Back from the tour around south west Europe. We travelled around 5000 kilometres in May with the Jeep and everything went fine. Basically we did a tour around the Iberian Peninsula. Besides work, the goal was La Manga to visit a wedding of dear friends. Many different experiences, kind people and interesting weather – at first quite chilly and then still mild temperatures in the south was unexpected.
We stayed in different kinds of places, hotels, AirBnBs and we also did camping with the roof tent of the jeep.
Just to provide a short wrap-up of the locations we stayed:
From Germany we went via a small piece of Austria at Bodensee to Switzerland where we could travel fast and good to France where we stayed in Oyonnax just around the corner of Geneva. Next stop was on the other side of France at the Atlantic Ocean: Bordeaux. We stayed there for two nights to get a bit of an experience of this lovely city. Via Biarritz we moved on to northern Spain and stayed on a Camping ground near Santander where we also visited the Palacio de La Magdalena. Next stop was Santiage de Compostela, the place where pilgrims swarm to on the path of self-reflection. Then it was time to hit nature in northern Portugal where we stayed a couple of nights in a hut.
In Porto we checked out the vegan scene and walked around that very nice city. Via the highways 1 and 2 we went south to the Algarve and the southwest point of Europe near Sagres. We stayed at two locations at Algarve before we moved on to Cadiz, the oldest city of western Europe. In Almeria we had a short stop before staying at the wedding area of Cartagena and La Manga for a week including a short visit to Murcia.
Then it was time to drive back home via Barcelona, where we stayed for a night and did the walking tour. Andorra on the way to Carcassonne was quite interesting, however the building style did not meet our favours. In Carcassonne we discovered La Cite, an UNESCO world heritage site. On the way to a night in Aix-Les-Bains we checked out a single vegan eatery in the middle of meat world of southern France. From there it was straight back through Switzterland with a big traffic jam in Zurich and we were back home in Munich.
Wednesday – today is the first step of travelling. Did I get everything necessary? Will find out on the trip.
From Munich to Salzburg/Austria and then across the country to Karawankentunnel. On top of the Pickerl/Vignette a Videomaut at two points is required along the road in Austria. It can be obtained online at Asfinag.
Plan is to attend the early Free Tour tomorrow at 11 a.m. on the steps in front of the Pink Church in Preseren Square (City’s Main square).
Yay – after almost one year and two projects in the lovely city of Vienna it’s time to travel.
I definitely want to be back again in the future to meet all the great people I had the chance to get aquainted with.
But first let’s focus on the new topics.
I. Vienna – Budapest
The Jeep is parked and waits for me to pick it up after i come back to Vienna from my first stop: Budapest.
My flat in a 1840s building right besides the house of Johann Strauss, has been given back. I went via the very speedy public transportations system via U1/U4/U6 to Bahnhof Meidling. Here, the trains to Budapest are heading off.
Small and crowded, it will be replaced by the new central station (Hauptbahnhof).
The train is an Austrian RailJet which I often used to travel between the final station Munich and Vienna. This time it’s the other final station Budapest.
Also, this time it’s second class, not first or as available in the RailJet even business class.
After arriving at Budapest Keleti, I directly went to the hotel which is conveniently located. My stomach roared like an arctic bear (which was trapped for quite a while on an ice floe). So importantly, the first trip was to counter hunger and thirst. It led me to Napfényes Étterem at Rózsa utca 39. It’s a vegan only restaurant so vegans as vegetarians can order without doubt. First the delicious homemade ginger lemonade and a bean goulash soup as a starter. The main dish was a Hungarian stuffed pickled cabbage.
Soup, vanished within seconds
Main dish: Hungarian stuffed pickled cabbage
But that was not the end of the day. After checking out the House of Hungarian photographers (exhibition of early Magnum work) I found myself near the St. Stephans-Basilika.
The inside is amazing, I was there during mass.
Now my target was to see the Duna/Donau/Danube river. Luckily in front of me was the world’s famous Chain Bridge (Széchenyi lánchíd / Kettenbrücke). Crossed it from Pest to Buda and back.
On the way back to the hotel Hare Krishna people crossed my path while I got a hint of the astonishing architecture of Pest.
After quite some security checks I’m about to board the US Airways plane. Something tells me that it won’t be as comforting as the A380 to Dubai.
As always the ride from Nordfriedhof to the airport went flawless thanks to Lufthansa Airportbus.
Back to the plane – the A330 looks better than I thought! Enough leg space and a monitor in front of me – will I be able to utilitze advanced board entertainment?
After a more or less comfy flight (more because of space, less because of my neighbouring passengers) my conclusion is a good one. Two movies, a tiny bit of sleep and touchdown in Phili.
From Terminal A to C its not too far, the passport check and security screenings with the usual long lines of waiting people took most of the time. I threw my rucksack on a baggage thingy, still with unclosed wrap sack. So it went on its way to the plane without full protection. Also I was the first time of my life in a body scanner…urgh.
A little less space on the in-country flight, still quite enough.
We arrived by train at Marrakesh main station. Ticket Casablanca – Marrakesh, 2nd class is 91 Dirham per person and the travel takes about 3 hours.
After taxi dropped us off nearby a nice boy brought us to the riad (hostel).
Now we are sitting in a restaurant whose name I don’t know and which is in a street I also don’t know. As we are staying in a side branch of our riad I also don’t know how to get back.
Officially lost in Marrakesh.
At least no need to be hungry. Delicious food awaits us.