Page 5 of laj Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Hungary » Central Hungary » Budapest September 28th 2007

Day 8: Friday 28 September 2007 Beautiful Budapest and the Blue Danube Wake up 6am bags and Breaky 6:30am Leave 7:30am We headed off for Budapest this morning!! It began pouring rain. Perfect timing. At one point we had to make a detour for roadworks. There was only one sign then nothing. We ended up on a country road through some quaint towns. This was great as we didn’t have to look at highways. There were lots of interesting little towns to drive through. We stopped for morning tea at a Maccas. FREE clean toilets. Even though they had neon lighting and were playing Kylie Minogue. Felt wrong.  Apparently the other local ones were only a hole in the ground, so needless to say we all went here. We moved over the Slovakian border. They ... read more
Budapest illuminated
Danube Cruise Fruit

Europe » Czech Republic » Prague September 27th 2007

Day 7:Thursday 27 September 2007 Let the Czech Beer flow! Wake up:7am Breaky: 7:30am Prague Sightseeing: 8:30am It was lovely not to have to pack and rush today. I still went to breaky early at 6:30am. It was delicious. I thought it might be after dinner last night. At 8:30am we met Gary and Lucia at the coach and went back to the Historical Area. It was impressive to see a presidential car parade go past. Tomorrow is a festival holiday in Prague. The skull of Wenslaw will be paraded through the town. We walked over to St Vittus cathedral and had a tour. There were many relics. As Lucia said “The saints don’t lie in Peace here - they lie in Pieces” The tomb of Wenceslas was in this cathedral. His chapel was lovely. The ... read more
On the Charles Bridge
Country Folklore Dancers
Country Folklore Evening

Europe » Czech Republic » Prague September 26th 2007

Day 6: Wednesday 26 September 2007 Gingerbread and Brandy! Wake up Call: 6:30am Bags and Breaky: 7:15am leave 8am Breakfast was basic. When they ran out of food they took forever to replace it. I had egg and lovely ham, then a roll with a “Brunch” spread (Cheese and Onion) We drove a short distance to the Old Bridge and went for a 20 minute stroll. The view was picturesque. The water was rushing over the rocks. The statues were lovely. It was very foggy and very chilly. I saw that it was going to be around 13 degrees. It looked like a lovely little town. Back in the bus and on the road to Nurnberg. The town square was delightful. Gary said that the Nazi parade grounds are not worth visiting when you have limited ... read more
Stall in Nuremberg
Monestary in Praha

Europe » Germany » North Rhine-Westphalia » Cologne September 25th 2007

Day 5 Tuesday 25 September 2007 Riding the River Wake Up Call: 6am Bags: 6:30am Breaky: 7am bus: 7:30am Leave 7:45am Most of us had a snoozy drive our of Holland today. It was raining quite heavily and made good dozing weather. We stopped at the border for 20 minutes - toilet €0.50. Back on the bus and on the way to Koln (Cologne). We only had a quick half an hour stop to see the Cathedral. There was about to be a holy service so we were hurried through. The cathedral was amazing. The sheer size and detail was extrodinary. Inside, the stained glass windows were wonderfully detailed. I used the Holy water on the way out. After using the toilets there, I grabbed 2 “Berliner” donuts for €1.25. Just big sugary jam donuts. YUM! ... read more
Pastries in Cologne
German village along the Rhine
Along the Rhine

Europe » Netherlands » North Holland » Amsterdam September 24th 2007

Day 4 Monday 24 September 2007 Clogs, Canals and Red Lights. Wake up : 6:15am Bags and Breaky : 7am Leave 7:45am We had a lovely breakfast today. The best croissants with Nutella. There were doughnuts and waffles. The coffee was way too strong for me. We drove for about 2 hours and stopped at the Autogrill for ½ an hour. Clean toilets for €0.30 Rob had a nice smoothie. Back on the road. We crossed the Dutch frontier and began to see canals. Gary pointed out the houseboats and how they were higher than us. At one point, we drove under the water. Very cool. We stopped for photos at a windmill. It was FREEZING. The wind was strong and it was very overcast and starting to drizzle. We were all happy to snap our ... read more
The Clog Factory

Europe » Belgium » Brussels-Capital Region » Brussels September 23rd 2007

Day Three: Bring on the Waffles! Sunday 23 September 2007 Wake up call: 4:15am Bags and Breaky Box 4:45am Lobby 5:50am Leave 5:45am It was a very early start. Breakfast box was a ham and cheese roll, croissant, yoghurt, apple, juice and water bottle. There were about 4 tour groups leaving so it was a little hectic. We met Gary, our tour director, who directed us down to the bus. As we drove through London in the dark, he explained a few things about the tour and how it would work. It took us around 2 hours to reach Dover. The white cliffs were huge. It is a sleepy little town. We were stopped at the border by a very attractive French policewoman. She boarded the bus and checked and stamped our passports. This was ... read more
Chocolate House
Horse and Carriage in Bruge

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London September 22nd 2007

Day Three: Nice Surprises Saturday 22nd September 2007 The day started off restlessly at 3:30am. I got up and wrote some postcards and went back to sleep till after 6am! Off to breakfast downstairs. It ws nice, but I couldn't eat much. We set off for the walk to Harrods through Hyde Park. There were a few squirrels running around. When we got to Harrods at about 9am, we found that it didn't open till 10am. We walked around it, reading the great window stories, then went for a walk through Kensington. (VERY rich houses at about £4 00 000!! Amazingly we ran into our house builder from Caboolture, Kelvin, in the backstreets, doing the exact same thing we were. Waiting for Harrods to open. It really is a small world. It was very quiet ... read more
Vat of Paella
Portobello Road
Pastry Counter in Harrods

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London September 21st 2007

London Day One Friday 21 September 2007 Driving out of the airport, I was still a little deaf. It looked just like Sydney,till we hit the houses. Every single house was quaint with shingled rooves and chimmnies everywhere. The lights here go amber before they go green. We got to our hotel The Thistle Marble Arch at about 7:30am. LUCKILY a room was ready! Quite nice. We can see Oxford Street.We freshened up and walked down to Park Lane to get our Original Sightseeing bus tickets. I had left my wallet in the room - up there in the wind. There was a big commotion on Park Lane. We could see a guy sitting on the window ledge threatening to jump. On the way back, we could just see the broken window. Don't know what happened? ... read more
Sightseeing Bus
Park Lane KFC
Big Ben

Europe September 20th 2007

The Flight. Thursday September 20 2007 What an exciting day. To think we'd been counting down for 18 months! We dropped the kids off at school and I must admit I got very teary and nervy.I spent a bit of time pacing the house. Biggest trauma was I couldn't find my socks. Turned out Rob was wearing them. Great start. Colin came to pick us up and we arrived at the airport at 10:30am for our 1.55pm flight. Packing was okay! Our suitcases weighed in at 14.5 kg and 13.5 kg!Once we've thrown out some stuff there'll be plenty of room for souvineers. It was a nervy wait. I didn't want to sit still and couldn't read my book. Eventually we boarded. The Qantas Airbus was nice. I had a window seat. All the outback and ... read more

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