the city behind that seemed to disappear. I enjoyed the drive through the countryside. It was nice to see what the ... read more
Bulgarian Countryside
Holocaust Museum
Holocaust Museum

Europe » Bulgaria » Sofia City » Sofia March 3rd 2020

Today was a holiday in Bulgaria. Bulgarian Liberation Day celebrates the liberation from the Ottoman Empire during the Russo-Turkish War in the 19th century. Hopefully, it wouldn't be too busy with people out and about. My first port of call was the bus station to get my bus ticket for the next day to Skopje. I took the subway to the Railway Station and took the exit for Serdika Bus Station. Domestic buses go from the main bus station and international buses go from the Serdika Station. Luckily, the two stations are next to each other. Something that I found quite annoying in Bulgaria is that buying bus tickets is not on a centralised system, for both domestic and international, so you have to go to the specific office or counter for the bus company you ... read more
Sofia Regional History Museum
Sofia Regional History Museum
Sofia Regional History Museum




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