Monday, August 12, 2013

Dream a little dream...

My backpack feels light today, suspiciously so. A quick check - no items missing. Could it be, just maybe, possibly, tentatively that my shoulders and back have gotten stronger from lugging the bulgy grey illpacked bag around? Woohoo :)

A week left before i return to my studio flat. Small, infested with giant spiders, rats, mice and most recently under siege from hordes of flies. But still, my own little space of relative comfort and privacy.

Kinda looking forward to it. Looking forward to cooking up a storm - nasi lemak, aubergine sambal, stir fried pakchoy, fluffy omellette and some fried anchovies to go with it all - and stuffing my face while curled up in bed with true blood playing on my laptop.

I've made myself hungry. Time for lunch!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

An update at last!

This trip was meant to be the one trip i blog regularly during but as i inch reluctantly into week 3, obviously it didnt happen.

But this is me, trying to catch up. Its important that i blog. When i think about earlier trips, what remains is a vague general impression of the town, incident or special meal but the details escape me..

So, after preikestolen, i took a flight from stavanger to oslo then a second flight from oslo to berlin. Those two norwegian airline flights cost me quite a lot but did save me lots of time.

Berlin was awesome and very, very hot. There i spent two nights in generator berlin hostel and two nights in jetpak ecolodge in grunewald forest..

From berlin a train ride of about 2.5 hours took me to the city of dresden in southern germany. Walked around the beautiful old town in the evening and the next day, i took a train to Prague - another 2 hours or so.

Had 3 nights in prague, which i thought to be crowded and overrated. I did however discover this super cheap and authentic indian restaurant "beas vegetarian dhaba" and in true blue asian style proceeded to eat there almost every day....

My destination after that was hallstatt. Due to problems with the railway track, it took me three trains, two busses and one ferry to get to my small but quaint single room in Gasthof Simony. I had my own balcony overlooking the lake so most of my time in hallstatt was spent being a vegetable on that balcony.

Today i left hallstatt and im in graz. Tomoro i get to sightsee graz during the day and in the evening make my way to zagreb airport to get my flight to sarajevo, a place ive been wanting to visit for a very long time.

Its a very busy trip and so far i feel that maybe if i hadnt squeezed in so much into three weeks, ill be more relaxed.. But now that ive planned and booked it all, might as well push myself, see loads and enjoy the ride.

I can always relax when im back home in leicester... Hopefully.

Pictures : berlin market in the park,
prague as seen from the castle,
dresden in the evening,
hallstatt lake on a gloomy day,
and a really good lunch.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Preikestolen

This trip has been quite busy so far. Im writing this from Berlin right after happily checking out of my horrible hostel.. After this, the plan is to check out the thai food market and then head off to my hostel for the next two nights, jetpak eco lodge. Super excited!! :D

Picking up where i left off, from Bergen i got a bus to stavanger. That in itself was quite an experience as the bus involved two 20 minute ferry crossings where the bus drove on to the lower deck and we the passengers had to move to the upper deck.

The next day, i took a ferry to tau and from there transfered to a ferry to the preikestolen parking lot, the start of the hike. And what a hike it was! For a place that touristy, the trail was remarkably well preserved. The landscape along the 2 hr walk up was interesting and varied, from lakes to meadows to stony boulders to stone steps up along a stream.

No entrance fees to the park, just like the rest of norway. Transport from stavanger cost me 250nok return and took about an hour each way.

Overall, it wasnt a particularly difficult hike but if some of the less fit people (myself included!) might huff and puff and moan and whine on the way up... But i got up there in the end to be rewarded with a view so beautiful it looked downright fake.

Around 615, got the bus back with great reluctance... It would have been beyond amazing to set up camp up there overnight. But i had to return to my comfy room and be content with the awesome day i just had.

Places like this remind me why i travel.