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Adam's Travel log

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Welcome to my travellog. Here you can read about my journeys day by day.

Log entries 61 - 70 of 264 Page: 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

May 01, 2012 08:00 PM First day in Luxor

We landed at Luxor airport at 6 a.m. The taxi was already waiting - we booked it from the hotel since we wanted to avoid all the hassle after an almost sleepless night. Despite it was early the temperature was already at 24 deg C and still to climb into high 30s. We are staying at El Fayrouz hotel - a clean, nice vaulted dbl room with private bathroom and A/C costs LE190 breakfast incl. Exchange rate is 6LE per US dollar. We visited Karnak temple in the morning - it's really huge and well preserved. A caleche (horse cart) from the ferry landing costs 10 LE after haggling down from 30. Seems pricess have fallen since the revolution and it's easier to haggle. A taxi withis central Luxor is available for 5LE after haggling - less than one dollar! We didnt go to Luxor temple - you can see its shape from outside the fence and its similar to Karnak. And we are not stone freaks to analyse each and every stone in a temple. In the afternoon we visited the souk which is rather small when compared to Marakech or Damascus. There are not many tourists in Egypt now. It seems 80 or 90 percent of those who are not scared of the revolution are Russian.

Apr 30, 2012 08:00 PM Back on travellog

I gave up keepimg my travellog when I realised it takes some time to find an internet cafe to drop a few lines here. Since last to East Africa I decided to buy loxal sim cards and use the Internet on my mobile.

Today I'm leaving for Egypt with my wife. Our initial plan was to visit Balkan states but after Hungarian Malev went bankrupt our tickets were useless and it was too expensive to buy new ones at that time. So we had to find an alternative. We chose Egypt - LOT Polish Airlines sold tickets for less than US$200 return. Our dept time is 22:30. In Cairo we change planes and go to Luxor - it's going to be a tiring night. Keep your fingers crossed pls!

May 03, 2010 06:00 PM Nice towns and celtic ruins

As to parking the car in Portugal. Generally public parking places are not free. You have to pay for parking the car during the day. Depending on the location is between around 0.3 to 1 euro for one hour.
We started the day by walking around Guimaraes. The biggest attraction is just the old town. You can also visit the castle, but the tower is closed now so there's no chance of and aerial view of the town.
By midday we arrived at Citania de Briteiros - Celtic ruins located between Guimaraes and Braga. The admission is 3 euros. Two houses were restored so you can see how people lived 2 thousand years ago. There is also a medieval church in the premises.
Our next stop was a sanctuary in Bom Jesus do Monte. It's another example of a church with many runs of stairs zigzagin up to it. The view from below is breathtaking. From the top there's a less inspiring vista over Braga.
After Bom Jesus we contined to Braga. It didn't impress us at all. It's a busy and dirty city with hectic traffic. There are several sights to look at. Difficult to find a place to park the car.
The last stop today is Ponte de Lima - a small cosy town north of Braga. We have a nice room here. The town is a good place to have a stroll in the evening or to sip a glass of wine in one of the cafes. Internet is free at Espaco Internet.

May 02, 2010 06:00 PM Another day on the road

In the very morning we had a stroll in tiny Piodao. All the houses are made of stone slates and also the roofs are covered with these. They get the stuff from the rocks around. The cafe on the main square is also the place to have a nutritious breakfast. Around 11 we left the village for Lamego. The drive was long and took us more than 3 hours. We avoid the main highways for two reasons - these are toll roads and you miss all the nice small towns and villages on the way.
Our goal in Lamego was to see Igreja de Nossa Senhora dos Remedios and the impressive stairway that lead up to this church with many zigzags. We also had lunch there at Restaurante Novo (not recommended). After Lamego we visited Amarante for a short walk around and then continued to lovely Guimaraes. We found a nice room at Residencial das Trinas for 30 euros only (double with A/C, TV and bathroom ensuite). The town is lovely at night and in the centre there is free internet service and Espaco Internet (open until 10 p.m.).

May 01, 2010 06:00 PM Long way to Piodao

We started from Lisbon in the morning. The car is from Avis and arranged via Portugal Auto Rentals. We can recommend the company already. They have much cheaper rates than Avis itself (only 18 euros per day - insurance, second driver and unlimited kilometres - for A class car). Moreover we were given a better car than A class - it's a 5-door Toyota Yaris 1.0 with A/C.
First we visited Santarem and then Tomar. The way was very picturesque with many small towns and villages on the way. Many houses are decorated with azulejos - beautifully painted or patterned ceramic tiles. We liked Tomar more for it's atmosphere. It the afternoon we set off for remote Piodao in Parque Natural Serra da Estrella. We reached the village already in darkness going there by a snaking, steep road. We easily found nice room for only 30 euros for a double with a bathroom (actually the whole house was for us). If you need a room in Piodao just ask in the cafe on the main square as you arrive. This is also the place to leave your car.

Apr 30, 2010 06:00 PM To Lisbon via Amsterdam

My girlfriend and me are setting off for a week-long break in Portugal. We're flying to Lisbon with KLM. There we will rent a car and see the northern part of the country. Keep your fingers crossed, please!

Sep 23, 2009 06:00 PM Two thirds of the Tri-city: Sopot and Gdynia

In the morning we left Jastrzebia Gora for Gdynia by bus. We had to change the buses in Wladyslawowo but there was almost no waiting time, fortunately. Gdynia Glowna railways station features left-luggage office, so we left our suitcase there and caught a commuter train to Sopot. All three Gdansk, Gdynia and Sopot are connected by SKM, a commuter train with frequent services (every 8 minutes or so). From Gdynia to Sopot the ticket is only 1.95 zloties (discounted) and the ride takes 15 minutes. In Sopot we had a very nice stroll in the town as well as on the pier (molo - in Polish). There is a small admission fee that varies depending on the day of the week, with more expensive tickets during weekends. There's a nice view from the pier on the seafront of Sopot. You can also see Gdansk and Gdynia from there - it's not very far. There's also a pleasant and reasonably priced restaurant on the left side (looking from the sea side) of the pier. On the right-hand side there's an associated cafe. We popped in for a cup of coffee. The view from the upper level is very enjoyable.
On Plac Zdrojowy (just in front of the pier) there are many ice-cream parlours where you can also have a very tasty waffle with fresh fruit.
In the afternoon we went to Gdynia to see the seaside. There's a harbour where a military ship ORP Blyskawica (the Lightning) is anchored. Otherwise there's not much to see. When compared to Gdansk the rest of the Tri-city has little to offer.
At 5 p.m. we left by train to Warsaw. Now I'm on the train and we will reach the capital just before 11 p.m.

Sep 22, 2009 06:00 PM Chilly seaside

It was rainy in the morning. The temperature wasn't very inviting for beach-lovers either. So we decided to go to the town of Hel located at the tip of the peninsula bearing the same name. We got there by from Wladyslawowo by train (70 minutes, 9 zloties - discounted). To Wladyslawowo we got by public bus (15 minutes, 3.5 zloties - no students discount). Apart from buses there are also private minibuses plying the route. Off-season there is rougly one service per hour.
The train route from Wladyslawow to Hel is very picturesque. In some places the rail track goes as close to the shore as several meters. The peninsula is also very thin and in some places we could see the sea on both sides of it. There are also forests along the way.
Hel itself is a nice place to have a walk around. There's a very nice vista opening from the tip of the peninsula located around 30-minute walk from the train station. During warmer months you can sunbathe on the beach there and enjoy the waters of the Baltic Sea. Along the way there are many military facilities with good descriptions in Polish, German and English. The town is packed with restaurants where you can enjoy freshly fried local fish. Expect to pay from 30 to 60 zloties for the meal depending on the weight of the fish.
I can definitely recommend halibut, very tender and tasty fish. Unfortunately I can't remember the name of the place where I had it, but you can find this fish in many restaurants around. Also in Hel there are free hot-spots, so you can make use of your laptop or PDA.
In late afternoon we went back to Jastrzebia Gora to enjoy an evening stroll on the beach as well as romantic sunset.
Although it was chilly for the whole day and we even cought some rain drops, it was a very pleasurable day.

Sep 21, 2009 06:00 PM Sunny Gdansk

The summer is coming to an end so my girlfriend and me decided to go for a short break to the seaside. We left Warsaw by train before 7 a.m. to reach Gdansk after slightly more than 5 hours. It pays to buy tickets in advance, thanks to it we paid only 29 zloties (US $10) o/w per person. The standard fare is around 110 zloty. Although it's an intercity train the trip was more than 5 hours due to poor condition of tral track. Nevertheless the journey was comfortable.
In the afternoon we did sightseeing in Gdansk. We wanted to see the most important sights - many of them located along Dluga street as well as Dlugi Targ. Unfortunately Artus court, whose interior is said to be stunning, was closed on the day we wanted to visit. The most exhaustive activity, requiring lots of stamina, was climing 408 steps to catch the view from St Mary's Church's tower. We also saw the crane at located at the waterfront and admired the architecture of old Gdansk. There are so many masterpiece houses along the main drags of the Main Town. A stroll there is very pleasurable.
There are also many restaurants and eateries along Dluga and Dlugi Targ streets. We chose Kuchnia Rosyjska serving excellent traditional Russian fare at very reasonable prices.
In the evening we took a train to Gdynia (30 minutes, 4 zloties - discounted) to change for a bus to Jastrzebia Gora there. This tiny and sleepy village is said to be a bustling sea resort during July and August. Now it is deserted with most guesthouses closed. Yesterday we booked a room there at Atena guesthouse but on our arrival it turned out to be closed and the landlords didn't pick up the phone. Without any difficulty we found a decent double room in Neptun guesthouse. The room is ensuite and costs 80 zloties per day.
There is quick free wireless internet access available in the 'centre' of the village.

Sep 04, 2009 06:00 PM Flying sports hall

Yes, this is what Ilyushin 96 looks like inside. Very huge, spacious but that's it. Nothing else. No inflight entertainment (at all during more than 9-hour flight), stinky toilets and don't even expect the crew member to smile. They will definitely not. This is Aeroflot, old Soviet airline. But it also has its second face. From Moscow to Warsaw I flew onboard state-of-the-art Airbus 330-200. It probably entered service this year. Very modern, clean and the staff was friendly and helpful.
I still don't know why this aircraft was operated on SVO-WAW flight. Normally this route is served by Airbus 319, an aircraft with half the capacity as there are not many passengers. This time was not an exception, the aircraft was almost empty with ca. 240 seats and only 60 or so passengers onboard. I landed safely in Warsaw airport with 20 minutes delay due to heavy air traffic at SVO. Warsaw was cold (15 deg centigrade) and rainy.
This was a very enjoyable journey and my travelmate Talat again proved to be great company. Hope for another trip together.

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