A Travellerspoint blog

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Eger

Day 3 - 9th September

sunny 28 °C

Check out. A quick bite to eat before checking out. We’d checked out a day early. Lucky we booked verbally over the phone and not through one of the websites or we would have been bound to another night. The pokiness of the room was driving us mental and every sound made in the complex could be heard from any part of the hotel. It became frustrating. Good decision to leave when we did.

Travel Day. Today we had to catch 3 trains. Eger to Fuzesabony, Fuzesabony to Budapest then Budapest to Salzburg. A true travel day indeed. We leave Eger at 1030am and plan to arrive in Salzburg at 7pm. Long day.

Goodbye Hungary. We won’t be back for a while. We had such a good time. We saw so much more of the country than we did last time plus we really soaked up the atmosphere. This trip was memorable for many reasons but none more than our moment on the Chain Bridge. It will be cherished forever. Until next time...

Posted by samandvic 06:26 Archived in Hungary Comments (0)

Salzburg

Day 1 - 9th September

sunny 28 °C

Rail Jet. Jumped aboard an Austrian train to take us to Salzburg. Superb. Right up there with the French and German trains, if not better. They even have Platinum class. The seats recline right back like the Business class pods on airplanes. We’re currently travelling first class and it only costs 25 Euro to upgrade. Maybe we’ll do it on one of the last legs.

Wind Farm. Stretched for kilometres. By far the biggest I’ve seen. Have to do some research. On the digital rail map (LCD on board the first class cabin), we appeared to be near Parndorf. Worth checking out. Literally hundreds of these things as far as the eye could see.

Austrian country side. The hills really are alive here. Beautiful rolling hills leading up to the mountains with scattered housing amongst the green pastures. Breathtaking.

HBF under construction. Arrived on time at the Salzburg Hopbahnhoff. Efficient, clean and comfortable ride. Hardly felt the time. Great train network. The main station was under renovation. Looks like it is going to be a pearler.

Salzburg central. Fell in love with this place the moment we got here. Gorgeous views across the river through the heart of the town. Mountains in the background with well preserved architecture at the fore. Picture perfect. Can’t wait to see it in the day time.

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Master Chef. Far from it. Austrian cuisine is very similar to that of the Germans… terrible. I make no apologies. They have achieved so much in terms of architecture, art, music, etc. but unfortunately did not meet a wooden spoon until way too late in their development. Like teaching a new language to an 80 year old. Not gonna happen. Pasta for dinner from the most Italian place we could find. Still not that great. Good time to diet!

Posted by samandvic 11:21 Archived in Austria Comments (0)

Salzburg

Day 2 - 10th September

sunny 32 °C

Hop on hop off. Our favourite. All the sites in an hour or two then back to those most preferred. Sensational weather. 30 something and not a cloud in the sky.. brilliant.

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Amazing by day. Well we thought the night views were scintillating but Salzburg is definitely at it’s best during the day time. A real relaxed feel and pleasing to the eye no matter where you look. No graffiti, no litter, not even a smoke butt on the floor.

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I am 16 going on 17... We stopped to do the trick fountains and the surrounding parklands, the site in which they relocated the original gazebo/rotunda from the sound of music. Almost broke out in song…

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Trick fountains. The archbishop had built these fountains as an entertaining ground for his guests. Quite remarkable. Everything was hydro powered, including intricate little model figurines, music, flutes and sprinkler systems. The reason they were referred to as the trick fountains was because of the archbishop's desire to saturate his guests with elaborate sprinklers setup in the viewing/entertainment areas at an unsuspecting moment. Very cool. The stone dinner table for instance had sprinklers built into the seats. Apparently, you are not permitted to stand in an archbishop’s presence if he is still seated, which meant they had to sit through the water show for his amusement. I would have been beheaded in those days…

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Still can’t cook. We had a Turkish kebab for lunch. See the trend? Anything but local food. It was OK. I just don’t get it. Everyone working in the restaurant was as Turkish as they get and yet it was a little disappointing. Maybe they don’t have to try as hard here…

Fortress/shopping strip. We got off the bus to check out the fortress built above the old town. Left for the fortress, right for the exclusive shopping strip. We went right…

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Pasta II. I had the simplest gnocchi and Vic ordered calamari. Lets just keep it at, “if you have nothing positive to say… “. Did you know Mozart was born here… ?

Mozart. I was simply changing the subject but Mozart really is their proud son. Everywhere you go there are Mozart cafes, restaurants, souvenir stands, his place of birth, the house he lived in, candy stores… everything Mozart imaginable. I don’t even think he was that big until the Bugs Bunny Show…

Involuntary insomnia. Vic was up to 3am looking for accommodation in Switzerland. Honestly, where do the Swiss get off charging $300-$400 per night in shitty 2 star accommodation. Zurich and Bern were the same. I love Swiss merchandise and don’t mind paying for quality but that is ridiculous. May have to rethink the plan.

Posted by samandvic 11:34 Archived in Austria Comments (0)

Salzburg

Day 3 - 11th September

sunny 30 °C

Change of plan. The theme of our travels. Vic woke up tired and stressed. ‘We’re f’d’, she said. ‘Plan is broken and nowhere to go’. Not a bad problem to have. Once I reminded Vic that we had 10 free days to do whatever we wanted, her eyes lit up. ‘Well fk it, we’re going to Paris.’

New plan. 10 days to go in Europe. Back in Frankfurt on the 21st September our only restriction. We decided to plan, map, and book both hotels and trains for the last couple of weeks. Singapore GP is already booked and paid. We will now spend 3 nights in Paris, 3 nights in Brussels/Bruges and 3 nights in Amsterdam before getting the fast train back to Frankfurt. Vic did the hotel bookings on the net while I went to the train station to reserve our seats. Well executed. Really exciting. Loving the spontaneity.

Late start. After our rampant planning effort, our day began a bit late but everything fell into place. We were both very much at peace with the world and enjoyed a leisurely stroll. No agenda... no destination... just a stroll.

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Gardens. The Mirabella gardens were the perfect setting for our tranquil mood. Now this was a garden. The box work, English box that is was superb. Beautiful setting and even though we had just made our way out, we couldn’t resist sitting on a bench for an hour or so simply gazing into the distance. Harmony.

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Michelin star. This Michelin star restaurant was renowned for serving its delicacies in cones, as finger food. We thought we’d stop to sample a few. Great decision. Best steak tartar ever! Vic went straight for the desert cones which were equally as good. Carpe Diem was the name of the restaurant which was really quite befitting of our day.

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Lazy stroll back. We were leaving Salzburg tomorrow for more Northern pastures. I think we will also be leaving behind the good weather according to the European weather bureau, which mind you has not forecasted a single day correctly throughout our entire visit. A little cooler and greater chance of rain. I think we can live with that…

Posted by samandvic 15:20 Archived in Austria Comments (0)

Salzburg

Day 4 - 12th September

overcast 19 °C

Early departure. We were up at 0530 to get the early train to Stuttgart before connecting to the Paris TGV. Even got in a spot of brekky. Nothing much else to report. First train departs at 0751 and we arrive in Paris at 1631.

TGV. A reminder of our 2009 odyssey. We caught a number of TGV trains on our last trip. They even served us a meal… with beer… for free! Well, maybe not entirely free. All TGV journeys have compulsory reservation which of course is coupled with a butt-crippling fee, I think that more than adequately covered it.

Posted by samandvic 02:32 Archived in Austria Comments (0)

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