my year in england.

my year in england.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

european travels

so iv recently returned from a trip through northern /eastern Europe ( Bruges, Amsterdam  Berlin  Krakow  Prague) and i thought instead of giving a detailed account of 22 days of travelling it would be a lot easier and probably less boring if i summarized some of the lessons we learned along the way about the countries we visited and about travelling on this kind of low budget trip. so the countries we visited were firstly selected at random, just places that had been recommended to us or places we were just keen in general to go too. and honestly we didn't research them much before we left. now we were on a tight budget and this meant we stayed in hostels and basically the cheapest ones we could find, however i wouldn't have done it differently as its the perfect way to meet people who are travelers more than just tourists and who are all doing a similar kind of trip.
so lets start we Belguim, BRUGES

  • firstly you should know that its a really lovely place. pretty small but enough to see to fill three days if you make an effort to look around. we stayed at a really nice hostel called Snuffel Backpackers which was small but really nice and we meet lots of great people there which is largely thanks to the fact that it is small and so you get to know people easily. another thing you should know about belgium is that its not cheap to eat out but if you go to the supermarkets (which were nearly impossible to find) we found a small nightshop near our hostel, and buy food like pasta, frozen pizza etc that will help you save a lot of money. another thing is that the nightlife isnt amazing in Bruges, although iv heard its a lot better in other parts of Belgium like Ghent or Brussels. so dont expect much, however if you are with a group of friends you can make the most of it because the locals wont spend time chatting you up even paying the slightest attention to you. they dont seem too keen on tourists however if you tell them that they'll probably deny it. 
  • on to AMSTERDAM our next stop on the trip. now Amsterdam is definitely a place worth experiencing but in my humble opinion its pretty over rated. im not saying dont go, im saying dont stay for too long and dont plan one trip around Amsterdam  if you've got lots of money to spend on doing all the museums, Ann Franks house, loads of shopping and other tourist-ie things then spend a week, otherwise id say three/ four days covers it. its very expensive, to do anything really from going on the trams to basic food shopping and dont even get me started on the clubs prices, entrance fees etc. but its well worth it for some legal weed and some really good nights out and the free cheese samples are pretty good too. also spend some time looking for a good party hostel because that really makes a huge difference. ours had nothing going on so that didnt help much but there are good ones around.
  • our next stop was BERLIN. i really didnt know what to expect especially since id never considered Germany as a place id like to go on holiday but it was really amazing. Berlin is just an energetic city, thats really well priced, interesting and fun. there are lots of good walking and riding tours around and lots of young people. everyone we encountered was really friendly and helpful. the night life is amazing and not too expensive if you avoid buying drinks at the clubs. you also can get away with never paying for a train ticket because no one ever checks and there are no turn styles. also has lots of interesting history and the street art is so good. our hostel plus berlin was also really nice, it was huge so we didnt meet many people there but it was really new and modern.
  • next up was KRAKOW. Poland always seems like such a random place to go but its a hidden treasure. its cheap, beautiful and has all the modern necessity's you could ask for. everyone we met was friendly and helpful and our hostel was so much fun. the Greg and Tom party hostel. we did pub crawls basically every night and they were so cheap it was laughable. the vodka also really lived up to our expectations as did everything else. the nightlife was really good and every night the clubs were full, as well as modern and interesting. we found our selves in a zumba class in a club one night and another one thats walls were entirely made our of mirrors and glass (including the bathrooms) which was quite insane. we also made a visit to Auschwitz which is hard to describe other than being really sad. but it was an experience ill never forget and im so glad we went. Krakow is the perfect place if youre on a budget and still want to have a good time. i thoroughly enjoyed it and would go back in a heartbeat.
  • our last stop was PRAGUE. it probably tops the list as the most beautiful city we saw. the buildings are architecture blew me away. every where you look its just intricate designs and unique colorful buildings. the castle and Charles bridge are also a sight to behold and just walking around the town was such a experience. it was slightly more expensive than Poland and the currency was a mission to convert but it was still well priced and we got the most out of the expensive pub crawls. prague is just so beautiful that i doubt anyone could go there and not love it. its full of tourists which just livens everything up i think. nights out were lots of fun and the clubs were really good as well.. Prague is a must do for any traveler and it wont disappoint. . 

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