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Published: April 15th 2010
Czech Republic - 19 Days Diary extracts in italics
On day 62 I left my friend in Vienna and entered the Czech Republic. Day 62 - 63.7 miles - (€10)
The border patrol checked me out loads for some reason and they had “What the fluff is that?” expressions on their faces. Now gonna camp in the Unesco heritage area of Valtice-Lednice with way to many mossies.
Day 63 - 53.7 miles - (€0)
I spent the morning looking at old buildings - hunting lodges, halls and monuments in the area - very nice following some cycle paths. Then I headed North towards Brno - I think this is a country where my very vague A-Z of Europe will get me lost, the signs are all signalling the next town or two, my A-Z lists about one every six.
Day 64 - 53.4 miles (133 Crowns/about 5 euros)
A very pleasant day. I awoke, in my field of wheat, early, to avoid getting sprayed with pesticide then cycled to Brno. I bought food, after changing some money, in a Tesco.
Brno was just a
blob of concrete with a nice enough gothic-style cathedral - it was quite rundown and dirty, which would describe the rest of the country so far - the roads are rucking fubbish, I keep expecting Jeremy Beadle to jump out from behind a Czech tree. I keep smelling sewage and 95%!o(MISSING)f the people look very depressed.
Trebic was cool, a nice big long thin plaza and again gothic, medieval style buildings - I bumped into tons of Brits in RAF costumes, a fancy dress party nearby I imagine.
From Trebic I spent the next 4 days cycling pretty slowly towards Prague, arriving on day 69. I arrived in Prague to meet Jo and spend 8 or 9 days, the timing was fantastic as the physical condition of both me and the bike was pretty low. I was not sleeping well as both my mattresses were broken and I had some bad weather and the rim on the bike’s back wheel started to split. I ended up spending night 68 sleeping in a small wooden bird observatory to escape the rain and my leaking tent.
Over those days I saw and liked
Telc another nice Unesco town
- Z’dar nad Sazavou or the full title Pilgrimage Church of St John of Nepomuk at Zelena Hora - up on a hill was a very nice and unique church and graveyard within a star-shaped building/wall - t’was very nice
- The Kostnice bone church (just outside Kutna Hora) was brilliant especially as I didn’t have to pay the 40 Cr entrance fee. It is decorated entirely with human bones, an estimated 40,000 peoples remains - t’was quality, spooky as you like.
- The Unesco town of Kutna Hora had some really cool buldings
Prague Day 69 - 28.5 miles - (243 Cr)
So I managed to sleep okay in the wooden bird watching hut - it wasn’t at all comfy with a fluffed mattress, not enough room to stretch out my legs but luckily I was so cream crackered I slept alright.
I set off slowly, cycled slowly and arrived in the centre of Prague about 2pm. I stopped at another bike shop which could have fixed my bike but wanted me to buy two new wheels that “came as a set”, so even more hope it
can be fixed in Prague. I ate, cycled around a bit then booked a room for me and Jo for the week. Now I’m sat in a bus stop about 4 miles from the centre hoping the rain will die down so I can set up camp in a little wooded area - it’s a pretty grey sky though.
Prague looked like a really nice city - cool buildings and gothic looking churches all over the place, I can’t wait to explore
Day 70 - 17.2 miles - (135 Cr)
So I cycled back the 4 miles into the centre, leaving all my stuff hidden in this wooded area, it felt so nice cycling without the weight but also very strange. I spent hours people watching and walked around for about 4 miles then I got proper lost trying to find out where I had set up camp and left my stuff. It got a little worrying for a 15 minute period when I ended up heading back into the city on the motorway not recognising anything - luckily my orientation and directional skills were shit-hot. I didn’t check much of the centre as I’m waiting for Jo
so instead I wasted some money trying to kill time - 50 Bob on two beers, 40 Bob on 30 minutes internet and 45 Bob on food I didn’t really need.
Days 72 - Day 79 - zero miles
A week filled with eating (the Steak with yoghurt, jam, cream and apple was interesting), Drinking (Tonnes of cheap champagne (US$3.50 - $6)), and exploring (the Mocha museum and the Torture museum).
Then I left Prague and cycled towards Germany. Day 80 - 52.8 miles - (0 Cr)
A really hard day - Jo left me, I was hung over, feckin tired, dehydrated, spent most of the day lost due to bad, road and cycle path, signs and loads of little things like punctures, losing my water e.t.c.
Jo left at 6am in a cab which felt so incredibly wrong. I left Prague at midday along a really shit cycle path which followed the river. It was funny having to help pull a german dude out of the river. Between Kralupy and Melnik I was very lost.
Now I’m in a National Park about to try out my
A Unesco site
new mattress and fluff I’m tired.”
The next day I cycled through more beautiful scenery and crossed into Germany at about 5pm, to continue along the cycle paths following the Elbe.
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